The Royals’ Track & Field team has had a strong start to the season with four school records being broken in one day. First-year Hannah Chappell-Dick broke the record for the 800m and one mile race while Senior Dan Nafziger claimed the 1000m and one mile race at the Liberty Open in Lynchburg.
Chappell-Dick has enjoyed college track and field being in season all year round due to the “great continuity with the team and coach.” This is quite different from high school, where there was no opportunity to be on an indoor track team.
Compared to her high school team, she respects this team’s work ethic. perform at full strength this season. Paden treasures the atmosphere of the
“The people on the team are more serious about the sport…and put in more work together,” explains Chappell-Dick.
Her goal for the season is for the team to beat their preseason poll ranking at ODACs. She’s looking forward to seeing Coach Lewkowicz turn EMU’s track program into something that “will be respected, feared, and recognized on a regional, or even national, level.”
Nafziger contributes his success this year to good health and a different training routine.
Nafziger transferred to EMU from George Mason University his sophomore year. He was hindered from per- forming at his full capacity last year due to an Achilles injury. With rehabilitation, he has been able to start to
“Coach Lewkowicz has me training more as a mid-distance runner instead of doing long distance workouts, which I believe suits me better and keeps me healthier.”
Nafziger is looking forward to lowering his mile time and working to place well at “whatever events” he ends up running at the ODAC championships. He says that the events he ends up competing in will depend on conversations with Lewkowicz and how the rest of the season goes.
Others who performed especially well in the meet include First-Year Jolee Paden and Junior Jordan King.
Paden snagged the school record for the mile mere minutes before Chappell-Dick claimed it in a later heat.
Paden treasures the atmosphere of the team saying that “running for EMU has been a team effort in glorifying God as opposed to…an individual effort.”
King placed second among DIII athletes in the high jump, a feat for his first season ever participating in track. King explained that “in high school, we did not have a track team because of our small student body.”
King originally came to EMU planning to play for the basket- ball team. When that did not work out, one of the coaches sent him an email asking if he would be interested in trying the high jump. “I saw it as an opportunity to continue to challenge myself athletically,” said King.
The team competes next this weekend at the JDL Fast Track Invite.