On March 9 and 10, four Geneseo track and field athletes traveled to Grinnell, Iowa for the NCAA Division III Indoor Championships.
Senior Lee Berube earned the lone All-American honor for the Knights in the 5,000-meter run. Berube’s fourth-place finish earned five points for the Geneseo men’s team, which tied for 33rd overall.
“[Berube’s] solidifying his place as the best distance runner in our school’s history, which is saying something given some of the talented male distance runners that we’ve had,” head coach Dave Prevosti said. “[Berube] and Ted Turner [‘04] … just outstanding student-athletes for sure.”
Despite hurting his knee a week before nationals, senior Eddie Novara finished strong with a 10th place finish in the 5,000. According to Prevosti, Novara’s health has improved a lot.
Senior Wenley Louis, who held the top distance in the long jump for the season, claimed 10th place in his event.
“Definitely he was disappointed … He gave his best,” Prevosti said. “He didn’t jump anywhere near he had done, but that’s because of his injury. It’s the silliest little thing, just a heel bruise … It was enough to keep him [back].”
Despite Louis’ injury incurred during SUNYACs, he kept up with some of the best jumpers in the country. Louis’ 6.87-meter leap brought him one spot away from qualifying for the finals.
On the women’s side, junior Cailin Kowalewski represented the Knights alone. Kowalewski finished the 800-meter run in 2 minutes, 16.58 seconds, earning 13th place.
“[For Kowalewski] just getting there was something,” Prevosti said. “Usually when people get there the first time, their eyes are a little big and all of that. I have no doubt when she gets back there the next time, she’ll be just fine. Mostly she’s been an inspiration to everyone else, too.”
With the completion of the indoor season, the Knights shift their focus outdoors.
“We love outdoor,” Prevosti said. “There are so many more venues … The meets aren’t ridiculously overcrowded, so it doesn’t make for 16-hour days with travel and all that. So that’s something we’re looking forward to.”
The first outdoor meet for the Knights is on Saturday March 31 at the Washington and Jefferson College Invitational (Pennsylvania).
According to Prevosti, this invitational is a competitive Division III meet and acts as a stepping stone for the season.
“Between now and then, we’re looking to work some people in for outdoor that weren’t on the indoor team. That of course means having to do some cuts, as well. It’s not something we look forward to, but it’s something we have to do.”
Prevosti continued, “I talked to the team yesterday. I said, ‘We got 46 days until SUNYACs, but Day 1 is today. This is a new season. What we did good or bad last season is behind us. We gotta move forward. We gotta be better tomorrow than we are today.’”