In a final tune-up for the Nationals series, a contingent of Spartan men and women drove an hour to Mount Pleasant to compete in the Chip Trails Invitational. Both the Spartan men and women completely dominated the invite, with both teams taking home easy victories. Even though both courses were inaccurately marked, nullifying any results, Both teams raced with passion and verve in route to their wins.
The first race was the men’s 8(?)K, initially billed as a showdown between Riley VanPelt and Lucas Werner. That showdown did come to pass as they took the race out quickly, however, fellow Spartans Ben Lambert and Wes Diener were not far behind. As the race wore on, Werner opened up a small lead on VanPelt, and Diener continued to give chase, closing the gap. In the final 500 meters, a shout of “come on!” echoed over the course as Diener passed VanPelt heading for the line. At the end, neither could catch Werner who paced the race and the Spartan men, and was followed by a kicking VanPelt in second and Diener in third. Rounding out the top 7 was Ben Lambert, freshman Matt Sowles, Colin Crusoe, and Jacob Broman.
On the ladies side in the 6(?)K, a similar story unfolded. The Spartan women were out early and in front, and stayed that way throughout the race. Usual suspects Charlotte Etienne, Amanda Montgomery, and Bailey Montgomery paced the Spartans, while 6K debutant Gina Pellillo followed closely behind. At the finish, it was obvious that the Spartan women dominated the race, placing four in the top 10. Etienne, who finished second overall, paced the team. Rounding out the top 7 were A. Montgomery, B. Montgomery, Pellillo, Robin DeClercq, Rianna Pfau, and Liz Sculli.
All in all, the Spartans who showed up at Mount Pleasant, from those who wanted to run a good time to those who “wanted to do it for Bill Clinton”, left satisfied with both individual and team performances. Jacob Young updated those at home via Twitter to the exploits of our runners. Congratulations to all who competed today, stay tuned for a regionals update soon!
Over the weekend, the Spartan men and women drove down to Huron Meadows Metropark to compete in some NIRCA action. In a six-team invitational featuring the Spartans, Wolverines, Chippewas, Rockets, Redbirds, and Falcons, the Spartans once again had a good showing. They left the metropark with a second place finish for the men and another first place finish for the women.
Contrary to the usual season running, the women took to the course first. Following a usual trend, however, the Spartan women were out early and in numbers. Usual suspects Erin Zimmer, Tarah Thompson, and Charlotte Etienne were in the top five early, tracked closely by newcomer Megan Schwartz and standout freshman Amanda Montgomery. These ladies did not give up their hard earned positions, and led the Spartan women to victory. Other noteworthy performers were two freshman, Bailey Montgomery (25:29) in 17th and Sarah Ausum (26:42) in 24th. The top seven for the women were Zimmer (23:22, 2nd), Thompson (23:42, 3rd), Etienne (24:14, 5th), Schwartz (24:29, 8th), A. Montgomery (24:36, 10th), Nicole Mosteller (24:38, 11th) and B. Montgomery (25:29, 17th). The women had a 73 second split on five.
Shortly thereafter, the men took to the course for some 8k action. At the onset, the Cerberus of Jacob Young, Lucas Werner, and Tall Paul Salach were in a tight pack, one that would not falter throughout the race. Riley VanPelt, and two freshman Alec Reilly and Joe Hegger followed them, rounding out the seven for the men. The Spartans stayed strong through the rolling hills of this race as they took a true cross-country course. Other notable finishers in the race were freshman Colin Crusoe, finishing 8th on the team, and former all-state runner Dietrich Hittner making his 8k debut, finishing 9th on the team. The top seven for the men were Young (27:40, 6th), Salach (27:41, 8th), Werner (27:51, 11th), VanPelt (28:25, 19th), Reilly (28:51, 24th), Hegger (28:54, 25th), and President Ben Lambert (29:20, 29th). The men had a split of 45 seconds on five.
Again, congratulations to all those who competed, there were many PRs across the board. Both teams ran exceptionally well and left with two more trophies. Both teams figure to keep running well heading into regionals and nationals, stay tuned for further updates. Until next week – Club or Die!
Last weekend, the Spartan men and women took to Grand Woods Park for some early morning cross-country action. In a seven-team invitational featuring the Spartans, Wolverines, Fighting Irish, Chippewas, Lakers, Rockets, and Ramblers, the Spartan men and women both showed out in a big way on the 5k course. Overall, the men finished second and the women took home first place honors as teams.
