Two National Titles and Mount Union Men Place Third at NCAA Track & Field Championships

The 2017 Mount Union men's track and field team
The 2017 Mount Union men's track and field team

GENEVA, Ohio – Mount Union won a pair of national event titles, had two more All-American performances and the men's team placed third Saturday at the 2017 NCAA Division III Track & Field Championships at SPIRE Institute in Geneva, Ohio.

The Purple Raiders started the day winning the 4x100 meter women's title for the first time in school history. The quartet of senior Marisa Rinaldi (Tallmadge/Tallmadge), junior Katie Goedecke (Cuyahoga Falls/Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary) and freshmen Daijana Johnson (Alliance/Alliance) and Rachael Adams (Louisville/St. Thomas Aquinas) ran a school record time of 46.45

Mount Union then finished the day winning the men's 4x400 meter title for the fourth time in school history (1974, 2014, 2015) in dramatic fashion as freshman AJ Digby (Tontogany/Otsego) made up three places in the final 400 meters to get the win. Junior Tyler Neff (Navarre/Fairless) started the race and is a two-time national champ in the event as he ran a leg on the winning relay as a freshman in 2015. Freshman James Roth (Massillon/Massillon Perry) and sophomore Clark Etzler (Elida/Elida) ran the next two legs of the race to set up Digby.

In between those two events, a pair of hurdlers – freshman Mason Plant (Shreve/Triway) and sophomore Conner Troyer (Sugarcreek/Garaway) each got All-American honors.

Plant placed third in the 110 meter hurdles and set a school record with a time of 14.29 while Troyer was sixth in the 400 meter hurdles ran a season-best time of 52.70.

The other Raider competing on Saturday was freshman Matt Keim (Bolivar/Tusky Valley) who placed 16th in the pole vault.

The men's team tallied 29 points to place third and earn its 13th top-10 finish in school history.

Wisconsin-LaCrosse scored 47 points to sweep both of this year's indoor and outdoor men's team titles while Wisconsin-Whitewater came in second with 45 points.

The women's team finished in 30th place with 10 points as Washington University in St. Louis won the women's title with 56 points.

Wisconsin-LaCrosse hosts the 2018 NCAA Outdoor Championships before returning to SPIRE in 2019 hosted again by Mount Union and the Greater Cleveland Sports Commission.