May 19, 2010- The Fontbonne University track and field team closed their 2010 season with one of their sophomores closing in on a national qualifying time.
At Friday night’s(May 14th) Last Chance Meet held at North Central College in suburban Chicago, Illinois, Fontbonne University sophomore Zack Kassman (Northwest High School, Ceder Hill, MO) used the combination of perfect weather conditions and fast competition to lower his personal record time in the 3000 meter steeple chase by 8 seconds. He crossing the finish line in a time of 9:33.55, just eight seconds off the national qualifying standard.
“It was the first time all year Zack has had good weather conditions to run in and he really took advantage of the opportunity,” Fontbonne Head Coach Dave Almany said. “His splits were consistent for the first time all year, and he ran the last 200 meters, which included two hurdles, in 33 seconds, which is really fast.”
Sophomore Mike Horn (Vianney High School, St. Louis, MO) finished his season with a 1500 (metric mile) time of 4:10.58. The time was a personal record for Horn.
“Mike has really come a long ways this Spring. He has dropped his mile time by over 15 seconds from last year,” Almany said. ”Mike is still a relatively inexperienced runner. He is focused on some high goals he wants to achieve over the next two years, and with his work ethic, I wouldn’t bet against him.”
Sophomore Todd Schulte (St. Francis Borgia High School, Washington, MO) finished his short Fontbonne career by running in the 5000 meters.
“Todd just didn’t hit it on Friday, and I know he was disappointed,” said Almany. “He did everything I asked him to do, it just was not our night.”
Schulte took a less traveled path to emerge in two short years as the best distance runner in the history of the school. Schulte entered Fontbonne in the Fall of 2003, withdrew after two years before re-entering in the Fall of 2008. A runner in high school, Schulte joined the Griffins Cross Country team and amazed himself by finishing third at the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference meet. At the ripe old age of 25, Schulte was named the conference’s Newcomer of the Year.
Schulte, who graduated the day after the North Central Meet, departs Fontbonne as the school record holder in the 8000 meter cross country race, indoor record holder in the 3000 and 5000 meters and outdoor record holder in the 3000 and 5000 meters.
“Todd is a great story. He turned out to be ten fold the runner I had hoped he would be when I talked to him about resurrecting his running career two years ago. He was not a great high school runner, but he willed himself into a runner today that most Division I coaches would love to have. He did it all while working 40 hours a week. He is everything Fontbonne says it wants in a graduate. He has left an indelible mark on our program,” Almany said.