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Bemidji State track and field: Buerkle breaks own records at Nelson Classic

MANKATO - Bemidji State junior sprinter Kristi Buerkle broke her own 200 and 400-meter dash school records Saturday at the Ted Nelson Classic at Meyers Fieldhouse.

Buerkle, a 2009 All-America sprinter, took first prize in both events showing she will again be a formidable opponent at the conference championships, out legging several of the league's top sprinters.

In the 200, she clocked a time of 25.44, to erase .19 of a second from her previous school mark (25.63) and down her closest Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference opponent by nearly a second. She also finished first in the 400-meters, shaving nearly eight-tenths of a second off her previous season-best set just a week ago (57.25) at the Cobber Duals. She separated herself from the rest of the field clocking a time of 56.42. She finished nearly six seconds ahead of her closest competition.

The junior seems to be hitting her stride at the right time. With three weeks before the conference indoor championships, she has already bettered her season-best of a year ago, 57.07, a time that earned her All-America honors and seventh place at the 2009 NCAA Division II Indoor Track and Field Championships.

Also participating in the meet were a trio of multi event athletes attempting to hone their skills in preparation for the NSIC Multi Championships next weekend.

Pearl Walker participated in three events. She tied for fourth in the high jump, took eighth place in the 60 hurdles and fourth in the shot put.

Senior All-America pentathlete Zac Preble, who entered the meet ranked second in the heptathlon, posted a season-best vault of 14-11.50 to edge teammate Raphael Gelo for third place. Gelo took fourth with a height of 14-05.50.