Track and field looking forward to successful season

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The University of Indianapolis’ track and field team is preparing for the 2022-2023 season. The indoor season is set to begin in December and will be followed by outdoor events, according to UIndy Athletics. Assistant Head Coach of Men’s and Women’s Track and Field Brad Robinson said that maintaining an athlete’s strengths has been an important part of preparation.

“We just have to make sure we’re keeping athletes healthy. The ones we [already] have… [and] the new athletes as well,” Robinson said. “So that they can maximize their capabilities to help the team this year.”

According to Robinson, the goals for the season include building off the momentum from the cross country season, helping athletes qualify for conference and potentially helping athletes qualify for nationals.

University of Indianapolis thrower Zoe Pentecost hurls the shot put in the UIndy dome. Pentecost competed in UIndy’s season opener for last year, taking place on Dec. 4, 2021.
Photo contributed by UIndy Athletics/Jacob Walton

“We had athletes graduate, but without a doubt, the athletes we have are looking for everybody to consistently improve by putting ourselves in positions to be competitive, to win races, particularly at conference…,” Robinson said. “It’s never guaranteed based on what else goes on in conference or [the] other teams, but as long as we’re challenging ourselves to improve and being contingent to win, we’re in a good spot.”

UIndy senior and distance runner Andrew Bixler said he feels as though the preparation for the upcoming season will result in athlete’s being better prepared for important meets such as conference and nationals.

“A lot of people will be training for conference and I know they can get to nationals,” Bixler said. “I feel like the majority [of athletes] will be training to get into that conference position.” 

While the team has had a few athletes graduate, the team’s seniors are looking forward to helping newer athletes reach their full potential. UIndy senior and thrower Zoe Pentecost said she looks forward to the UIndy women’s track team and hopes to win conference this season.

“The goals for the team… I hope we can score more points at [the] conference this year,” Pentecost said. “I think we’ll have a couple surprises, but I hope the women can finally win the conference championship this year.” 

Seniors on the track and field team have already taken up mentorship roles for the upcoming season.

Distance runner for the University of Indianapolis Andrew Bixler rounds the curve of the indoor track in the UIndy dome. Bixler was raced in the UIndy Classic on Jan. 22, 2022.
Photo contributed by UIndy Athletics/Jacob Walton

“It’s really fun helping coach them [younger players] sometimes and watching them progress as they start to pick up the events,” Pentecost said.

Bixler said that one of his main goals this season is to see more athletes make conference compared to last year. According to Bixler, this would be an improvement compared to last year.

“I definitely want to get more people out there in the conference position. I feel like last year we were [spread] thinner…” Bixler said. “I want to get some more people out there competing for conference…, and start having more guys work the times down a little bit more. I feel like each year we just keep being faster and faster.”

Robinson said he is confident in the team’s abilities for the upcoming season and the potential in the team’s new set of athletes.

“We feel like we’re in a pretty good spot to still be deeper than last year and hopefully perform at a higher level consistently,” Robinson said. “We want to be in contention to be at least top two in the conference, indoor or on both sides. Then as we transition into the post season championships for indoor and outdoor, we’re looking to send multiple athletes on both sides, men and women to nationals as well.”

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