Kearney, Neb. – The Nebraska-Kearney track and field teams finished seventh (men) and ninth (women) at the 2018 MIAA Indoor Championships Sunday in Pittsburg, Kan. The three-day meet was hosted by Pittsburg State and began Friday. Both Gorilla squads took home the team titles, the PSU men tallying 141 points and the women garnering 180.50 points. The Emporia State men (93) and Central Missouri women (77.25) were the runners up. For UNK, the men scored 39.50 points to place ahead of five other squads with the Loper women netting 30.25 points to beat four teams. After being runner up in the 5,000 meter run Saturday, Ord junior Andrew Fields scored another eight points on Sunday by finishing second in the 3,000 (8:30.95). The time is a new career low and moves him up four spots to sixth on UNK’s all-time list. Deweese sophomore Corbin Hansen was third in the 3,000 and placed eighth in the 5,000 (8:36.39) today. In the mile, Lincoln sophomore Nate Pierce came in eighth (4:20.88) to score a team point with Kansas senior Josh Mehl ninth (4:23.36). UNK also was ninth in the 4×4 relay (3:21.91). In men’s field events, Elm Creek junior Jacob Bartling tossed the shot a career-best 58-0.25 to come in third. That also pushes him up to 14th on the national list, a spot that likely sends him to the NCAA Championships in two weeks. Also in that event, Utica sophomore Tanner Barth was eighth (52-11).
UNK then tallied 5.50 points in the pole vault as Cairo junior Grant Myers tied for fifth (career-best 16-3.50) and Fullerton senior Bailey Stapleman (15-11.5) was a spot back in seventh. Finally on the men’s side, true freshman Jakob Estrada (6-7) and Montrez Jackson (6-5) were 10th and 11th, respectively, in the high jump. Leading the Loper women on Sunday was Auburn senior Melissa Davison. She scored eight team points by finishing fourth in the mile (5:06.99) and sixth at 800 meters (2:20.77). Right behind her in the mile was Blair senior Molly Dibben (career-best 5:08.07). In the women’s shot, UNK also had two scorers in McCook redshirt freshman Tiara Schmidt (3rd/46-0) and Nelson senior Holly Bower (7th/44-11.75). Finally, Colorado junior Michaela Hoffman tied her career-best time (8.88) in the 60 hurdles to finish fifth and score four points. The NCAA indoor meet is also at Pitt State; the list of qualifiers will be released in a few days.