Wright, Smith & Steiner Lead CC At SJU

Junior Cal Wright was one of three event winners for the Cobbers at the St. John's dual meet. He won the 300 meters with a time just off his own school record.
Junior Cal Wright was one of three event winners for the Cobbers at the St. John's dual meet. He won the 300 meters with a time just off his own school record.

COLLEGEVILLE, Minn. (2/28/21)---Cal Wright ran fast, Leo Smith finished with a flurry and Jacob Steiner threw far to lead Concordia in their dual meet at St. John's. Wright, Smith and Steiner were the three event winners for the Cobbers on Sunday as CC fell 102-47 to the Johnnies.

Wright claimed the win in the 300 meters in a field of 11 runners. He showed his best form of the season in cruising to a 35.68 which won the event by .64 of a second. Wright's finishing time is the second fastest in school history and narrowly trails his own school record of 35.41 which he set in 2019.

The win in the 300 comes a week after Wright posted a season-best time in the 400 meters at UND which is the fourth fastest in the MIAC this year.  

Smith earned his first event win of the year and may have posted a breakout performance for the rest of his collegiate career. The junior from West Fargo got into a dual with a runner with St. John's in the 3000 meters. Smith was able to pass the SJU athlete in the final 150 meters to cross the line first for the win. His time of 9:02.97 is a career best and pushes him into the Top 12 in the MIAC.

Head coach Garrick Larson described the 3K race: "Leo went out with the 3 other leaders. He worked his way to the front about 1k in, 3 Johnnies stalking behind. Then about 2k in a Johnnie passed Leo on the inside (along the rail/line). It didn't fluster him and he dropped back in right behind the leader. A lap later Leo retook the lead, seeming unfazed. Then, with 1.5 laps to go the Johnnie easily strides by Leo. It takes Leo another corner to get geared up to speed and get back on him. Then with 150 meters to go, Leo goes by with speed and doesn't look back."

Steiner won the shot put but it was his performance in the weight throw that was the highlight of the afternoon. He led a group of four Cobber throwers who all put up Top 16 program marks in the weight throw. Steiner finished second in the event with a distance of 54-01.25 which is a PR and the third farthest in program history. It also sits as the No.4 mark in the conference.

Steiner was followed by junior Jake Kerzman who put up the No.8 distance in Cobber history at 49-09.75. Freshman Cooper Folkestad and junior Zach Synstelien made it four in the Top 16. Folkestad came through with a distance of 48-00.00 which is No.11 on the list and Synstelien's throw of 45-11.25 is the 16th best in school history.

Steiner started his afternoon by winning the shot put with a mark of 50-02.50. The winning throw came on his final attempt and is 2.75 inches shy of his season best which came at NDSU on Feb. 5 and is No.3 in the MIAC this year.

The 54-01.25 in the weight throw and 50-02.50 in the shot put marks the second time this season he has gone over the 50-foot mark in both events.

The top track event for the Cobbers on Sunday came from the indoor mile. Jesse Middendorf and Munir Isahak finished third and fourth and led a group of six CC runners who placed in the Top 9 of the event which featured 17 competitors.

Middendorf was third with a time of 4:27.20 and Isahak clocked a 4:27.49. Middendorf's time is a career best and puts him in the No.7 spot in the conference.

UP NEXT: The Cobbers will compete against the Johnnies again next weekend when they participate in the St. John's Invitational on Saturday, Mar. 6 at 11 a.m.

COBBER NOTABLES:
Indoor Personal Records @ St. John's
200 - Dawson Schaffer, 24.09
800 - Hans Frank-Holzner, 2:06.02
Mile - Jesse Middendorf, 4:27.20
Mile - Cole Nowacki, 4:31.99
Mile - Michael Kraimer, 4:40.33
Mile - Ben Becker, 4:41.29
3k - Leo Smith, 9:02.97
SP - Jake Kerzman, 12.11 (39-8.75)
WT - Jake Steiner, 16.49 (54-1)
WT - Jake Kerzman, 15.18 (49-9.5)
WT - Cooper Folkestad, 14.63 (47-11.75)
WT - Zach Synstelien, 14.00 (45-11)

Cobber All-Time Top 25 @ St. John's, Sun, Feb 28, 2021
300 - Simon Zahrbock, 38.42, #16
300 - Michael Miller, 39.77, #24
Mile - Jesse Middendorf, 4:27.20, #15
Mile - Cole Nowacki, 4:31.99, #19
3k - Leo Smith, 9:02.97, #18
DMR - Jesse Middendorf, Cal Wright, Dan Wilson, Munir Isahak, 10:45.85, #9
WT - Jake Steiner, 16.49 (54-1), #3
WT - Jake Kerzman, 15.18 (49-9.5), #8
WT - Cooper Folkestad, 14.63 (47-11.75), #11
WT - Zach Synstelien, 14.00 (45-11), #16

RECAP SPONSOR: Today's recap sponsor is Fargo Linoleum. Fargo Linoleum has been a long-time sponsor of Cobber athletics. Like Cal Wright, Leo Smith and Jake Steiner, they are always putting forth a winning effort when it comes to giving their customers the best flooring options of any store in town.