The men kicked off the day after a rousing National Anthem sung by our own Lucas Werner. After the whistle started the race, yells of “Go Green! Go White!” and “Club or Die!” sounded over the opening 100 meters from Spartan men clad in retro uniforms. Jacob Young paced the Spartans early, followed closely by Paul Salach and Lucas Werner. As the race spread out, it became apparent that the Wolverines and Spartans were the top two teams, with the Wolverines pack placing ahead of the Spartan Pack and winning the meet 19 points to 55 points. Race highlights included Ben Lambert good for 7th on the team, running 17:48, and freshman Jacob Broman running 18:04 and placing 9th on the team. The Spartan top five included three medalists: Young, 6th overall (16:32), Salach, 11th overall (16:44), and Werner, 12th overall (16:45). Fourth man Riley VanPelt finished just out of the medal race in 16th (16:53), and Wes Diener (17:15) was 27th overall as the fifth man.
After a short delay, the women took the course for a rousing race. The Spartan women, unranked by NIRCA, were looking to show those folks down at the University of Illinois that they were for real, and boy, did this team deliver. At the whistle, the women got out hard, evidenced by Erin Zimmer and Tarah Thompson being 2nd and 3rd respectively at 800 meters, positions they would not relinquish. A solid pack followed shortly thereafter, and held throughout the duration of the race. All in all, the Spartan women finished ahead of the 4th ranked Wolverines, 26 points to 50 points. The entire women’s top seven medaled, led by Zimmer (18:57) finishing 2nd overall. Zimmer was followed by Thompson (19:14) in 3rd, Charlotte Etienne (19:34) 5th, Amanda Montgomery (19:54) 7th, Erin O’Donnel (19:58) 9th, Nicole Mosteller (20:03) 10th, and Bailey Montgomery (20:29) 15th.
Overall, 64 Spartan men and women raced, leading to a first place finish for the women and second for the men. Congratulations to all who competed, and a big thank you to Ben Lambert, Natalie Whise, and Paul Salach, as well as the rest of the executive board, for putting on a wonderful race!
The Spartan men and women took to Forest Akers East on September 16th for their first official action of the season at the Spartan Invitational. Here the Spartans would take on a multitude of teams from the community college to division one level. First to toe the line were the men, excited to see the trajectory this season was going to take. At the gun, junior Jacob Young and senior Paul Salach went out quickly, setting the tone for the men. President Lambert was late to the race, but played an instrumental role alongside Tommy Brettschneider taking race video, which caught plenty of Spartan men flexing and dabbing their way through the race. In the end, Young was the first Spartan to finish in 27:59, followed by Salach (28:20), Lucas Werner (28:46), Alec Reilly (29:09), and Wes Diener (29:15) rounding out the top five. Young and Salach both took down at least one man on the D1 MSU team, quite an accomplishment for those two. Overall, 20 men competed in an excellent initial showing for the club men.
On the women’s side another competitive race unfolded. Looking to make a statement, usual suspects Erin Zimmer, Nicole Mosteller and Tarah Thompson were in the mix of the race early on. Flying under the radar was freshman Charlotte Etienne. Rocking some retro Spartan gear, she was a part of this strong Spartan pack. The race video caught the determined faces of man Spartan women, and even some smiling for the cameras. Zimmer paced the team in style, finishing in 23:43 for the 6k distance, good for 92nd overall and a finish ahead of a woman on the D1 team. Etienne (24:04), Thompson (24:31), freshman Amanda Montgomery (24:37), and Mosteller (25:12) followed her. 23 Spartan women competed at the invitational.
Next, both the men and women look forward to the Spartan Grand Classic where both groups will compete in the 5k distance against other club competition.
Check out this State News article about some of our favorite running routes: http://statenews.com/article/2016/08/scenic-routes-for-running-off-campus
Informational Meeting: Wednesday, August 31, 5 PM, room 115 International Center
First Practice: Thursday, September 1, 5PM IM West
Tailgate: Friday, September 2nd before the game against Furman. More details to come!
Wolverine Invitational 2/6/16
After a promising showing at SVSU and a week of grueling workouts, 39 Spartans of the MSU Running Club headed to Ann Arbor for the first club track meet of the season. The men got things started in the DMR (Brett Roginski, Ben Richardson, Bram Parkinson, Ben Lambert), which was neck and neck with CMU until Lambert sat on CMU’s anchor for 6 laps, flashed a goofy grin to his teammates, and took off to pull away from CMU and seal the win. Other highlights from the Wolverine Invitational included Erin Zimmer’s win in the mile, Audrey Fisher’s 20 second mile PR, and John Costello breaking his own shot put record for the win and finishing off with an impressive split in the 4x400m relay.
