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Track and Field

Irish begin indoor season with home meet

| Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Notre Dame started off its 2018-2019 indoor season this past weekend as the program hosted the Blue & Gold Invitational in the Loftus Sports Center. The Irish found success in many areas Friday night, the most notable success coming from junior Abbey Kapitan, who threw for a school record in the women’s weight throw. Kapitan threw for 19.91 meters, breaking the previous record of 19.6 meters. Irish head coach Matt Sparks said Kapitan’s record-setting performance provided a spark for the team.

“Kicking off the night with a school record in the women’s weight throw is always a positive thing whenever you can do that to start the year,” Sparks said, “I think it jumpstarted the energy for our team throughout the rest of the meet.”

Throughout the weekend, the Irish enjoyed many instances of success in what looks to be a strong start to the season for the group. Sparks said he was pleased with the overall performance put out by the athletes and coaches, saying that it was an all-around effort.

Emma Farnan | The Observer

Irish sophomore distance runner Brian Griffith competes during Notre Dame’s Meyo Invitational on Feb. 3 at the Loftus Sports Center.

“I think it was a great meet, with three new coaches on the staff and quite a few new freshmen there was a lot of uncertainty about what was gonna happen but I think from event group to event group we had a lot of positive things happen,” he said. “Several freshman on the men’s side stepped up … from Colton Crum to Conner Altman to Samuel Volz and Dylan Jacobs all won their respective events with pretty impressive marks for a first competition for the freshmen. Was a great start to the season.”

Freshman Colton Crum finished first in the pole vault, clearing 5 meters while fellow first year Conner Altman took first in the long jump with a jump of 6.92 meters. Sophomore Samuel Volz, a transfer from DePauw, finished first for the Irish in the 800-meter race, recording a time of 1:52.8, and was followed by three other Notre Dame runners to complete a sweep of the top four spots. Freshman Dylan Jacobs won the men’s 3000-meter race for Notre Dame. Other notable performances include senior Kyla Lewis, who finished first in both the women’s 60-meter and 200-meter races, sophomore Laura DeVito winning the women’s 400-meter, freshman Matthew Vietzen winning the men’s mile, senior Zachary Zajdel taking the top spot in the men’s 200-meter dash, and junior Logan Kusky triumphing in the men’s weight throw. While the track and field units competed well, Sparks stressed that the team was not at full capacity yet, as many of the long distance runners were still recovering from the recently-concluded cross country season, while a couple football players were absent.

“We just had a lot of the cross country kids finish the national meet a couple weeks earlier so we’ll feel like a very complete team once we get them out there and a few football players in January … for the sprints,” Sparks said. “We’re still a little bit short in some of the sprinting events on the men’s side but the football team will hopefully help us out there once their season winds down. We’ll be looking at a complete roster at that time.”

The Irish will participate in their next indoor meet in January when they travel to West Lafayette, Ind. to compete in the Gene Edmonds Open on Jan. 12.

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