Pioneers complete indoor track, field season

Autumn Willenborg, General Reporter

University of Wisconsin-Platteville Indoor Track and Field team competed in the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division III Indoor Track and Field National Championships March 11-12.

Junior criminal justice major Amber Williams won the triple jump at the National Championships. Williams walked away with her first national championship under her belt.

“Nationals isn’t something you can prepare for,” Williams said. “It’s more of an ‘in the moment’ thing.”

Leading up to the event, the only challenge facing Williams was her own body. Williams had been feeling sore the day of the event, but had to push past the pain.

“Just because I won or like I got a certain place, doesn’t mean that I’m going to get it again,” said Williams. Williams said she still has to work just as hard throughout the rest of the season.

Head Track and Field coach Chris Rotzenberg said, “[Williams’] second jump of the day won her the competition. The last jump, her sixth jump of the day, she put what we call a big bomb out there.” Williams has been preparing for this for two years Rotzenberg said.

Williams set a new school record as she ran down the runway and received 40-9.5 (12.43m). Williams made the NCAA Division III all-time best list for triple jump and tied for the sixth best mark.

Williams has high hopes for the rest of her season, including being field athlete of the year for nationals.

“If I’m lazy it really doesn’t matter because there’s somebody out there working harder than me,” Williams said.

Another Pioneer, junior manufacture technology management Dan Arnold achieved an all-time best performance for the 60-meter hurdle in 7.85 seconds.

“As the season progresses each week, you just have to keep building off of yourself to prepare for each meet,” Arnold said.

At nationals, Arnold had to face two time defending national champion Luke Campbell from Salisbury, Campbell finished with a 7.82 seconds. “It’s intimating going against someone who’s got a lot of experience under their belt, but we definitely put on a good race for everybody,” Arnold said.

Coach Rotzenberg also mentioned Campbell facing off to Arnold and said, “it [was not] going to be an easy task over taking him.” But Coach Rotzenberg feels good about Arnold and how he’ll will perform throughout the rest of the season.

Arnold is hoping to achieve a place at Wartburg for outdoor nationals and come home with a national championship. “Participating in the indoor season is really going to help my outdoor season,” Arnold said.

As the championship came to a close, the women’s team finished ninth and the men’s team finished in 18th place.

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