First-year sets records with track and field team

Barry Allen, Sports Reporter

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It has not taken long for first-year runner Maddy Pietz to make a positive impact on the Winona State University track and field team.

The rookie runner from a small town in Wisconsin called Birnamwood. She started running track and field when she was in the sixth grade.

On Saturday, April 6, Pietz and the Warriors took on competition at the Ashton May Invite in La Crosse, Wisconsin. Pietz and the team outperformed the opposition, with Pietz finishing second overall in the 100m race with a time of 11.98 seconds.

The time placed Pietz in the Winona State record books with the fourth-best outdoor 100m time in program history.

“The 11.98 actually tied my personal record, so I knew I could run that fast, but I didn’t know I’d be doing it so early on in the outdoor season. It makes me really excited for the rest of the season,” Pietz said.

That was not the only event that she placed well in at the Ashton May Invite though, as a team of Pietz, seniors Tamika Tucker, Brittany Schyvinck and first-year Shereen Vallabouy took home the first-place medals for the 4x100m. The team finished with a time of 47.06 seconds.

With the first-year runner having success early on in her career at Winona State, Pietz spoke on the adjustment from high school to college.

“The adjustment to college in general was tough at first, but eventually I settled in,” Pietz said. “Going from high school to college track has been crazy. Everyone is so much faster and everyone works hard to compete to the best of their ability.”

With only being on the team less than a year so far, Pietz said she has enjoyed her time on the Winona State track team.

“The track team is one big family,” Pietz said. “We are all friends and the atmosphere at practice is so positive and supportive. My favorite part of being on the team is that my teammates are also some of my best friends.”

Pietz and the Warriors are back in action on Friday, April 19 at the Bryan Clay Invitational in Azusa, California.