Track teams look to continue excellence during the 2011 campaign

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After a successful season last year the men’s and women’s track teams under the direction of head Coach Tony Natali, look to continue their excellence and compete hard in another indoor and outdoor track season. During the 2010 campaign, the Lady Pilots captured both indoor and outdoor NCCAA championships, while the men placed third and second respectively. The women also won the MCC last year as well. After an off-season filled with focus and hard work, both teams hope that they can not only contend for another NCCAA championship but also send more athletes to NAIA nationals. On the men’s side, Coach Natali mentioned that the team has a specific list of goals in which they hope to accomplish during the upcoming season. Not only would he like to see everyone reach their maximum ability, but he would also like to see the men improve from each meet. After competing so closely in both the conference and indoor and outdoor NCCAA championships, Natali also hopes that the men can contend for more championships and use last season as fuel. The men are under great direction this season as there are several seniors on the team that have a strong drive and lead both vocally and through performance. “Leadership will have huge effect on this season. I put a lot on my seniors and have the utmost confidence they will be great leaders this season,” said Coach Natali. Natali also believes that the attitudes have been very positive so far this season. “The athletes’ attitudes have been awesome. They have worked very hard and are ready to compete,” said Natali. On the women’s side, they are coming off a nearly perfect season and hope that they can use that as motivation heading into the 2011 schedule. Nevertheless, Natali stressed that he wants to make sure their mentality is the same this year and make sure they work hard every practice and not take short cuts. Coach Natali also mentioned that the women’s team has a great amount of team chemistry which has led them to so much success. “Team chemistry is always huge. Our leaders will pave the way for what I believe what will be a special season. We do a ton of team building activities the whole first semester just to take care of this. This will be a strength of this year's team,” Natali said. The men’s and women’s teams both open up their seasons this Thursday as they travel to Grand Rapids University. Both teams will also be competing in NCCAA Indoor Nationals in early March and NCCAA Outdoor Nationals in early May. The MCC Conference will be held April 29, at Indiana Wesleyan University.
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