USD’s McGill claims the NCC heptathlon title

USD's McGill claims the NCC heptathlon title
Mara McGill of South Dakota won the North Central Conference women's heptathlon and three USD men's team members finished in the top-six in the decathlon as the North Central Conference Multi-event competition concluded May 2 in Yankton.

McGill won the women's seven-event heptathlon with 4,502 points with Debbie Akerly of Nebraska-Omaha, second with 4,341 points, and Kacie Merrihew of Minnesota State, Mankato, third, with 4,296 points.

In the NCC team points, USD and Nebraska-Omaha each scored 10 points with the rest of the team scores as follows: Minnesota State, Mankato, six; Augustana, five; Minnesota-Duluth, five; and St. Cloud State, three. The points will be applied to the respective team's point totals for the NCC meet which will be held in Sioux Falls in two weeks.


Josh Rasmussen of Minnesota State, Mankato, won the 10-event decathlon with 6,916 points while USD's James Vahrenkamp was second with 6,687 points. Ryan Koch of St. Cloud State was third with 6,606 points.

In the NCC team points, MSU, Mankato had 18 points with South Dakota recording 15 points and St. Cloud finishing third with six points. USD placed three student-athletes in the top-six of the men's decathlon competition. Besides Vahren-kamp, John Shubeck, a senior from Centerville, was fifth with 5,416 points and senior Brian Reimer of Chamberlain, finished sixth with 5,118 points.

"Mara (McGill) had an outstanding performance during the two-day competition," said USD head women's track and field coach Lucky Huber. "I am very pleased with how focused she stayed in the competition. The 10 team points she scored for the NCC meet is very important," added Huber.

USD men's track and field coach Dave Gottsleben was also pleased with the performance of the three USD student-athletes in the men's competition.

"All three recorded personal bests in the decathlon," he said. James (Vahren-kamp), John (Shubeck) and Brian (Reimer) all had top performances and recorded important team points as we look ahead to the NCC meet."

On Tuesday, McGill, a junior from Beresford, recorded the best javelin throw with a toss of 104'09 (513 points) and had the third-best long jump, going 17'01.25 (617 points). She was eighth in the 800-meter run with a clocking of 2:37.06 (607 points).

In Monday's competition, McGill had the top performance in both the 200-meter dash and 100-meter hurdles while finishing sixth in both the high jump and the shot put. McGill clocked a 26.28 (773 points) and had a time of 14.66 (887 points) in the 100-meter hurdles. She had a high jump of 4'10.50 (610 points) and a shot put of 31'01.25 (495 points).

For the Coyote men's team, all three competitors set personal bests with Vahrenkamp's mark of 6,687 bettering his previous mark of 6,680 at the Emporia State Open. He has the seventh-best decathlon total in Division II.

On Tuesday, he was second in three events, including the 110-meter hurdles with a 15.60 clocking (778 points); discus with a toss of 120'09 (600 points); and the pole vault, going 13'05.75 (648 points). He was third in the javelin throw with a toss of 151'02 (531 points) and fourth in the 1,500-meter run with a clocking of 4:57.91 (572 points).

On Monday, Vahrenkamp recorded the best performance in the 400-meter dash with a clocking of 50.27 (802 points). He was second in the long jump by going 21'03.25 (693 points). Vahrenkamp placed third in the other three events. He had a high jump of 6'03.25 (723 points); shot put of 39'04 (606 points) and clocked an 11.59 (734 points) in the 100-meter dash.

Shubeck stepped up on Tuesday moving from sixth to fifth place in the overall standings.

On Tuesday, he was second in the pole vault by going 13'05.75 and finished third in the 1,500-meter run with a time of 4:51.43. He was fifth in both the 110-meter hurdles with a 17.29 clocking (594 points) and the discus with a toss of 86'04 (392 points). He took sixth in the javelin with a throw of 124'03 (411 points).

On Monday, he was fifth in both the high jump by going 5'10.50 (619 points) and the shot put with a toss of 30'04.25 (441 points). He finished sixth in the long jump at 18'09.75 (529 points) and was eighth in both the 100-meter dash with a time of 12.39 (576 points) and the 400-meter dash with a clocking of 55.06 (596 points).

Reimer also moved up the standings on Tuesday, jumping from seventh to sixth-place.

He finished fourth in both the discus with a toss of 94'03 (439 points) and the javelin throw with a toss of 130'02 (437 points). He was fifth in the pole vault by going 10'06 (406 points); sixth in the 110-meter hurdles with a clocking of 17.37 (586 points); and seventh in the 1,500-meter run with a clocking of 5:06.87 (521 points).

On Monday, his top performance was fourth-place in the 100-meter dash with a time of 11.68 (715 points). He was sixth in both the 400-meter dash with a time of 52.80 (690 points) and the shot put with a toss of 30'00.25 (435 points). He also placed seventh in the long jump by going 18'01.50 and was eighth in the high jump at 4'11.75 (404 points).

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