Buerkle and Juell lead Bemidji State at Falcon Invitational
Sunday, April 10, 2011
Buerkle and Juell lead Bemidji State at Falcon Invitational
RIVER FALLS, Wis. (Ramer Field) -- The Bemidji State University men’s and women’s track and field teams were out in full force Friday and Saturday as they competed in the Falcon Multi and Falcon Invitational at Ramer Field in River Falls, Wis.  The BSU men finished eighth in the team standings, while the Bemidji State women’s team wound up 13th.

Led by a first-place finish in the decathlon by Tandy Juell (So., Redwood Falls, Minn.) and a pair of solid throwing performances by sophomore Brian Leonhardt (Blaine, Minn.), the Beaver men piled up 48.50 points to finish 80.50 points off the pace set by meet champion and Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference foe St. Cloud State University (129) and just one point out of seventh place and Bethel University (49.50).

Juell set a personal-best 6,405 points en route to winning the 10-event decathlon by more than 400 points and provisionally qualifying for the NCAA Division II Championships May 26-27 in Turlock, Calif. with the seventh-best mark in the country this season.

Juell jumped out to any early lead Friday.  After a second-place finish in the 100-meter dash (11.78), the freshman won the long jump with a leap of 21-08.25 to move into first place overall and never looked back.  By the end of the first day of competition the newcomer built a lead of 149 over the field with a total of 3,320.

Saturday, the sophomore excelled in the field events.  He scored second place in the discus (120-02) and posted back-to-back wins in the pole vault and javelin, clearing 14-08.25 in the vault before outdistancing the rest of his competition by more than 21 feet in the javelin with a throw of 170-09.

In the tenth event--the 1,500-meter run--Juell posted a stuck close enough to the lead pack with a 4:59.68 to garner the multi event title.

Leonhardt collected 12 points for the Beavers placing second in the shot pot with a toss of 51-08.25 and earning seventh place in the discus with a throw of 157-06.  

In addition, Jimmy Plain (So., Wyoming, Minn.) recorded a 41-10.00 mark in the triple jump to garner third place and seven points for the team, while Mark Buerkle (So., Stacy, Minn.) finished eighth in the 400-meter dash with a time of 50.76 and Brian Quigley (So., Coon Rapids, Minn.) and Abe Hartsell (Sr., Alexandria, Minn.) finished the 3,000-meter steeplechase in seventh and eighth with times of 10:07.43 and 10:10.86, respectively.

On the women’s side of the event, senior Kristi Buerkle (Stacy, Minn.) led the way for BSU, which posted 31 points to finish 13th in the 18-team meet, 88 points off the pace set by NSIC counterpart University of Minnesota Duluth (119).  The sprinter posted wins in the 200 and 400 before leading the Beavers’ 4x400-meter relay team to second place (4:03.70).  Buerkle provisionally qualified for the NCAA Championships in the 400-meter dash with a first-place time of 55.69 before taking the 200-meter title with a time of 24.81.  

Sophomore Taylor Sautbine (Tamarack, Minn.) also contributed to the team total.  In her first attempt at multi-event competition, Sautbine finished fifth in the heptathlon.  The sophomore got out to a quick start placing second in the 100-meter hurdles (16.38), the first event of the first day of competition.  She also took fourth in the 200 with a time of 27.80 and seventh in the shot put (29-05.25) to sit fourth after four events Friday, but slipped a spot on day two despite placing fourth in the long jump with a mark of 16-08.00.  She also placed seventh in the javelin throw (82-02) and ninth in the final event of the competition--the 800-meters (2:39.59).

The BSU men’s and women’s track teams are back in action April 16 when they travel to St. Paul, Minn. to compete in the Holst Invitational.  The meet is set to get underway at 10 a.m. at Concordia University-St. Paul’s Sea Foam Stadium.