BENDIGO Harriers face a huge task to avoid relegation from division two after the 10th round of Athletics Victoria’s Shield League action.

The Harriers invoked the PowerPlay in which it doubled its points tally for last Saturday’s track and field meet run by Flack Advisory Bendigo Region.

There were some outstanding feats, but the Harriers are eighth of 10 teams.

Nunawading leads division two on 92 points from Doncaster 88, Mornington 84, and Eaglehawk 82.

Bendigo Harriers are under the pump from Mentone, 30, and Frankston, 25, who are yet to use their PowerPlay.

Highs of Bendigo’s twilight meet at Latrobe University Bendigo athletics complex in Flora Hill were record-breaking runs by Harriers’ star Jill Wilkie in the 800m and 3000m. Wilkie’s time of 2:41.61 to win the fifth of the 800m heats broke the Centre’s best time for the 50-plus class.
Later in the night she ran 11:29.33 to hold the 50-plus record for the 3000m.

First of the track events was the 400m hurdles. Eaglehawk’s Angus McKindlay put in a brilliant performance to win in 1:00.44 and earn qualification in the under-18 age group for this year’s national track and field titles in Sydney.
Just minutes after his 400m hurdles victory and McKindlay ran a season-best of 23.71 in the 200m dash.

A week earlier and Hawks’ clubmate Jorja Peace won her 100m hurdles heat in 16.18 to also qualify for the nationals.

Another of Eaglehawk’s best, Kye Mason was in hot form a week out from the Victoria Country titles to be run at Geelong’s Landy Field on the Australia Day holiday weekend of January 25-27.

Mason ran season-best times as he won the 200m in 22.63 and the 100m in 11.14.

Mason led the charge to victory ahead of Eaglehawk clubmates James Bentley, 23.53; Angus McKindlay, 23.71; Kenan Seebah, 24.22; Alec Colturi, 24.71; Lachlan Start, 24.74; and South Bendigo’s James Woods, 24.79.

It was a season-best time for Mason, Bentley, McKindlay, Colturi and Start.

In a closely-fought 100m, Mason reigned supreme in 11.14 from Bendigo Harriers’ James Miller, 11.45; McKindlay, 11.76; and Woods, 11.80.

Eaglehawk’s Andrea Archibald took out the first of the women’s 100m heats in a season-best 13.24 from Bendigo Harriers’ Gretel Holmes, 13.25; and Jorja Peace, 13.35. Fastest in the 200m were Holmes, 26.75, and University’s Jorja Van Den Berg, 27.82.

Eureka’s Luke Padgham showed he will be an athlete to watch at the country titles as he won the first of Saturday’s 800m heats at LUBAC in 1:58.78.

Stars at field events were Harriers’ Logan Sandland, 55.41m at hammer; South Bendigo’s Kellie Doering, 24.74m at discus; James Woods, 1.90m at high jump; Lachlan Start and South Bendigo’s Abbey Hromenko, 12.99m and 10.02m at triple jump.

In the race for Shield glory, South Bendigo is fifth in premier division.

Essendon leads the charge on 102 points from Glenhuntly 82, Diamond Valley 80, Western Athletics 63 and 311,398; South Bendigo 63 and 296,456.

In division four, Bendigo University is eighth and in the promotion/relegation play-off zone. Uni. Pride has scored 44 points in a competition where Wyndham 102, and Ballarat YCW 100, are the pacesetters.

The 11th round of AVSL at Bendigo will be run on Saturday, February 1 at 1.30pm.

Written by Nathan Dole