Written by Student Assistant Garrett Hittner
TACOMA, Wash. – The Pacific Lutheran University men's and women's track & field teams head to Lacey, Washington this Saturday to compete at the Jay Hammer Invitational. The meet is hosted by Saint Martin's University, a new location to compete for many Lutes. After a meet plagued by high winds, rain, and cold temperatures at Linfield last week, both the men and women hope for clear skies this weekend. This meet marks the final competition for the Lutes before heading into the Northwest Conference Championships.
Carlie Kilcup, a sophomore thrower and pole vaulter for the Lutes women's team, has had the unique experience of doing two vastly different events in the same season.
"Competing in throws and vault is pretty weird because they are two completely different events, but similar in the way that both are extremely technical. I enjoy it though because I get to be a part of two groups within the team!"
One of the latest additions to the coaching staff this season is throws coach Trey Henderson. Focusing mainly on the javelin crew, he has been able to use his knowledge to pinpoint weaknesses in athletes and improve technique.
"Trey has brought a super fun and young energy to the javelin squad. With his knowledge from lifting to throwing, he brought in a new perspective to me and all the javelin throwers which has greatly impacted our throwing so far this season!"
When she isn't training for sports, Kilcup is most likely studying to maintain her grades. A nursing major, the sophomore is arguably pursuing one of the most time consuming majors offered at PLU. However, due to her self-discipline, she manages her time wisely.
"Managing time is definitely one of the hardest parts of being a student-athlete; but the way I do it is every single night I go to the library for up to three or four hours. I don't have too much time during the day, so after practice and dinner is my main time and I have to stay focused and get things done in the little time that I do have."
On the men's side, a name slowly gaining notoriety is that of Cody Barnett. A sprinter and jumper for the Lutes, the freshman dual sport athlete has matured to be one of the top competitors for the men's team. He brings with him a strong family name to PLU. To him, family is integrally tied to Pacific Lutheran.
"It means everything to me. I've grown up a Lute and that's all I've ever known. It's cool to be able to say that my parents have gone here and my brother goes here with me. I chose PLU for the football team and the great tradition. It's also close to home and has great academics."
Athletics can add an extra factor that can overwhelm incoming freshman. However, for Barnett, it seems natural to compete in athletics.
"It was easy because I competed in football and track in high school. It's been hard practicing spring football and track at the same time but I have very understanding coaches that make it doable."
In her free time, Kilcup enjoys playing intramurals in the offseason and reading. On the other hand, Barnett enjoys working out, spending time with friends and family, and watching the television show The Office.
The Lutes make a day trip out of the meet this weekend. Action begins in the field at 10 a.m. with running events starting at 10:30 a.m.