ACAC Indoor Track Championships

MacEwan's Thomas Cross-Trush (center) and SAIT's Brent Stephen (right), have both held the ACAC men's 300m record over the past two seasons. Stephen just snatched it away from Cross-Trush last month (Robert Antoniuk photo)
MacEwan's Thomas Cross-Trush (center) and SAIT's Brent Stephen (right), have both held the ACAC men's 300m record over the past two seasons. Stephen just snatched it away from Cross-Trush last month (Robert Antoniuk photo)

by ACAC Sports Writer Curtis J. Phillips

Trojans Matthew Travaglini Part of Five New Indoor Track Records

Some new faces and new laces along with a few races, led to numerous records broken at the 2018 ACAC Running Room Indoor Track Championships which concluded Saturday at the Kinsmen Field House.

Hosted by the MacEwan University Griffins, a total of 11 records were broken be they ACAC Record or ACAC Meet.

SAIT Trojans' Matthew Travaglini would set four of those new records by himself and a fifth as a member of the 4 x 400 metre men's relay.

In the men's 1,000 metre he set a new ACAC meet and ACAC record at 2:31.27. The previous records were held by runner Kenton Sportak. As a member of the Trojans in 2014 he clocked an ACAC record 2:32.35 and in 2016 as a member of the Concordia University of Edmonton Thunder, an ACAC meet record of 2:37.43.

Trojans' Jacques Saayman (2:40.38) and Red Deer Kings' Devon Gurney (2:42.01) placed second-third respectively.

Travaglini's third record was a new meet standard in the 3,000 m with a 8:41.62 performance, bettering the 2015 time of Lethbridge Kodiaks Alex Harding at 8:58.15.

Trojans Alex Howells was second (9:08.76) and Griffins' Scott Kohlman (9:22.33).

A third gold medal and meet record would come to Travaglini by winning the 1,500.

With a run of 4:04.01 he smashes the meet standard of 4:12.31 set by Thunders' Kirk Sundt in 2016.

Silver would go to Saayman (4:14.02) and bronze to Griffins' Scott Kohlman (4:15.20).

"I think it's the championship atmosphere," Travaglini told MacEwan Griffins Sports Information Officer Jefferson Hagen, when asked about putting together his fastest 1,000 m time of the season. "You know there's more people here. They like seeing a good show and wanting to put on a good show with the sidebar of chasing good times. It's fun to do."

Trojans' continued their dominance on the indoor surface as Ricki Christopher won women's gold in the 1,000, 1,500 and 3,000 with times of 3:05.40, 4:58.95 and 10:36.97.

"I PB'd in the 3,000 today. That was a personal best for me, so I'm feeling really good about that. It was a tougher race mentally than I think I've ever ran," said Christopher in a interview. "For my second one, it was definitely a mental battle. You know you're tired, but you can push. You think you know your limits but you can always push past them. It's good to see when it happens."

Kodiaks' Sophia Nowicki was second in the 1,500 (4:59.64) and 3,000 (10:39.08) with a third medal coming in the form of a bronze in the 1,000 (3:09.42)

Red Deer Queens veteran Jordanna Cota earned bronze in the 3,000 (10:44.73) whole Griffins' Hannah Leggatt was silver status in the 1,000 (3:06.97). Leggatt was 5:00.01 for a bronze in the 1,500.

Nikita Case established a new meet record in the women's 600 with a clocking of 1:37.35 to break the 1:38.30 mark established by Grande Prairie Regional College Wolves' Jamie Wigmore in 2015.

Teammate Valerie Schlottke 1:42.27 and Lethbridge College Kodiaks Kayla Enders 1:42.36 would place second-third.

Case would not break her own meet record 41:55 and ACAC record 41.46 that she set last season in the women's 300. This time around, still crossing the line first, she would clock an impressive 41.67. Teammates Schlottke 42.05 and Amanda Ntiamoah 42.32 would follow her second and third cross the finish line.

Nikita Case (center) leads teammates Valerie Schlottke (right) and Amanda Nitamoah (left) to the finish line in the women's 300-metre dash on Friday. It was a historic podium sweep - the first in ACAC indoor track history - for the Griffins (Robert Antoniuk photo).

It would be a historic moment for the Griffins with the first ACAC indoor sweep at the podium for an event.

"It means so much," said Schlottke in an interview. "We talked about this at the beginning of the season and the fact we're making history right away. All three of us on the podium is great.

"I knew Amanda coming out had a really strong start, same as Nikita, so I was just chasing them. That's what I was relying on the last little bit. Both of them ran really great races. I was really happy with our times."

Trojans Brent Stephen claimed gold in both the men's 600 (1:25.02) and 300 (35.61).

His 300 speed breaks the ACAC meet record of 36.52 established by Griffins; Thomas Cross-Trush last year, while the ACAC record of 35.64 was previously held by Stephen himself in 2017.

Cross-Trush would also break the previous record finishing second at 35.62. In third was Griffins' Reece Runco (36.56).

Rounding out the top three in the men's 600 it was Trojans Brant Lauweryssen (1:26.73) and Christopher Karg (1:26.93).

Griffins' Amanda Ntiamoah, Valerie Schlottke, Nikita Case and Hannah Leggatt won the exciting 4 x 400 women's relay with a new meet and ACAC Record time of 4:02.32.

Griffins had set the previous best times last year with a 4:08.18 meet and 4:03.25 best.

In the men's 4 x 400 both the meet and ACAC records were broken as the combination of Brent Stephen, Christopher Karg, Matthew Travaglini and Brant Lauweryssen sprinted to a 3:31.12 for the Trojans.

Schools participating were Concordia Thunder, MacEwan Griffins, Grande Prairie Wolves, Lethbridge Kodiaks, Red Deer Kings/Queens, SAIT Trojans, St. Mary's Lightning and Augustana Vikings.