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Track and Field

Irish to travel to Lousiville for ACC Indoor Championships

| Thursday, February 23, 2023

The Irish track and field team will kick off their indoor championship season this weekend at the ACC Indoor Track and Field Championships in Louisville, Kentucky.

An athlete with high aspirations for the meet is junior thrower Michael Shoaf, who set a school record in the shotp ut last weekend at the Alex Wilson Invitational with a throw of 20.05 meters. Shoaf won the shot put event at the outdoor ACC Championships last year, and head coach Matt Sparks hopes he can win an indoor title next. Last year, Shoaf finished fifth at the indoor meet with a throw of 18.88 meters.

“This would be his first indoor ACC championship if he can pull that off,” Sparks said.

On the women’s side, sophomore jumper Madison Schmidt will look to win her first ACC title in the high jump, where she is seeded first in the event. Last year, Schmidt finished sixth in the meet with a jump of 1.75 meters.

Sophomore Jadin O’Brien will also be a name to watch this weekend in the women’s pentathlon. Last year, O’Brien won the pentathlon in dominating fashion, championing three of the five events and placing second in the other two.

On the track, Sparks is excited to see sophomore Carter Solomon in the 5000m race. Solomon ran an impressive time of 13:26.11 in the 5K a few weeks ago in Boston.

“Carter Solomon might not be the number-one seed, but he is the conference cross country champion, and I think in the 5K he can make a run at winning that event,” Sparks said.

Sparks is also excited to see sophomore Siona Chisholm in the 3000m race. Chisholm has won the majority of her races his year, but she hasn’t had much competition. This weekend, she should have plenty, with NC State runner and NCAA 3000m record holder Katelyn Tuohy likely competing in the event.

“It will be nice to see her at the ACC meet,” Sparks said. “She’ll get to race with [junior] Olivia [Markezich] and all the other elite girls in the conference. Katelyn Tuohy … will [most likely] be out there with them racing. It will be a good chance for [Siona] to hopefully get pulled to a fast time.”

Markezich should also finish high for the Irish. Last season, Markezich placed fifth in the 3000m race with a time of 9:10.76.

The Irish have had plenty of home meets this season, and Sparks believes his team has gained a lot of confidence from competing at home nearly every other week.

“That confidence that we have developed during those three to four home meets will hopefully bleed over into the conference meet,” he added.

Beyond the conference meet, a select group of Irish athletes will head out to Albuquerque, New Mexico to compete in the nationals meet before a quick turnaround to outdoor competition.

“The nice thing is that there are only a couple of weeks off. If we go to the conference meet and compete the way we should, we will get a three-week break, which will hopefully allow us to maintain our fitness,” Sparks said. “Then we will pick up in outdoor track right where we left off.”

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About Nate Moller

Nate is a junior majoring in chemical engineering. He is originally from a suburb of St. Paul, Minnesota and is currently living in Siegfried Hall. Some of his passions include running, cross country skiing, and getting too worked up about Notre Dame and Minnesota sports teams.

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