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Lacey opts for Duquesne

Butler sprinter could immediately impact Dukes’ track and field program

BUTLER TWP — Dealing with health issues this season, Butler senior Landon Lacey hopes to expand his track and field horizons in college.

Lacey recently signed a letter of intent to continue his academic and track career at Duquesne University. He plans to major in finance.

Standout Butler sprinter Landon Lacey, flanked by parents Krissy and Ryan Lacey, signs a letter of intent to continue his academic and track and field career at Duquesne University. Looking on are, left, Butler boys track coach Mike Seybert and sprint coach Fred Pinto. John Enrietto/Butler Eagle

Serving as a sprinter and running legs of the 4x100 and 4x400 relays for the Golden Tornado, Lacey hopes to become a decathlete at Duquesne. Pitt and Penn State were among the other schools he considered before choosing the Dukes.

“It’s a school that’s close to home and I feel like I can really help the track program there,” Lacey said of Duquesne. “I want to make an impact and doing the decathlon is a challenge I’d love to take on.

“I’ve already done some of the events involved (in the decathlon) and I feel like I’m suited to do the others. I’d also love to break their school record in the 400 meters.”

Lacey experienced some breathing issues while competing on the track for the Tornado this spring. He injured a hamstring late in the season as well.

“It might have been a strained muscle in his chest that was causing the breathing issue, but that got straightened out,” Butler boys track coach Mike Seybert said. “The point is that Landon has had to overcome obstacles like that in football and track in high school.

“He’s a versatile runner whose true potential has not been realized yet.”

Butler sprint coach Fred Pinto describes Lacey as “a kid with natural ability who works very hard. That’s a winning combination.”

Duquesne’s men’s track and field team finished 11th out of 13 teams at the Atlantic 10 Outdoor Championships this year. The team only had three seniors, one of them — Ian Thrush — being a sprinter. Thrush did not compete this year.

Jeff Gibson completed his third year as Duquesne head coach. His 2022-23 team saw six individual school records broken and 23 all-time top-five times and distances put up.

“They’re building the program there and I’m anxious to be part of that process,” Lacey said.

He added that he appreciates the tradition of the Butler track and field program.

“I’ve learned a lot from the upperclassmen who were here a couple of years ago,” Lacey said. “Lucas Slear, Brayden Young ... Those guys showed me how to prepare and for meets and I just followed the work that they put in.”

“Landon can do sprints, middle distance, he’s a versatile runner,” Seybert said of Lacey. “They can use him in a variety of ways. There is a high ceiling to his skill level.”

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