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Katarina Rothhorn
Katarina Rothhorn
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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

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Women’s spring soccer comes to an end this weekend
Lily GouinApril 19, 2024

’Cats prepare for Al Owens Classic: Athletes return from third-place finish at Hillsdale Invitational

The Northern Michigan University women’s track and field team finished in the top three at the Hillsdale Invitational on Saturday, April 12. With 96 points, the Wildcats finished in third place out of the six teams that competed, including Hillsdale College, Lake Erie University, Ferris State University, Grand Valley State University and Wayne State University. The Wildcats will travel to Allendale, Mich., next to compete in the Al Owens Classic. The event will be hosted by the Lakers of Grand Valley State University.

Some of the GLIAC teams that will be at the event include Northwood University, Michigan Tech University, Ferris State University and Lake Superior State University.Host GVSU is ranked No. 1 in the country, according to the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association. Sophomore Jaylee Brown said they are very good competition.

“GVSU is definitely a team with lots of talent,” Brown said. “As hard as it is to compete against them, they really just bring the best out of all of us, giving us that extra push.”The ’Cats will be making their appearance in the Al Owens Classic for the third year in a row. In 2012 the ’Cats had three athletes break school records at the event and three first-place finishes.

Last season the ’Cats had a number of athletes place in the top 10 in their respected events.Then-junior Cheyenne Stewart came in second in the long jump with a distance of 17-11 at the 2013 Al Owens Classic.

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Other Wildcats who have competed and placed in previous Al Owens Classic meets are seniors Chelsea Farquhar and Mandy Dye and juniors Larissa Halonen, Olivia Howard, Brittni Wirtz, Emily Allen and Abby Roche. Halonen and Howard competed as freshmen in 2012.

Halonen placed 12th in the 1,500-meter in the 2012 Al Owens Classic. In last year’s Classic, Howard and Allen competed in the 5,000-meter. Howard came in third place while Allen came in ninth place. Allen said a lot of her teammates live downstate so they are excited to have some fan support at the upcoming meet.

“We’re getting further into our season and a lot of girls have been having personal records,” Allen said. “We’ve been training all year so I believe there will be some really good times.”Roche competed as a sophomore last year at the Classic, placing 13th in the 3,000-meter.

Wirtz was one of the top finishers for the Wildcats last season at the Classic when she placed second in the 200-meter dash with a time of 8.01 seconds and came in 11th in the 200-meter with a time of 26.87. Freshman Shannon Flynn said she will be training with Roche before this week’s meet.

“We have a hard workout tomorrow,” Flynn said. “Abby and I will do some hurdle work and practice steeple into the sand pits since we have the track back for a couple days.”

The ’Cats will travel to the Al Owens Classic to compete against teams in the GLIAC and other teams from around the state of Michigan including Aquinas College and Alma College, which had athletes come in first place in several events last season at the 2013 Al Owens Classic.

“This meet is going to be a lot bigger,” Flynn said. “There will be a lot more competition that gives us all a good chance of PR-ing.”The Wildcats will compete in this year’s Al Owens Classic on Saturday, April 19, and Sunday, April 20, in Allendale, Mich.

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