It was all Green and Gold as the Yellow Jackets dominated the fields at the Dakota Athletic Conference Championships held in Dickinson, ND. From the gun, Allen Wood (Maple Valley, WA), Cody Bordewyk (Livermore, CO), and Trent Waage (Aberdeen, SD) led the way for the Yellow Jacket running the entire 8K race side by side. The three of them went on to cross the finish line together in a winning time of 24:58 for the 8,000 meter race. With just under a mile to go, Mike Nekuda (Hot Springs, SD) passed Chris Heezen of Dakota State to give Black Hills State the top four finishers. Tyrone White (Eagle Butte, SD) was the final scorer for the Yellow Jackets when he finished in the 9th position giving Black Hills State the lowest Conference score ever for the Yellow Jackets with 19 points. Overall, the Yellow Jacket men had 8 All-Conference performers. Other All-Conference finishers in the top 15 included, Birch Haraden (Billing, MT) 11th, KC Fiedler (George, IA) 13th, and Jon Antar (Honolulu, HA) 15th.
In the women’s race it was a three-way battle for the individual title between Black Hills State’s Kerry Washburn (Cheyenne, WY) and Wendy O’Lexey (Rock Springs, WY) along with Dickinson States Rose Jepkirui. With less than one mile to go, Jepkirui looked like she was in control of the race as she established a ten meter lead on the field, but at the last uphill straight away, Washburn made one final move to give herself the conference title, winning the 5,000 meter race in a time of 18:13. The Lady Yellow Jackets compiled a list of All-Conference performers themselves as they had six of their top seven runners in the top 15. O’Lexey finished the race in 18:27 to give her a 3rd place finish, followed by teammates Alicia Verhulst (Ralph, SD) in 4th, Shelli Scheffler (Lovell, WY) 6th, Katie Cook (Cheyenne, WY) 11th, and Kayla Ferguson (Eaton, CO) 15th. The Lady Yellow Jackets took the DAC title with a team score of 25 points, followed by Dickinson State with 61 points, and Jamestown College with 87 points.
Next up, the Yellow Jackets will be competing a small group of runners at the Yellow Jacket Invitational in Billings, MT this Saturday, October 27th. The rest of the team will have a week off from competition before they run at the Regional Meet in Sioux Falls, SD on November 3rd.