Track And Field Travels To UNI For Final Tune-Up
For the Drake University men’s and women’s track and field teams, it’s all about maintenance at this point in the season. Maintaining health, a competitive mindset and confidence to head into the final weeks of the season in prime condition.
Following last weekend’s Musco Twilight meet in Iowa City, where hammer thrower Andy Curtis threw a huge personal best of 196-3, the Bulldogs have taken this week head-on with challenging practices in preparation for Friday’s Messersmith Invitational at UNI. The Friday afternoon meet starts 11 a.m. with field events followed by track events at 1 p.m.
“When you go to competitions, you have a certain rush of adrenaline and you’re all excited,” head coach Natasha Kaiser-Brown said. “Rather than cutting that off and keeping everything the same as we flipped our tough training days to Monday/Wednesday,” head coach Natasha Kaiser-Brown said. “We’re trying to inspire them and encourage them a little bit more with a little bit more training.”
This weekend’s meet is the only competition standing between the Bulldogs and the Missouri Valley Conference Championship in Carbondale, Ill. While some Drake athletes have secured their spots on the roster for the MVC Championship, others are hoping to secure their spot this weekend at UNI. .
“We’re in a really good spot,” Kaiser-Brown said. “I’m hoping that the level of confidence going into the conference meet will actually increase. We’re having a little bit of difficulty because we’re at the point now where there’s finite things that need to change, they’re just little, small things. Getting those fixed make the difference in our sport between you going to conference or going to nationals even, and it’s just so small.”
Health is the most important factor for the competitors as the season winds down. At this point in the season when athletes are nearing breakthrough performances Kaiser-Brown notes the need for injury prevention as the student-athletes’ bodies near their competitive limit. For now, the team is focusing on staying healthy while fine-tuning and maintaining the skills needed to be successful at the MVC Championship.
“We need to be very smart and not do something fancy or cute because we think it’s going be helpful,” Kaiser-Brown said. “Everything that they have is already there, it’s just a matter of them trusting it and being confident enough to take that into the conference meet.”