Tyler Emmorey (class of 2007) and Justin Balczak (class of 2011) have both qualified for the NCAA Division II National Indoor Track and Field Finals to be held at Minnesota State-Mankato on March 9-10. Emmorey, competing in his last year at Grand Valley State University, qualified in the men’s 5000m run with at time of 4:19.88. He is seeded tenth in the nation in DII. Tyler is no stranger to the NCAA Finals as he qualified during the cross-country season for the Lakers and has been a steeple chase qualifier in his previous outdoor seasons during his five year collegiate career. This will be Tyler’s last competition as a collegiate athlete, as he has no eligibility remaining.
Balczak, competing for Lake Superior State University, is ranked third in the nation, and top freshman, in the decathlon event. Justin must compete in seven events against twelve other athletes over the two-day meet. They include the 60m dash, long jump, shot put, high jump, 60m hurdles, pole vault and the 1,000m run. Justin claims that the two days of events is much more demanding on the body and mind than he ever thought it would be. He credits his success to quality coaching at Lake State, including up to five-hour practices. This spring, he will periodically compete in the decathlon during the outdoor season.
During both of their high school careers, Emmorey was a state qualifier in the 3200m run and in cross-country, while Balczak was a state champion in the 110m high hurdles and holds school records in the high hurdles, 300m low hurdles, and the 800m relay.