Track going to new venue

NW Staff

After a successful indoor season, the Northern Michigan University track and field team will turn its attention to the outdoor season.

The Wildcats will compete in six meets before the NCAA Championships at the end of May. The season will get underway at the Titan Invitational on April 2. The meet was supposed to be in Oshkosh, Wis. but got moved to Waukesha due to snow. NMU will travel back to Waukesha, Wis. for the Carroll College Invite (April 9). Northwood University will host a meet the next weekend (April 16). The ‘Cats will then travel to Hillsdale (April 29-30) to compete in the Gina Relays to prepare for the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championship on May 4-6. NMU athletes will have another shot to qualify for the NCAA at the Last Chance Qualifier meet on May 14. NCAA Championships are in Stanislaus, Calif. on May 26-28.

The Wildcats broke six school records during the 2010 outdoor season and finished fourth at the GLIAC Championship. Junior Bailey Franklin was the GLIAC Women’s Field Athlete of the Year after winning the triple jump and finishing third in the heptathlon and high jump. Franklin set the high jump school record last season and is entering the season ranked ninth in the country in the event. She is also ranked 20th in the heptathlon.

Kristen Schulz broke the 3,000 steeple chase record last season and returns for her senior season. Brittnee Balbierz, Mellissa Christensen and Catherine Angeli were on the record-setting 4×100 relay team. Balbierz is a senior while Christensen and Angeli are juniors. Kirsten Hoklas and Katrina Lamansky are the other seniors on the team. Rachael Williams is the fourth junior on the squad that consists of 24 freshmen and sophomores.