Bemidji State men dominate NSIC decathlon
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
ABERDEEN, S.D. - Bemidji State University's Zac Preble (So., Coleraine, Minn.) won his second consecutive Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference decathlon championship this week, out scoring the rest of the 10-man field by nearly 1,000 points. His dominant performance only headlined a BSU men's contingent that accounted for first place in nine of the ten events and garnered 12 team points to be carried forward to the NSIC Outdoor Track and Field Championships, May 9-10 in Wayne Neb.

Preble owned a 404-point lead after the first day of competition, collecting season-best results in the shot put (46-feet, 10 and 3/4 inches) and 400-meer dash (51.50) to place first place in each. On day two he widened the gap to 960 over the rest of the field, riding first-place finishes in four of five events. Tuesday he took first place in the 110-meter hurdles (16.01), discus throw (138-08), pole vault (14-03.5) and javelin throw (149-10), posting personal 2008-best marks in the 110 hurdles and pole vault.

Preble completed the 10-event contest with a total of 6,669--just three points off a conference and school record he set at the league championships a year ago.

In addition to wining the conference crown and earning 10 points for the Beavers, his 6,669 provisionally qualified him for the NCAA Division II National Championships, May 22-24 in Pamona, Calif. His score currently seats him seventh among the best NCAA Division II student-athletes in the nation.

Gaining two points for BSU with a fifth-place finish was Rhegy Gelo (Pecora, Minn.). The sophomore recorded season-bests in the long jump (17-08), shot put (38-05.5) and the 400-meters (53.27) finishing as high as second place in both the shot and 400.

Tommy Crummy (Sr., Argyle, Minn.) found himself in contention for team points after taking first in the 100-meter dash (11.43), long jump and high jump (6-0.75) on day one, but was eliminated from contention on the second day of competition when he "no-heighted" in the pole vault.

BSU also had a pair of females that participated in the conference heptathlon championships in Aberdeen, S.D.

Becca Hougen (Jr., Bemidji, Minn.) finished just out of team point contention with a seventh-place total of 3,704, while Pearl Walker (Fr., Bemidji, Minn.) racked up 2,840 points to take 10th.

Hougen excelled in the running events, placing third in the 100-meter hurdles, turning in a 2008-best time of 15.95, while her time of 2:32.07 in the 800-meter run was good for fourth.

Walker recorded personal-bests in three events. Her 73-01 in the javelin accounted for her top finish at the championships--eighth.

The BSU track and field teams will be back in action Friday (May, 2) when they travel to St. Peter, Minn. to compete in the Gustie Twilight, hosted by Gustavus Adolphus College.