Moye, 4X800 Relay Pace Keydets at Hokie Invitational
BLACKSBURG, Va. - Jenna Moye set her second school record of the young season, and the men's 4X800-meter relay team was victorious in their competition to lead the VMI track and field teams Friday at the Hokie Invitational, hosted by Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Va.
The 4X800 squad, comprised of Andrey Dmitriev, Dean Gonsalves, Jacob Lysher and Felix Kitur, clocked in at 7:38.73, .70 seconds ahead of second-place Duke. The time was just under a second away from the VMI school record, which is one of the oldest in the Keydet books, as it was set in 1979. The effort was also VMI's third IC4A qualification of the season, joining Ademola Titcombe (triple jump) and Dennis James' (high jump) efforts at December's Northeastern Invitational.
On this night, Dmitriev did not get off to an ideal start, clocking in at 1:57.16 for the opening leg, but Gonsalves ran a solid 1:54.37 over his 800-meters to move the Keydets up to third. Lysher, competing in just his second collegiate event, ran a 1:55.12 to better his personal best, but VMI still sat fourth coming to the anchor leg, Kitur.
The senior responded, rebounding from a disappointing season opener to run a 1:52.10, a full 1.75 seconds faster than any other collegiate athlete competing. This allowed the Keydets to make up the needed time and prevail with relative ease.
Earlier in the day, Moye placed sixth in the 3,000-meters, running a new VMI record time of 10:02.66. The effort marks the second straight meet during which Moye has set a new Keydet record, as she also entered the books with the fastest mile in Keydet history last month in Boston, Mass. In a notable fact from Friday's proceedings, the VMI sophomore finished ahead of two of her expected Big South rivals, Hailey Neal and Dacia Bushman of Liberty, who placed 15th and 16th respectively.
Also competing for the Keydets were Jason Thorpe and Marshall Dalessandro, who took part in the men's mile. The pair went 1-2 in their heat, clocking in at 4:33.82 (Thorpe) and 4:35.80 (Dalessandro), respectively. Those times were good enough for 22nd and 23rd overall, while Ermin Mujezinovic was 28th in the 3K (8:48.09).
VMI track and field will return to action January 28 and 29, competing at the Liberty Open in Lynchburg, Va.
Ponton Breaks Record, Young Wins Event at Hokie Invitational
BLACKSBURG, Va. - On the first day of the first meet of the season, a school record fell at the feet of freshman Edward Ponton, while junior Javon Young narrowly missed a second CSU record at the 2011 Hokie Invitational, hosted by Virginia Tech.
The first track event of the season for CSU was the 3,000m run, and featured the first collegiate race for freshman Michael Bailey, who fared well, as the Virginia native finished 20th overall in 8:39.34.
The second event of the day was another positive performance for a Buccaneer freshman as Ponton set the school record with a 12th-place time of 8.17 second in the 60m hurdles. Fellow freshman Jermal McClendon ran 8.54 to finish 27th overall.
In the 60m dash, Young led the way in the prelims with a 6.79-second time, the sixth fastest overall, earning him a spot in the finals. Freshman Rozzie Johnson was second on the team, 14th overall with a time of 6.91 seconds, while Anthony Ward finished third in 6.92 seconds. Young took full advantage of his opportunity to run again, crossing the finish line in 6.65 seconds, 0.01 seconds off the school record and 0.05 off the NCAA qualifying time, winning the event by 0.05 seconds over Tennessee's Dentarius Locke.
The lone CSU representative in the mile, Scott Morrison ran 4:41.87 to finish 25th overall.
The lone mark in a field event came in the long jump, where after getting a mark of 13.55m (44-5.5) on his first jump, Lavon Allen fouled on each of his second two attempts to finish in 17th overall in the long jump competition.
Chelanga Opens Season with 4:03 Mile at VT
BLACKSBURG, Va. - Ten-time All-American Sam Chelanga opened his senior indoor track & field season in fine fashion, Friday evening at the Hokie Invitational. His winning time of 4:03.84 in the men's mile set a new personal best and highlighted Liberty's successful day inside Rector Field House.
Men's Meet Recap
Almost exactly two months after winning his second consecutive NCAA Division I national cross country title, Chelanga made his best attempt at a sub-4:00 mile to date. Towed along by freshman teammate Jarred Cornfield, Chelanga went through 800 meters in 1:59.5.
However, Chelanga's pace slowed to 63.8 seconds for the next 400 meters, after Cornfield stepped aside. With Virginia senior All-American Emil Heineking starting to close the gap, Chelanga clocked 58.9 seconds for his final two laps to seal the victory, reaching the finish line in 4:03.84.
Chelanga's time, a considerable improvement upon his previous best of 4:07.15, currently ranks No. 2 nationally. His IC4A-qualifying mark put him two seconds ahead of Heineking and four and a half seconds in front of Liberty assistant coach Derek Scott, who placed third in 4:08.28.
