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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT Birgitta Gray O: (406) 896-5917 E: birgitta.gray@msubillings.edu February 15, 2017 Yellowjackets ready for GNAC Championships MSUB Track and Field on Facebook | MSUB Track and Field on ISSUU | GNAC Program | Tickets GNAC Indoor Championships Schedule | GNAC Indoor Championships Start List

Freshman Taylor Stringari is one of 34 MSUB track and field athletes headed to the GNAC Indoor Championships.

The MSUB track and field teams are heading for the 2017 GNAC Indoor Track and Field Championships Feb. 17 and 18 in Nampa, Idaho. BILLINGS, Mont. – The MSU Billings track and field teams are set to compete at the 2017 Great Northwest Athletic Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships Feb. 17 and 18 at the Jackson Sports Complex in Nampa, Idaho. The competition begins on Friday for MSUB with the running events at 2:30 p.m. Thirty-four Yellowjacket studentathletes are entered in the conference meet. “The teams look to be in great shape right now and we’re seeing some of our best performances at this point,” MSUB head coach Dave Coppock said. “We had a large number of athletes who posted their season’s best marks, to date, last weekend at the Mountain States Games at Idaho State. I think the combination of a fast track and the higher level of DI competition really helped push us. We came away with three new school records and a provisional national qualifier, so we have some good momentum going into the GNAC Championships this week.”


At the GNAC championships, in the sprints, the top-8 advance to the finals. In the middle and long distances, multiple heats are run with the best times overall being awarded points. The top-8 in each individual event earn points (10, 8, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1) while the top-3 are awarded all-conference honors. In the relay events, the winning team members earn allconference accolades. “We still have a very young team with a lot of freshman and sophomores qualifying for the championships and the challenge will be to get people into a position where they can score some points,” Coppock continued. “Only the top-8 score and we’re got a lot of athletes currently ranked in that 9-12 position going in. But, with the weekly improvements we’ve been seeing, we could move a few people in there.” Of the 14 MSUB women entered in the championships, only Rio Frame is an upperclassmen. MSU Billings currently has 13 athletes ranked in the GNAC’s top-10. Sprinter Sam Zook is ranked second in the 60 meters with a MSUB record time of 6.85. Zook has lowered his own record in that event twice this season and heads into the meet with the fourth-fastest time in GNAC history and a NCAA provisional qualifying time. The junior from Casper, Wyo., is ranked 34th in the nation after his race at the Mountain State Games. Freshman Chuck Carr also has a NCAA provisional mark and is third in the GNAC. The native of Bozeman, Mont., holds the MSUB school record in the high jump with a mark of 6-8.00 and this week is 35th in the nation. Not far behind him is fellow freshman Isaiah Girard who is ranked sixth at 6-6.00. Thrower Nels Flanagan is third in the men’s weight throw with a distance of 52-05.25, also a MSUB record. Senior Austin Lindquist is sixth in the conference in the 60 meter hurdles at 8.62, an MSUB record. On the women’s team, freshman Michaela Johnson is also sixth in the 60 meter hurdles in a MSUB record time 9.15. In the jumps, Marcus Lindquist is ninth (42-08.75) in the triple jump. MSUB record holder Janessa Williams is 10th (35.10). In the men’s shot put, Brady Ostermiller is 10th with a toss of 46-11. “The distance events will be extremely tough this year with five or six NCAA national qualifiers in every event, so anything we can come away with in those events will be a great accomplishment,” Coppock commented. MSUB has four men entered in the men’s 3,000 meters in Jorey Egeland, Garrett Love, Ivan Colmenero and Tyus Mendoza. In the women’s 3,000 meters is Frame and Nikki Aiken. In the relays, the Yellowjackets have teams entered in the 4 x 400 meters and the distance medley relay. The 2017 GNAC Indoor Track and Field Championships open on Feb. 17, with the heptathlon. MSUB begins competition at 2:30 p.m. with the women’s 60 hurdles. The field events begin at 3:30 p.m. with the women’s weight throw. For a listing of all the events, start and performance lists, as well as results, please visit the GNAC Indoor Track and Field Championships page here. --@MSUBSports | #JacketNation--


Yellowjackets ready for GNAC Championships