GENEVA, Ohio – () Briana Vander Woude of Dordt landed the first gold medal on Day 1 of the NAIA Men’s and Women’s Indoor Track and Field National Championships at the SPIRE Institute on Thursday.
Vander Woude led from start to finish on a spectacular day on her way to winning the women’s pentathlon and captured Dordt’s first-ever individual national title at NAIA championships.
She won the hurdles and the high jump to open up the event and then finished in the top three places in the next three events (shot put, long jump and 800m) to record an overall score of 3751 points on the day.
“Briana had a personal record in both the hurdles and high jump. That got her off to a really good start (after two events) and took off some of the pressure,” said Dordt head coach Craig Heynen.
“(With the team points), that gets us going into tomorrow’s action on a good note.”
Jillian Ourada of Doane (Neb.) was second with 3638pts, with Brittany Green of Cornerstone taking third with a score of 3415pts.
Doane captured the most points in the event after placing three athletes in the top eight for 16 points in the team scoring.
Meanwhile, after four events in the men Heptathlon, Siena Heights’ (Mich.) Calvin Sullins leads the titles after day one with 3,033 points, with Doane duo Rob Keeney and Kale Wolken in second and third, respectively.
In action on the track, Hannah Helker of Oklahoma Baptist posted 17:50.26 to lead all qualifiers in the women’s 5,000m final, Phil Rizzo of St. Francis (Ill.) (14:53.97) leads the men.
Doane led all qualifiers into the final of the 4×400 women’s relay final with a time of 3:45.62, but Oklahoma Baptist is close by. Biola (Calif.) also had a good day in qualifiers and clocked the fastest qualifying time (9:09.54) in the 4×800 women’s relay.
Oklahoma Baptist (3:10.80) set the pace in the men’s 4x400m heats, Morningside (7:37.46) quickest of the rounds in the men’s 4×800.
Doane leads the women’s team standings with 16 points after one day of the NAIA championship, with Dordt second on 10pts, Cornerstone (6), and Mount Mercy (4).