Track & Field: ‘Cats travel to Ohio for the Tiffin Track Carnival


Credit: North Wind

WARM UP- The ‘Cats take advantage of the warm weather and train outside. (Photo courtesy of Elise Longley.)

Chris Anderson

The NMU Women’s outdoor track and field season did not start out as expected as the team was heading to Normal, Illinois for the Redbird Challenge. The meet was ultimately canceled due to inclement weather, sending the ‘Cats back home for the week. 

“I think now it made them even hungrier for these meets coming up, so it’d be a good section,” Head Coach Jenny Ryan said. “You can’t really replace it, but I think everyone got rested, had some good training and ready to go these next weeks coming out.” 

The Wildcats were able to take an extra week off for training to prepare for the outdoor season before having to go back on the road for the Golden Grizzlies Invite in Rochester, Michigan. Wildcats Crystal Walker and Ellyse Wolfrath each grabbed podium finishes in the 100-meter hurdles, taking second and third place respectively. Walker had a time of 14.39 seconds and Wolfrath was close behind her with a time of 14.77 seconds.

“I think both of them have the potential to make it to the national championships even in that event,” Ryan said. “It doesn’t happen that often and we have a few other pretty good hurdlers too that are right behind them.” 

NMU had a strong showing all around for their first meet of the outdoor season with more than five Wildcats finishing in the top 10 in their respective events. Skylar Grubb was able to finish just outside of the podium with a sixth-place finish in the 500-meter race. The ‘Cats have shown improvement over the 2022-23 season and Ryan and the team are excited to see just how good they are going to become.

“Year to year and season to season they’ve already made improvements … or where they came off for the indoor, which is a great sign too because we’re just going to get faster though outdoor season,” Ryan said.

With the location of NMU, the team faces many challenges from the weather as the winter season can last until almost May, limiting the chances of getting acclimated to the outdoor season. Ryan and the team take any chance they have to train outdoors.

NMU will continue their season with a road trip to Tiffin, Ohio for the Tiffin Track Carnival. The Tiffin event is a two-day meet filled with many different events with top tier talent coming to out compete.

“It’d be a chance to really compete, get some competition and kind of test out like the warmup and the warmer weather too,” Ryan said. “So expect some good results again this weekend, [we’ll] see what we can do and move forward.”