One Week Later
GVSU Big Meet Saturday 2/13/16
Seven days after the Wolverine Invitational, 10 Spartan men and 7 lady Spartans made the trip to Grand Valley’s 300m indoor track for the GVSU Big Meet Saturday. This time around, the MSU Running Club saw 5 more records go down:
Women’s 60m: Melanie Sprinkle, 8.63
Women’s 800m: Tarah Thompson, 2:22.98
Women’s 200m: Melanie Sprinkle, 29.13
Men’s Long Jump: Connor Kikta, 5.58m
Men’s High Jump: Connor Kikta, 1.70m
On the track, Melanie Sprinkle got the lady Spartans off to a good start, resetting her own club record in the 60m dash. Shortly thereafter, Sarah Wallace hit the track for another shot at the 3k. Hours later, the Spartan women returned to the track with seniors Tarah Thompson and Christina Casali lining up for their first event of the day. The women’s 800m saw a pair of PR’s for Casali and Thompson, Thompson demolishing her own club record by 5 seconds. Sprinkle returned to the track to set yet another club record in the 200m dash as she continues to improve in the sprints each week. Thompson and Casali returned to the track for the women’s mile along with Jenna Chapman, sophomore Kaylee Dykema, and senior Stacie Hegler (PR). All women ran well, especially Dykema and Hegler who displayed great teamwork out on the track to close out the meet for the Spartan women.
On the men’s side, newcomer Connor Kikta lead the Spartans off to a good start on the field, breaking the club records in both long jump and high jump. Also on the field, John Costello had a solid performance in the shot put. Out on the track, Eric Hyames represented the Spartan men in the 60m dash with a strong effort. Paul Salach continued his impressive season and led the Spartan men in the 3k, notching his 3rd PR of the season. Salach was followed by Lucas Werner and Riley VanPelt who both logged solid times in their 3k debut. Richardson (PR) and Adam Blaida took to the track next in the 800m where both men ran well. Hyames returned to the track for his final event of the day with another tough performance in the 200m dash. The last event of the day for the Spartans saw all 6 men competing in the same heat of the mile. VanPelt came back from a tough 3k and ran out of his mind to lead the Spartans with a big PR. VanPelt was followed by teammates Salach (PR), Lambert (PR), Richardson, Werner, and Tommy Brettschneider.
Up next for the MSU Running Club will be Illinois Club Relays on 2/27/16, where the Spartans hope to establish a strong presence amongst some of the most prominent clubs in the country.
Last week’s Intrasquad meet had 34 Spartans ready to compete in our season opener at SVSU’s The Cardinal (Jet’s Pizza Invitational). 22 Spartan men participated in 12 events while 12 Spartan ladies competed in 8 events. 7 more Spartans, including third turn coach Ryan Squanda, showed up to cheer on their teammates and take splits. As the long day progressed it was clear that all the laps in Jenison were starting to pay off as 6 club records were broken, 4 women’s and 2 men’s:
Women’s 60m: Melanie Sprinkle, 8.80
Women’s 5000m: Erin Zimmer, 18:45.9
Women’s 400m: Gina Pellillo, 1:04.65
Women’s 4x400m: Pellillo, Zimmer, Casali, Thompson, 4:26.2
Men’s 5000m: Justin Waraniak, 15:34.3
Men’s Shot Put: John Costello, 12.63m
The men got things off to a good start with a DMR starring newcomers Brett Roginski, Denzel Harris, Lucas Werner and returning sophomore Ben Richardson, who all ran well. Senior Pat Frahm represented the Spartan men in the 60m dash with a new PR. The 5k was next and there was no shortage of excitement as newcomer and graduate student Justin Waraniak broke the club record and kept up with the varsity guys, finishing 8th overall. In the following heat, senior marathoner Kevin Glime took the lead in the first few laps for a solid overall performance, while junior Wes Diener achieved a long-overdue 5k PR. Freshman Riley VanPelt faced his first rivalry of the day as he held off junior Paul Salach in the mile, both guys setting new PR’s. Running his first track meet in two years, Ben Lambert notched a solid mile, followed by Roginski. The sprint crew, including Harris, sophomore Devin McClenton, and grad student Marco Lopez-Cruz all showed promising performances in the open 400. Phil Baeza was the first Spartan to cross the line in the 800, followed by Richardson in his second event of the day. The trash-talking continued for VanPelt, who again managed to hold his ground and defeat sophomore Lucas Werner and freshman Tommy Brettschneider in the open 800, solidifying the target on his back. Back to the sprints, Harris, McClenton and Frahm returned to the track for the 200m dash in addition to sophomore Logan Soldo (PR) and freshman Eric Hyames. The men’s 3000m saw another PR for Salach who was followed by junior Lucas Bowman and senior Kristian Wosik. The last event on the track for the men was the 4x400m relay, where VanPelt was finally dethroned by Brettschneider in the opening leg of the relay. The Spartan men put together 3 teams for the 4x400m (Baeza, Lopez-Cruz, Lambert, McClenton. Brettschneider, Werner, Erik Heckel, Soldo. VanPelt, Frahm, Bowman, Hyames), and all raced well. On the field, newcomer senior John Costello smashed the club shot put record in his first meet as a Spartan. In addition to their running events, Frahm, Richardson and Werner also took on the long jump.
