NAIA Outdoor Championships
Three Defender individuals and one relay earned All-American honors on the final day of the NAIA Outdoor Track and Field National Championships held today in Gulf Shores, Ala.
Payton Mauldin, Eric Steiger and Nic Veldhorst claimed the national honor in their respective race while the 4x800 relay team of Mauldin, Cole Zevenbergen, Trey Engen and Jeb Merkle also took home All-American accolades.
Once all 24 events were scored, Dordt finished in a three-way tie with Grace (Ind.) and Lewis-Clark State (Idaho) for 10th place in the team standings with 21 points.
Running in his fourth 800m at the championships, Mauldin finished eighth in today's final with a time of 1:54.2, just over three seconds in back of the champion, Senzo Sokhela (Westmont).
Steiger and Veldhorst were All-American in the 3000m steeplechase. In fifth place after the sixth lap, Steiger moved up three spots during his final two laps to finish as the runner-up. The senior nearly overtook the national champion, Shimales Abebe (Oklahoma City), in the final moments. Steiger finished with a school-record time of 9:04.61, less than a second in back of Abebe. Veldhorst improved his positioning during the final lap and placed sixth with a season-best time of 9:17.7. Peter Shippy, in 14th place after the fourth lap, moved up to 10th by races end (9:29.85).
Dordt's 4x800 relay placed fourth overall with a time of 7:34.27, five seconds behind champion Indiana Wesleyan. Mauldin made things interesting by moving from fifth place into first during his opening 400m in the relay's final carry but was unable to hold off the competition.
Joe Anderson narrowly missed out on a top-eight finish by placing ninth in the 1500m (3:55.08).
Bailey Vande Griend and Brooks DeWaard began the third and final day of the championship with an early morning start in the half-marathon. Vande Griend placed 19th and posted the third fastest time in program history (1:13.59). DeWaard was 24th and completed the course in 1:14.
Results (Listed format)
**bold denotes All-American
- Bailey Vande Griend - 19th: 1:13.59
- 3rd fastest in program history
- Brooks DeWaard - 24th: 1:14.42
- 6th fastest in program history
- 4th place: 7:34.27 (All-American)
- 5th best in program history
- Eric Steiger - 2nd: 9:04.61 (school record)
- Nic Veldhorst - 6th: 9:17.7 (season-best)
- #2 time in program history
- Peter Shippy - 10th: 9:29.85
- # 4time in program history
- Joe Anderson - 9th: 3:55.08
- Payton Mauldin - 8th: 1:54.2
This ends the season for the Defenders.