EDMONTON, AB – MARCH 18, 2019
This past weekend the 2018-19 running season wrapped up as the SAIT Trojans hosted the ACAC Indoor Track Championships at the Repsol Sports Centre in Calgary. The Thunder finished the season on a high note finding the podium five times along with head coach Matthew Norminton being named ACAC coach of the year.
On Friday evening, the women's 3000 metre event kicked off the competition as Griffins Ema Steele stole the show posting a time of 10:53.16 in the finals to take the gold medal. Thunders Elise Nawrocki crossed the line at 11:52.27 for 7th place.
The year long battle of the two top runners in the conference between Matthew Travaglini of SAIT and Leonard Chesoo of Concordia continued in the men's 3000 event, however, this time it was Travaglini crossing the line first with a time of 8:33.70 for the gold medal. Chesoo would finish right behind him at 8:42.32 for the silver medal.
The women's 300 metre event saw Shayla Sklaruk of Red Deer College thrive as she clocked in at 44.33 for the gold. Mienna Starosielski was the only Thunder runner to qualify for the finals posting a time of 47.99 for 8th place
Trojans runner Brent Stephen had himself a day on the track winning the gold medal in the men's 300 event with a time of 35.61 in the finals. Brandon Morris was the only Thunder runner to qualify for this event where he posted a time of 38.86 (10th).
The women's 1000 metre final was an exciting race to watch as it was neck and neck all way to the finish line where Griffins runner Ember Large crossed first at 3.11.03 followed by Sandra Garcia of RDC (3:12.71) for silver and Thunders Ana Zulic (3:13.79) for the bronze medal.
The men's 1000 race was a thrilling event to watch as the two top runners Chesoo and Travaglini came down the stretch neck and neck however, this time it was Chesoo crossing the line first with an incredible time of 3.32.89 for the gold followed by Travaglini (2.33.97) for the silver. Thunders Keith Spruyt also had a great race posting a time of 2.51.68 for the 8th spot.
On Saturday morning the women's 600 metre event started the second day of competition where RDC's Shayla Sklaruk took the gold medal posting a time of 1:38.81. Behind her was MacEwan's Shaunice Burgers (2nd) and Ember Large (3rd). Mienna Starosielski led the way for the Thunder crossing the line at 1:48.66 (7th).
In the men's 600 metre open it was Brent Stephen of SAIT winning his second gold medal of the competition by posting a ACAC record time of 1.22.74. Brandon Morris had a great race for Concordia running a time of 1.29.53 for 5th place.
Griffins runner Ema Steele had another stellar performance in the women's 1500 metre race running a time of 5:11.20 for her second gold medal of the championships. Concordia's Ana Zulic had another great race posting a time of 5:20.20 for 7th.
Matthew Travaglini and Leonard Chesoo had one last chance to go head to head this season in the men's 1500 metre event. As expected, another exciting performance as the two were going stride for stride but it was Travaglini who would end up on top posting an ACAC record time of 3:57.91 for the gold medal. Chesoo would cross at 4:02.70 for silver and Matt Hope (RDC) at 4:08.57 for the bronze.
There is no better way to end an exciting weekend of running then with the 4X400m relay races! On the women's side, it was the RDC Queens taking the gold medal with a time of 4:20.91 followed by the Griffins (4:22.80) for silver. The Thunder team composed of Mienna Starosielski, Rebekka hay, Kennedy Hay, and Ana Zulic captured the bronze medal with a time of 4:35.57.
On the men's side it was the Griffins taking the gold medal with a time of 3:32.28 followed by the Trojans (3:36.28) and the GPRC Wolves (3:38.41). The Thunder team of Brandon Morris, Keith Spruyt, Jackson Murrell, and Leonard Chesoo crossed the line at 3:47.16 for 8th place.
The women's team from MacEwan finished the two-day event with 83 points. Red Deer College finished second with 66 points, and Concordia University of Edmonton placed third with 25 total points.
The Trojans men's team earned 69 points over the weekend, while MacEwan finished in second with 49 points. Red Deer College edged Concordia for the bronze, beating them by one point (36).
Matthew Travaglini(SAIT) and Ember Large(GMU) were named the ACAC male and female runners of the year.
Congratulations to Matthew Norminton and the Thunder running team on an incredible season.