Category Archives: Track and Field

FCA forming on campus

FCA is a great way for athletes to connect and grow in their faith (photo by Andy Haagenson).

FCA is a great way for athletes to connect and grow in their faith (photo by Andy Haagenson).

 by Allison Morehead

The University of Northwestern – St. Paul has officially created its own campus chapter of FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes). FCA is a nationwide organization that brings athletes together to worship and grow in their faith.

“I’m so excited for FCA to be coming to campus,” said freshman Kelsey Freitag.

FCA student leader Sara Kallhoff said, “It’s a time where student athletes can come together, talk and grow closer to the Lord through our connection of sports.”

Zach Filzen, the women’s basketball assistant coach, is working with FCA along with a student leader, Jake Knotek. Filzen and Knotek were the ones credited with the original idea of bringing FCA to UNW.

Knotek said, “He (Filzen) and I were just talking about FCA one day and realized the need and potential for it, so God put it on our hearts to go for it.  We realized that there really isn’t much unity among the Eagle athletes, and we often think we have enough spiritual fillers going on in our lives.  I know I could always use more.”

This will be the first FCA in Northwestern’s history. “I think in the past people haven’t felt a need for FCA since each sports team does their own devotionals within the team, and there are so many other ways to get involved,” explained Filzen.

Students will now have the opportunity to join a sports-related organization without the requirement of being involved in a Northwestern sport. FCA is open to anyone who is involved in a sport, or who has a love for sports.

Filzen stated, “Spread the word and come to the meeting with some friends.”

The first meeting will be held on Feb. 24 at 7:30 p.m. in the Ericksen Center.  There will be games, worship, small groups and a message.  Food will be provided.

For further information, students can follow the University of Northwestern – St. Paul FCA group on Twitter at @FCA_UNW or like its Facebook page.

Track teams train indoors

by Ryan Wienk

The University of Northwestern – Saint Paul men’s and women’s track and field teams kicked off the indoor track season with a meet Jan. 25 in River Falls, Wisconsin. The beginning of February brought two more opportunities for the teams with meets at University of Wisconsin – Stout and Bethel University.

“We are a team of 10 men competing against a team of 30 men; the odds are stacked pretty high against us. It doesn’t mean that we still don’t go out and compete hard and try to win our events and rack up points,” said head coach Steve Thiessen about the track and field team’s goals for competing in the conference.

The track and field teams have been preparing for the indoor season for almost a month now. However, Northwestern does not have a proper training facility for the track and field teams, which is why they have been traveling to different locations to practice two mornings every week.

This year the track team has a limited number of returning athletes. A majority of the athletes participating in track are from the freshman class. Coach Thiessen explained it saying, “We don’t have a strong core in terms of numbers, but what we do have are good people who are committed to running, training, helping us with leadership and giving us a good foundation to build on. It’s a great class of people that showed up. Some have great track experience, and some have minimal experience.”

All of the UNW athletic programs are focused on more than just athletics. They are fundamentally backed by the idea that even while participating in athletics, students should remain fully focused on Christ. The track and field teams take this mission to heart. 1 Timothy 4:7-8 serves as one of the team’s core verses to build the season around. Coach Thiessen explains, “I’m asking my athletes to think of the big picture by looking at all aspects of their life rather than just the sport itself. One area that we are focused on is the spiritual dimension of man what I call the total athlete; how we are growing in Christ whether it’s by ministry or personal devotions. Those kinds of things are important to us.”

The athletes are looking to reach their peak performance by the end of February. Until then, the teams will continue to train hard, have fun and glorify Christ. The next meet will be Feb. 15 at the University of Wisconsin – Superior.

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