15 NCAA Div. III individual championships
PELLA—The Central College men’s track and field team is ranked No. 16 in the most recent U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Division III indoor national poll.
The Dutch slid five spots from last week’s No. 11 ranking after climbing as high as No. 9 Jan. 29. Central won Saturday's Grinnell Indoor Invitational, scoring 172 points in 17 events. Dubuque was second with 87 points, followed by Southwestern, Grinnell and Clarke.
Distance runner Eli Horton (junior, Runnells, Southeast Polk HS) ran a career-best 8:30.87 to win the 3,000-meter run, ranking No. 13 nationally. He was named Iowa Conference men’s indoor track performer of the week. Thrower Steven Messerschmidt (senior, Neola, Tri-Center HS) was tops in the shot put and the weight throw, recording a personal-best mark in the shot. Multi-eventer Eric Larson (junior, Waverly, Waverly-Shell Rock HS) won the long jump and placed in the top five in two other events.
The top three teams in the rankings remained unchanged, led by 2013 indoor national champion Wis.-La Crosse. Wis.-Eau Claire and Mount Union retained the Nos. 2 and 3 spots, while Wis.-Oshkosh and Haverford (Pa.) slid into the top five at Nos. 4 and 5, respectively. Wartburg remains the only other league school in the top 25, holding steady at No. 19.
Central competes at the Monmouth (Ill.) Invitational Saturday. The Dutch will also send six athletes to Massachusetts for the Tufts University Cupid Challenge and the Boston University Scarlet and White Invitational. Both meets are Saturday as well.