The Chargers traveled south for some warm weather and stiff competition at the Vanderbilt Black and Gold Invitational.
On the first day of competition, freshman Ben Raffin and senior Jared Schipper both earned NCAA Division II provisional marks in pole vault. Raffin cleared 4.90 and Schipper sailed over 5.05 meters. Schipper placed second overall and Raffin took third place.
The 200m run was the only running event the Chargers participated in on Friday, and it showed a lot of promise. Senior Nathan Pando opened his final outdoor season faster than he ever has before. Finishing 25th out of 55 runners, he sped around the track in 22.29. Sophomore Adam Wade and freshman Jacob Schmidt finished 40th and 42nd, respectively. Wade crossed the finish line in 22.79 and Schmidt was right behind in 22.86.
Hillsdale's 4-by-100m relay got things started off on the track Saturday afternoon. After practicing their hand offs indoors only a few times, the Chargers found much success with smooth transitions around the track. The team of senior Levi Wyse, Pando, junior Ian Brown and Schmidt with a strong season-opening time of 42.02 seconds.
Freshman John Baldwin took third place overall in the 110 meter hurdles (14.72s), just shy of hitting another provisional mark. In the 400m hurdles, junior David Downey took 17th in 58.01 seconds, and freshman Kevin Curby earned a new personal best time of 59.52 seconds to take 20th.
Wade ran the 400m dash as well, finishing in 50.31 seconds to tie for 16th place.
In Saturday's field events, sophomore Ryan Thomsen placed sixth in the high jump. He cleared 1.95 meters which is just shy of his personal best of 1.96.
The men's 4-by-400m relay team made up of Wyse, Wade, Pando, and Baldwin finished out the Chargers' trip to Nashville. They placed ninth overall with a time of 3:21.27.
PHOTO: Todd Lancaster
WORDS: Calli Townsend