Many athletes achieved season and personal bests, set school records and met national track and field meet qualifications for Tabor College this weekend at the conference championship at Bethel College.
Junior Garrett Daugherty was named the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference most valuable athlete after scoring the most points in the meet. He anchored the winning 4x800-meter relay team, won the 1,500-meter run, placed second in the 800, ran the second leg of the school record-breaking 4x100-meter relay team, and anchored the 4x400-relay team. Both the latter relay teams placed second.
Senior Alex Grier contributed his share of points to the men’s fourth-place finish as well. He won the 200 with a time of 21.83 seconds, placed second in the 100, anchored the 4x100 team, and ran the third leg of the 4x400.
Tyler Entz placed first in the high jump with a 6-foot, 6-inch jump, and freshman Caleb Blue was second in the 400-meter dash.
The women finished seventh out of the 10 KCAC schools, led by senior Kristen Harris, who won the pole vault with an 11-foot vault. She also placed second in the 400 hurdles, setting a school record in the qualifying race and in the finals.
Brielle Lund received bronze medals for her performances in the 1,500 and 5,000-meter races. Hannah Holmes placed fifth in the 10k run, and Ashton Kroeker placed sixth in the high jump.
Coach Dave Kroeker said the teams could have benefited from seniors Nathan Vogel, Joel Allen, and Makenzie King, who were sidelined by injury.
So far, Holmes and Lund have met national meet qualification standards in the marathon race, along with Grier in the 100. Athletes will compete in a Last Chance meet for national qualifications Saturday at Emporia State University.
Baseball team wins conference tournament
The Tabor baseball team won the KCAC tournament championship this weekend after three consecutive battles with Friends University.
The Bluejays won the opening round game Thursday against Bethany College 6-3, before defeating Friends 9-3 Friday. The Falcons emerged from the loser bracket of the double elimination tournament, needing to defeat the Bluejays twice to win the championship.
They succeeded in the first game, rallying in the final inning for a 3-2 upset. Tabor controlled the second game though, winning 19-7. The Bluejays play next on Monday in the opening round of the NAIA national tournament at Hobart-Detter Field in Hutchinson.
Softball team falls short of tournament win
Coming into the conference tournament as the fifth seed, the Tabor softball team fought through the loser bracket of the conference tournament to play in the championship game Saturday.
The Lady Jays first lost to Bethany 4-2 Thursday, but then defeated McPherson 11-7 and Friends 3-2. Friday, the team won 8-1 against the University of St. Mary and 2-1 against second-seeded Ottawa University to face Kansas Wesleyan in the tournament final.
Tabor could not continue its streak though, losing 7-3 to the Coyotes, ending their season.