WAYNE – As the Wayne State College women’s and men’s indoor track & field teams plan on opening their season in mid-January, the Preseason NSIC Indoor Track & Field Coaches’ Poll was released earlier this week.
According to release from the league office in Burnsville, Minnesota, the Wildcat women were picked 11th with 74 points while the men earned 44 points and have been selected ninth in the preseason rankings.
Juniors Jordyn Pester and Mckenzie Scheil were listed as Wildcats to Watch in the NSIC this season. Senior thrower Cade Kalkowski and junior Noah Lilly are listed as Wildcats to Watch in the NSIC this season for the men.
The Wayne State College women’s indoor track & field team finished 10th last season at the NSIC Indoor Track and Field Championships and returns two All-NSIC performers.
Three-time defending champion University of Mary was voted the team to beat this season in the NSIC receiving 191 points and 10 first-place votes. Minnesota State-Mankato and Augustana tied for second with 179 points with Winona State (152) and Minnesota Duluth (133) rounding out the top five teams.
Concordia-St. Paul came in sixth at 129 points followed by Sioux Falls (104), St. Cloud State (102), Northern State (99) and Bemidji State (78) in the top 10.
Wayne State was 11th with 71 points with Southwest Minnesota State (47), MSU Moorhead (46), Upper Iowa (33) and Minot State (32) closing out this year’s coaches’ poll.
Junior thrower Mckenzie Scheil is the top Wildcat returner after winning the weight throw (63’) last season and placing third in the shot put (46’ 11 ½”) at last year’s NSIC Indoor Championships. The Fairmont native (Fillmore Central HS) is a two-time NCAA indoor national qualifier in the weight throw for the Wildcats.
Junior sprinter Jordyn Pester (Charter Oak, Iowa) is listed as Wayne State’s Track Athlete to Watch this season. She is the top returning sprinter for the Wildcats and placed fourth in the 400-meter dash as a freshman at the 2019 NSIC Indoor Championships.
Minnesota State-Mankato, the nine-time defending NSIC indoor champions, were voted as the team to beat again this season collecting 120 points and 10 of 12 first-place votes. Augustana was second with 112 points and the remaining two first-place votes. University of Mary (89 pts), MSU Moorhead (88) and Northern State (76) filled out the top five teams.
Minnesota Duluth was sixth (72) followed by Sioux Falls (64) and Concordia-St. Paul (61) with Wayne State ninth at 44 points. Southwest Minnesota State (28), Minot State (26) and Upper Iowa (12) round out the NSIC men’s coaches’ poll.
Cade Kalkowski, a senior thrower from Niobrara (Niobrara HS), was listed as Wayne State’s Field Athlete to Watch in the NSIC this season. Last year, Cade earned All-NSIC honors with a second place finish in the weight throw (67’ 3 ¼”) and was the NSIC champion in the event in 2019. Kalkowski is a two-time NCAA national qualifier in the weight throw and earned All-American honors in the event in 2019 placing seventh nationally.
Wayne State’s Track Athlete to Watch this season is Noah Lilly, a junior from Creighton (Creighton HS). Last season, Lilly posted an eighth-place finish in the NSIC heptathlon.
The Wayne State College indoor track & field team is scheduled to open the 2021 indoor season on Saturday, January 16 hosting the WSC Indoor Classic in the WSC Recreation Center.