ISU Heads to Grand Valley State for the GVSU Big Meet

Feb. 7, 2013

Header Graphic Release

NORMAL, Ill. - The Illinois State men’s and No. 26-ranked women’s track & field teams head to Grand Valley State for the GVSU Big Meet. The meet kicks off Friday, Feb. 8, and runs through Saturday, Feb. 9, in Allendale, Mich., at the Kelly Family Sports Center. 2,465 competitors from all levels of collegiate athletics and different clubs from around the country will compete.

Two nationally-ranked NCAA Division I teams will compete in the meet. MVC foe Indiana State is ranked No. 18 on the women’s side, while Big Ten school Michigan State is also ranked on the women’s side, standing at No. 24. A handful of NCAA Division II teams are nationally ranked and will compete: Academy of Art (Calif.), Adams State (Colo.), Ashland (Ohio), Ferris State (Mich.), Grand Valley State, Saginaw Valley State (Mich.) and Tiffin (Ohio).

The women’s distance crew is coming off another solid weekend of performances, as the distance medley relay team of Kristen Zillmer, Sade Sealy, Kim Christensen and Kelly McShea broke the Illinois State record in the event by nine seconds, finishing with a fourth-place time of 11:36.25 at the Meyo Invitational (Feb. 2). Rachael Brewer also had a strong performance in the 5,000-meter run, turning in a fifth-place time of 16:41.14, a personal-best by over 33 seconds. Brewer and Christensen will compete in the 3,000-meter run, McShea will toe the line in the 5,000-meter run, while Zillmer will take on the field in the 800-meter run invite.

The women’s sprint crew will finally be at full strength, as Sealy, Shandel Ellis and Printassia Johnson will take on the invitational sprinting events. The crew will also try and re-break the school record in the 4X400-meter relay as they did a year ago, with Zillmer running the fourth leg of that relay.

Brittany Smith will work to get it done in the field, as she is slated to take part in both the women’s weight throw and shot put invites. Kendall Rush and Emily Swift will also look to perform well in the field, as they are scheduled to compete in the long jump and pole vault invites, respectively.

On the men’s side, Coty Kramer is coming off a personal-best performance in the 400-meter dash, as he ran a Valley-leading time of 48.64. Tyler Rippel will compete in the 800-meter invite, as he won the 500-meter dash and posted a personal-best performance in the 800-meter run at the Meyo Invitational (Feb. 2).

In the distance events, Ryan Rutherford, Sean Senf and Tyler Morse will look to continue their string of quality racing, as they will compete in the 3,000-meter run. Rutherford (14:48.67) and Senf (14:48.83) are coming off career-times in the 5,000-meter run, Morse had a personal-best in the mile (4:14.67).

Fans wishing to follow the live action can do so on or on Twitter via @ISU_Track_XC. Your online source for Illinois State Athletics, tickets, TRC gifts, multimedia, Redbird merchandise, photos and more.