Men seventh, women 11th in NSIC indoor track poll

Despite a third place finish last season, the Wayne State College men’s indoor track and field team was picked to finish seventh out of 11 teams in the 2017-18 NSIC Indoor Track and Field Preseason Coaches’ Poll.

Minnesota State was a unanimous selection (teams can not vote for themselves) to win the men’s division this season with 100 points and 10 of 11 first place votes. Augustana came in second at 85 points with Sioux Falls third at 72 and the remaining first place vote. The University of Mary was fourth at 63 points followed by MSU Moorhead (62), Minnesota Duluth sixth with 61 and Wayne State seventh at 50.

Senior Antoine Bardou and junior Robert Sullivan were listed as Wildcats to Watch in the NSIC this season.

Bardou, a senior middle distance runner from St. Chely D’Apcher, France, was named NSIC Men’s Indoor Newcomer of the Year last season after winning the 1,000-meter run (2:28.95) and placing fourth in the mile run (4;13.69) while setting new school records in both events.

Sullivan, a junior from Bennington, was the NSIC champion last year in the heptathlon with a new school record point total of 5,141. He also placed eighth in the 60-meter hurdles and was an NCAA Indoor National qualifier in the heptathlon, placing 12th at nationals to earn USTFCCCA second-team All-American honors.

The Wayne State women are picked to finish 11th in the conference coaches’ poll, with senior Michaela Dendinger named the Preseason Field Athlete of the Year and a Wildcat to Watch in the NSIC along with sophomore Joan Jelimo.

Minnesota State received 13 of 15 first-place votes and 194 points to be picked the team to beat this season. The University of Mary was second at 183 points and one first-place vote with Augustana third collecting the final first-place vote and 159 points. Wayne State was tied with Southwest Minnesota State for 11th with 65 points out of 15 teams that have women’s indoor track and field.

Dendinger, a senior thrower from Coleridge, was an All-NSIC performer last year in two events, placing second in the weight throw (63-4 1/4) and third in the shot put (46-0 3/4). She was an NCAA Indoor National qualifier in both events for a second straight year and named USTFCCCA second-team All-American and All-Region in both events.

Jelimo, a sophomore transfer from Gillette College in Wyoming, will compete in middle distance running events for the Wildcats this season. She was fifth in the 800-meter run (2:23) at the Region 11 meet at Gillette.

Wayne State College opens the indoor track and field season Friday at the South Dakota State Holiday Open in Brookings, S.D.

The Wayne Herald

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