The men’s Track and Field team went back to back. After seizing the indoor Big East Championship earlier in the year, they now have the outdoor Big East Championship as well. DePaul entered day two of the tournament in a sizable deficit but they powered into the lead behind strong performances from many, including junior sprinter Sebastian Feyersinger. Feyersinger finished with the top time in both the 200m and 400m. He said they felt the pressure going into that day two.
“There was a lot of pressure on us going into day two of the outdoor because we were supposed to be losing by like 50 points, but we closed the gap by 25 on the first day. So, we managed to close the gap and we managed to come out on top,” said Feyersiger.
Senior sprinter Chaz Bottoms, who helped DePaul to second place finishes in both the 4x100m and 4x400m relay, added that the team had faith that many of their strongest events where yet to come going into the second day.
“We’re a day two team. A lot of our jumps, some of our throws and mainly all of our sprints are on day two so we knew we had a lot of points coming,” Bottoms said. “We were kind of in a similar position in indoor were we were down by a lot. We knew that we could do it, we just had to show up and be ready to go.”
Feyersinger was one of 12 male DePaul athletes to be named to the Outdoor Track and Field All-Big East Teams. He made four All Conference Teams due to his first-place finishes in sprints and second on the relays and was one of just three athletes to do so. This also led to him being named Co-Most Outstanding Track Athlete of the Meet. Feyersinger said he was glad to get it, but wants to make sure it is not a one time thing.
“That’s been my goal for all these years that I’ve been here. Last year I was really close to getting it for the indoors. I only lost by like, a few points to one kid. I’m just glad that I got it for this year and am looking to get it next year,” Feyersinger said.
Behind every great athlete though, there is a great coaching staff and this squad was no exception. Head coach Dave Dopek, along with assistants Brandon Murer, Derrick Peterson and Stephanie Townsend kept the team going strong the whole year and was named the Big East Coaching Staff of the Year. Bottoms said he has seen them really change the team over his four years at DePaul.
“They truly deserve it (…) Just from my freshman year we are a far different team. We are a far deeper team. We cover a lot more events. We have more hurdlers, jumpers, sprinters and throwers. And so they were able to not just be coaches but really almost general managers and build the team. Every year filling in holes,” Bottoms said “They knew what it would take to win a conference championship, they just knew it would take some time.”
While Bottoms has run his last sprint for DePaul and will be graduating, Feyersinger still has another year to build on his resume. He is ready to train even harder to stay on top.
“We’re going for (personal records) and maybe training harder than we’re used to,” said Feyersinger. “Me, myself I do side workouts, so every day for six out of seven days a week, I would wake up at 6:30 in the morning and run stairs (…) and on weekends I don’t have meets I usually run four to six miles. So, I need to do that to try and stay on top.”