15 NCAA Div. III individual championships
DES MOINES — Adding another milestone performance to the Central College track and field program’s powerful tradition in the multi-events, former Dutch NCAA Division III champ Kurtis Brondyke captured the Drake Relays decathlon crown Thursday.
Brondyke, a 2011 Central grad, endured soggy conditions to top a field that included an assortment of top Division I competitors and other graduated collegians. He rolled up 7,283 points to hold off Nathanael Franks of Arkansas, who finished with 7,107. Brondyke’s career best at Central was 7,109. He’s the first Central athlete to win the Drake decathlon.
Wednesday Brondyke ran the 100 meters in 11.16 seconds, went 21 feet, 11.75 inches in the long jump, threw the shot put 43-3, cleared 6-0.5 in the high jump and ran the 400 meters in 51.83 seconds.
Thursday he had one of the top times in his specialty, the 110-meter hurdles (14.93 seconds), threw the discus 137-10, cleared 14-05.25 in the pole vault, threw the javelin 190-11, then closed with 4:46.78 in the 1,500-meter run.
Brondyke, a Clinton, Iowa native, was a three-time placewinner in the NCAA Division III decathlon while at Central, finishing fifth in 2009 and 2010, and second in 2011. He was the national champ in the indoor pentathlon in 2011 after placing sixth in 2009 and 12th in 2010. He also earned all-America distinction in the outdoor long jump as a freshman in 2008.
Brondyke was also an all-Iowa Conference punter for the Central football team, and competed in men’s basketball as a freshman.
Central has won men’s and women’s indoor and outdoor multi-event NCAA titles eight times since 2001, and received all-America distinction 41 times overall. Current Central junior Eric Larson (Waverly, Waverly-Shell Rock HS) is the defending Division III champ in both the indoor heptathlon and the outdoor decathlon, but is sidelined by injury and did not compete at Drake.