This weekend marked the end of the collegiate Track and Field season as four Carls—Matt Wilkinson ’21, Amanda Mosborg ’21, Lucas Mueller ’21, and Clara Mayfield ’23—competed in Greensboro, North Carolina for the D3 National Championships.
Mosborg competed in the 5k on Saturday, May 29 alongside teammate Clara Mayfield. Mosborg, a senior, was competing in her first outdoors national championships and did not disappoint. She showed her veteran strength in the grinding middle section of the race, running a 5:34 second mile before closing in a 5:38 final mile. She finished in 17:20, good for thirteenth place in her final competition in a Knight’s singlet.
Mayfield proved her incredible resilience this weekend if nothing else. She started off the weekend with the 10k on Thursday. She ran a gutsy race, putting herself in seventh with less than a mile to go when disaster struck. Mayfield experienced a combination of debilitating cramps and heat stroke brought on by the heavy North Carolina heat (almost 90 degrees at racetime) that left her unable to finish the race. After such a physically draining and heartbreaking experience in her first national championship race, no one would have guessed Mayfield would come back with such vigor in the 5k only two days later. She finished fourteenth on Saturday with a time of 17:22, only two seconds and one place behind her teammate Amanda Mosborg, and closed with a blistering 1:17 final lap.
Wilkinson was quite simply the star of the whole weekend. He took home the national title in both the 3k Steeplechase and the 5k. In the Steeplechase on Friday, Wilkinson dominated, running 8:47 to win by more than 20 seconds due to the scorching heat (more than 85 degrees at racetime). Doubling back in the 5k on Saturday he declined to chase the record, yet he still was mere seconds away from the 8:43 meet record mark. The decision to save for the 5k proved wise, as Wilkinson took what was supposed to be a tight race and blew the field out of the water. He stuck in the back of the pack for the first mile before making a strong move and simply running away with the race, soloing the last 2 miles before bringing it home in a blistering 60-second-flat last lap to finish in 13:55.27—just .27 seconds off the meet record of 13:55.00, but securing his second national title of the weekend.
Mueller kicked off the weekend with a downright gutsy performance in the 10k on Friday. He took the reins early with a move to take the lead before the mile mark in the six plus mile race. Mueller then slowly brought the field into the twilight zone with the help of the Greensboro heat. As the race progressed all but three competitors dropped off. Mueller was able to break Matthew Sayre of SUNY Geneseo, but the favorite Jared Pangallozzi proved too fit, closing in a 4:35 (Mueller himself closed in a 4:44). Mueller finished runner-up, dramatically outperforming his seed time and completing a ridiculous comeback, as it was unclear if Mueller would ever qualify for the national meet at the beginning of the season. Yet he wasn’t done. On Saturday he came back in the 5k to prove he had both guts and brains. He ran a brilliant but out-of-character race, sitting on the chase pack instead of his signature frontrunning. Mueller was near last place for much of the race before pouncing in the final lap, closing in a 4:36 last mile to secure eighth place with a time of 14:26 and the final All-American spot—finishing the weekend with two All-American awards and as national runner up in the 10k.