The Pilot spotlight is shining once again and this week it’s focused on senior runner Logan Orndorf who finished first in 3,000 meter race at the Husky Classic at the University of Washington. Not only did his stellar performance warrant a first-place finish, it also placed him in the Indoors record books at eighth all time.
“I didn’t let any big moves phase me and kept moving and then once we hit the last lap I heard our coach yelling to my right and I just was like might as well try to do it,” Orndorf said about beating the record. “Usually if it’s a good race, I’m just telling myself to relax and to breathe.”
Orndorf was originally placed in a lower heat for the 3,000 meter race, but was put into the toughest race after UP’s head coach, Rob Conner, convinced UW’s head coach to let him race in the top heat. The decision turned out to be the right one, as Orndorf finished with a time of 8.03.96, allowing Orndorf to beat his own personal record and place in the Dempsey Indoor records for the 3,000 meter.
“The first thought that I had was get up to him and level off and see how I was feeling based on running next to him.” Orndorf recounted starting behind Freshman Evert Silva, who impressively finished in 10th place. “It was kinda scary because he’s a freshman and he’s really talented, (and I) didn’t really know what he was capable of. Seeing as I’m a senior and he’s a freshman, there’s always that drive not to let a freshman beat you.”
It was a major victory for Orndorf, who said he was still trying to gage his fitness.
“I guess to me it’s a step in the right direction. Winning a big meet is nice but overall it doesn’t hold any real value. It’s a step in the right direction showing that I have the ability to compete with some top tier guys and it’s definitely a confidence booster.”
Orndorf’s finish at the Husky Classic showcased UP’s ability to compete in major events. However, his outstanding performance served more as a boost in confidence than a valuable victory for the season. Orndorf will look to continue this form as track season continues once again at the University of Washington this Friday and Saturday where teams will compete for the MPSF Championships.
“My personal goal is where do you go from second, preferably up, and if that’s the case than the goal is to win a National Championship,” Orndorf said about his hopes for Pilot Track’s near future. Only time will tell if Orndorf and the rest of Portland Track can fulfill this goal and bring some hardware home to the Bluff.