By Caleb Scott
ADA — Seven athletes from the Ohio Northern men's and women's track and field teams will represent Ohio Northern at the 2018 NCAA Div. III Outdoor National Championships hosted by the University of Wis.-La Crosse in LaCrosse, Wis. from May 24-26.
Senior Matt Molinaro (Sterling Heights, Mich./DeLaSalle) will represent the men's track and field team, while senior Emily Richards (Delaware/Hayes), juniors Maddy Reed (Piketon), Taylor Fisher (Wapakoneta), Avery Ewing (Kokomo, Ind./Eastern), and sophomores Maggie Krause (Chagrin Falls/Kenston) and Taylor Lavey (New Baltimore, Mich./Findlay) will represent the Ohio Northern women's track and field team.
Molinaro, the 2018 Indoor NCAA III National Champion in the 800-meter run, is the fifth athlete in school history to win and national title and will look to become just the third athlete in school history to win multiple titles for ONU.
The senior qualified for the championships in both the 800 and 1,500-meter runs.
Molinaro enters the meet with the fourth fastest time in the 800-meter run and is within a half second of nations leader. He will compete in the prelims of the race on Friday afternoon at 5 pm. Molinaro ranks 14th nationally in the 1,500-meter run entering the weekend and will compete in the prelims of the event on Thursday at 2:30 pm.
Richards, a 7-time National Champion and ONU's all-time National Title leader, will look to claim her eighth and ninth individual national titles and will also compete in the 4x400-meter relay.
The senior leads the country in the 800 and 1,500-meter runs entering the weekend. She owns a 5-second lead in the 800 and an 11-second lead in the 1,500-meter run. Richards, the most decorated athlete in school history, will look to wrap up her career by sweeping the 800 and 1,500 races for the third consecutive time and will look to claim two national titles in the same championship meet for the fourth consecutive time.
She will compete in the prelims of the 1,500-meter run on Thursday at 2:45 pm before competing in the prelims of the 800-meter run on Friday at 5:15 pm.
Richards will be joined by Ewing, Fisher and Lavey as the foursome competes in the 4x400-meter relay at the national championships for the second time in 2018.
The group advanced to the 2018 Indoor National Championships earlier this season and enters the meet as the 13-seed.
Reed, a 3-time All-American in the pole vault, is set to make her fifth consecutive appearance at the national meet.
The junior enters the meet ranked second nationally in the pole vault with vault of 13' 1.75".
She will be joined by Krause for the second consecutive championship as the duo competed at the 2018 Indoor National Championships.
Krause enters the meet ranked sixth nationally with a career-best vault of 12' 8.75".
The pair will compete in the pole vault on Thursday 12 pm to begin the weekend for ONU.