Loper Track Performs Well in Missouri

Loper Track Performs Well in Missouri
January 23rd, 2023 | Peter Yazvac

Kearney, Neb. – The Nebraska Kearney track and field team won six events and had 12 national list efforts Saturday at the Northwest Missouri State Open in Maryville. The non-team team scoring event featured Division II, NAIA and junior colleges from around the Midwest. 

After winning two events last weekend, 800-meter defending national champion Wes Ferguson (Fremont) was at it again, taking the mile in 4:06.64. That is just off his school-record (4:06.49) and ranks him second nationally at the moment. Not to be outdone, McCool Junction senior Luke Stuckey (2nd/4:08.26) and Ainsworth junior Ben Arens (5th/4:10.28) had some of the best times in UNK history. Stuckey moves up two spots to fifth with Arens now ninth in an event where the Lopers had five of the top 10 finishers.

Also taking Gold on the men’s side was the 4×4 squad (3:21.22), Ravenna redshirt sophomore Jack Drahota in the 60 hurdles (8.19) and Firth true freshman Tanner Cooper in the 800 (1:53.36). Cooper was the anchor for the relay team and his time in the 800 is just outside the Loper all-time top 10. Drahota, meanwhile, vaults up four spots to fifth on the UNK top 10 list.

The women saw Taylor redshirt junior Jordan Dockweiler take the shot put (44-9.75) with Kearney redshirt freshman Lily Novacek (57-2.75) leading the way in the weight throw. She now ranks fifth in UNK history with that toss being a provisional effort, as was Dockweiler’s.

Also in the field, UNK saw Giltner redshirt junior Alex Goracke place third in the weight throw with a solid 62-1 while Kansas redshirt junior Evan Prohaska came in fourth (provisional 61-4.75). That places him eighth in Loper lore. Next, David City redshirt sophomore Gabrielle Oborny had the third best effort (12-0.75) in school-history in the pole vault. That’ll rank her 27th on the national list.

Finally, Kearney redshirt sophomore Nicole Messbarger was one of four Lopers in the top 10 in the 400 thanks to a time (57.72) that moves her up to ninth in school-history, Hershey redshirt senior Kyler Banks cleared 15-9 to place second in the vault, Fremont sophomore Mara Hemmer (800/5:04.17) and Stamford freshman Brianna Russell (high jump/5-3.75) both came in second with Funk redshirt senior Baylee Alstrom (3rd/10:19.93) one of three Lopers in the top six of the 3,000.  UNK hosts the annual Charlie Foster Classic next Friday in Cushing Coliseum.


© 2023 Nebraska Rural Radio Association. All rights reserved. Republishing, rebroadcasting, rewriting, redistributing prohibited. Copyright Information