Track & Field sees success at Nationals

Syerah Mulhern-Allred, sports reporter

Winona State University’s Track and Field season ended on a high note at Nationals in Birmingham, Alabama this weekend.
Track and Field Head Coach, Mason Rebarchek, said the team’s goal is to make it to finals.
“Anytime you get to a national meet the goal is to get to finals and be a first team All-American,” Rebarchek said. “I think that’s really any athlete’s goal.”
While none of the girls who made it to National’s were All-Americans this year, three out of the five have been All-Americans in years prior, including third-year Brooklyn Schyvinck and fourth-year Kalley Harris as indoor first team All-American and outdoor second team All-American in the 4×400 meter race together.
Of the qualifiers are Schyvinck in both the 400 meter and the 4×400 with teammates Harris, third-year Maddy Pietz and third-year Kendall Zeman.
Schyvinck ended her third season with a seventh-place finish of 56.97 which also is the seventh-fastest time in Winona State history.
She was ranked third this meet out of all the Division II girls competing in the 400m dash.
“It’s always you against the clock,” Rebarchek said. “You’re always looking to be better than you were last time.”
While all of the girls have excelled in the 2021 season, unfortunately none of them accomplished being better than the NSIC conference championship as the stakes were higher this week.
Due to COVID-19, practices are difficult when the nearby Saint Mary’s University is where the Winona State team practices.
Unfortunately, Saint Mary’s has not allowed non-students on campus.
Along with the Integrated Wellness Center shutting down, it has been a complicated season that still holds a lot of accomplishments for the girls’ team.

“The girls on the relay this weekend train in three different practice groups,” Rebarchek said. “So, they never even trained together
[as a relay team].”
Having a relay team do so well in an unusual season is impressive considering how the 4×400 team had not trained together, only competed together.
The 4×400 team ended in sixth place, also achieving the sixth best Winona State time.
The team ended at 3:48.58, only 19 seconds behind Missouri school, Lincoln University.
Also in the national’s was Michaela Pryor who has had quiet the season as she broke two school records at the NSIC (National Sun Intercollegiate Conference) in both the 200m and the 60m.
“In a year full of challenges, she went and broke school records,” Reberchek said [about Pryor]. “Of girls who had all the regular training that they were able to have.”
Pryor barely missed a place in the finals with a time of 24.80 in the 200m.
Pryor still ranks ninth in Division II rankinga for this year and third all-time at Winona State.
“I think everyone [the whole team] has kept a great attitude all season and continued to work hard,” Reberchek said. “And it’s really paid off.”
For a team to go to Nationals with two girls and a relay ranked in the top five is spectacular in a regular year, not to mention such a year of challenges.
The girls track and field team has had an extraordinary season and the wait is on to see what they accomplish next year when collegiate sports are hopefully back to “normal”, as they were prior to COVID.