On the women’s side, sophomore Melanie Sprinkle and junior Madi McLean represented the Lady Spartans in the 60m dash, Sprinkle taking down the club record. Yet another club record was set when sophomore and returning all-american Erin Zimmer took to the track for the women’s 5k, finishing 8th overall. The open mile saw 6 Spartan women competing, led by senior Tarah Thompson racing her first track meet in two years. Thompson (PR) was followed by freshmen Erin O’Donnel and sophomore Natalie Whise who both raced incredibly well. Sophomore Audrey Fisher (PR) impressed in her first meet since middle school, followed by sophomore Jenna Chapman and freshman Christina Arthurs. The lone Lady Spartan in the 400 was sophomore Gina Pellillo who broke her own club record. Shortly after racing the mile, Thompson, O’Donnel, Fisher (PR), and Whise all returned to the track to race in the 800m and put down some notable times. Pellillo and Sprinkle returned to finish strong in the open 200m. Seniors Christina Casali and Sarah Wallace took to the track for their first event of the day as they toughed it out in the 3000m. After a long day at the Ryder center, Pellillo, Zimmer, Casali, and Thompson represented the Lady Spartans one last time in 4x400m relay and ended things on a good note with another new club record.
Overall it was a great season opener for the MSU Running Club. The Spartans will head to Ann Arbor tomorrow with confidence as they take on rival MRun in the first club race of the season.
-Spartan Runner, 2/5/16
This cross country season, the Michigan State University Running Club had just under 200 dues-paying members. This is the highest number the club has had thus far in its history, and is almost double the number of members during the 2012-13 school year (when the current seniors were freshman). Also for the first time, female club officers outnumber male club officers with five to four.
When recruiting for the club, students are encouraged to join based on both social and competitive aspects offered, and the club received a balanced demographic between the two this season. About 51 members arrived in costume for a Halloween run around campus during the last week of October (Sophomore Melanie Sprinkle and Freshman Nick Kilpatrick won the costume contest as Batman and Robin), and members participated in team dinners, front-row football game seating, a chalk run, a corn maze, as well as other social events.
For competition, the club offered five meets this year: Spartan Invitational in East Lansing (41 members); MC5 in Anderson, Indiana (19 members); Spartan Grand Classic in Lansing, Michigan (92 members); NIRCA Regionals in Indianapolis, Indiana (35 members); and NIRCA Nationals in Lexington, Kentucky (67 members).
At Nationals, freshmen Lauren McGrath and Erin O’Donnel competed in the women’s “A” race with Erin Zimmer (SP), Nicole Mosteller(SP), Tarah Thompson (SR), Christina Casali (SR), and Sarah Wallace (SR). The women placed 9th, and Zimmer and Mosteller received All-American titles, placing 12th and 25th overall. New MSU club members Justin Waraniak (graduate student) and freshmen Riley VanPelt and Zach Kuloszewski competed in the men’s “A” race with returning members Jacob Young (SP), Paul Salach (JR) Adam Terwillegar (SR), and Kevin Glime (SR),. The men placed 19th.
The Spartans look forward to the upcoming track seasons with their heads up and their hearts hungry for more competition and fun.