Only a couple of weeks into the outdoor season and the Augustana men’s track & field team already appears to be in mid-season form. The Vikings are ranked sixth in the initial NCAA Division III dual meet power rankings of the spring.
The poll, which is conducted by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association, quantifies the depth of each team. The team’s total score is the sum of all points earned in each event. Two individual athletes are scored per event, as well as one relay team. The points are based on the best marks of an event in the current season, with the faster times and farther distances worth more.
Augustana came into the outdoor season on the heels of a very successful indoor campaign. The Vikings finished the winter ranked ninth in the power rankings with a total of 152.72 points. Not included in the final indoor rankings were the stellar performances that took place at the NCAA Division III indoor national championship on March 8-9 in Naperville, Illinois. Augustana brought home four All-Americans in three events. Alex Rindone (Marmion Academy, Geneva, Ill.) took second in the 400 meters, while Greg Patton (Bloomington HS, Bloomington, Ill.) took eighth in the same race to also achieve All-American honors. Rindone and Patton joined with David Voland (Batavia HS, Batavia, Ill.), and Keith Cline (Byron HS, Byron, Ill.) to take eighth in the 1,600 meter relay.
In the initial outdoor rankings, Augustana is the lone representative from the Midwest region, which is typically loaded with talent. Claremont-Mudd- Scripps (188.06), from the West region, begins the season on top. CMS is followed by Wabash (165.16), Lynchburg (163.86), Christopher Newport (160.10), and Penn State-Erie (159.01).
The Vikings started the outdoor season with a team victory in the Vikings Olympics on March 23 in Rock Island, Illinois. Their score of 283.5 points nearly doubled the second place total to help them handily win the 10 team meet. On Thursday, March 28, Augustana was again victorious, this time at the Augustana Easter Open. At this event, the Vikings won nine events in route to scoring 296.80 points. Augustana easily outdistance the competition at the eight team meet.
The Vikings will travel to Waverly, Iowa on Saturday, April 6 to participate in the Wartburg Select meet. This event is scheduled to begin at 1:00 p.m.