Chelanga was one of four Flames to qualify for the IC4A meet on Friday. Two of the other qualifiers came in the triple jump, where Liberty put three athletes in the top 12. Leading the way was Anthony Bryant, who placed fourth with an indoor personal-best leap of 49-11 in his season debut.
Clarence Powell, who had qualified for the IC4A Championship earlier in the season, came in eighth with a first-attempt 48-6.25 jump. Finally, Chris Johnson jumped a foot longer than he ever had before indoors, stretching the tape just past the IC4A line to 46-11.5. He placed 12th in the meet and moves up to No. 9 on Liberty's all-time indoor triple jump list.
Liberty's other IC4A qualification came in the men's 60-meter dash prelims, thanks to Jacey Bailey's 6.96 effort.
The number three was a common component of the Flames' other three noteworthy day one performances. Redshirt sophomore Ryan Smith placed third in the weight throw by extending his personal best to 58-1.75. Andre Washington became the third-fastest 300-meter runner in program history with his 34.79 clocking. It was the fastest 300 by a Liberty runner since 1988. In the night's final event, decathlete Geren Woodbridge tied for third in the pole vault at a season-best height of 14-9.
Women's Meet Recap
As was the case on the men's side, the reigning Big South individual cross country champion provided the performance of the day for the Lady Flames. Junior Jennifer Klugh placed third in the women's 3K and qualified for the ECAC Division I Indoor Championships with her personal-best time of 9:53.24. The time cut 14 seconds off of her previous indoor 3K best and ranks No. 3 in program history.
Klugh kept a steady pace of approximately 40 seconds per lap until the final two revolutions of Rector Field House's banked 200-meter oval. The Buckeye State native then stepped on the accelerator, closing the race with laps of 37.6 and 35.9 seconds.
Sophomore Meghan Burggraf ran a strong race in the rarely contested 600, claiming fifth place with a 1:34.53.
Other top placers for the Lady Flames included Shelley Parker and Mia Aghaji. Parker came in sixth in her section of the pole vault, with a top clearance of 11-1.75. Meanwhile, Aghaji was 12th in the triple jump, at 37-8.
Hokie Invitational action will resume Saturday at 10 a.m., with the women's high jump. Running events will get underway one hour later, when the gun goes off for the women's 5K.
Highlanders Conclude Day 1 of Hokie Invitational
BLACKSBURG, Va. - Junior transfer Curtis Hodge (Oak Park, Calif. / Moorpark College) recorded a Top-10 finish in the weight throw to highlight Radford track and field action Friday night in the Hokie Invitational.
Hodge, who recently joined the Radford track and field program this semester, began his Highlander career in grand fashion by taking home a ninth-place finish with a toss of 53-5/16.28m.
Senior Bryan Wallace (Millers Tavern, Va. / Essex) notched the third best mark in Radford history when he raced to an 8.32 finish in the 60-meter hurdles and was just .04 seconds off his own school record.
In women's action, Courtni Pannell (Newport News, Va. / Bethel) wrapped up the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 9.03 to finish fourth in her heat.
Day two of the competition will begin tomorrow morning at 10 a.m., starting with the women's high jump, which will feature the school record holder Nikki Roseberry (Dublin, Va. / Pulaski).
Lady Bucs Complete Day One of Hokie Invitational
BLACKSBURG, Va. - The women's track and field team posted a finalist and multiple top-20 finishes, Friday, on day one of the Hokie Invitational inside Rector Field House.
In the field events, Tamisha Foster led a trio of Buccaneers in the triple jump, finishing 22nd with a mark of 10.97m (36-0) on her second attempt. Sequoya Casey fouled on her first two attempts, getting out 10.55m (34-7.5) on her final try to finish 25th overall. Deona Jones had the opposite problem, marking at 10.17m (33-4.5) on her first trip down the runway, but could not get a countable mark on either of her final two tries.
In the women's weight throw, Tenasia White made the finals in her first meet in the blue and gold. White's third throw, a mark of 15.66m (51-4.5) put her in ninth overall. She could not capitalize on her extra tosses, but still led the trio of Lady Bucs in the event. Daisy Whitaker also had her best throw on her third attempt, getting the weight out 13.96m (45-9.75) for 16th, just ahead of teammate Tia Habersham, who finished 17th with a mark of 13.95m (45-9.25), which she accomplished on her first throw.
Freshman Hannah Burkholder led off the 2011 season with an 11:51.95 time in the 3,000m run, finishing 25th overall in the event.
Patria Norman finished 22nd in the 60m hurdles, running 9.02 seconds.
In the 60m dash, Brittney Greer was the lone competitor for the Bucs, running 8.14 seconds to finish 48th overall.
Freshman Mary Elliott ran 1:44.14 to finish 14th overall, just in front of teammate Susanna McKee, who claimed 15th in 1:46.06. Riyadh Smith ran 1:53.07 to round out the CSU finishers in 17th place.
Adrienne Cuff ran 5:23.00 in the mile to finish 15th overall, fourth in her heat, while Heidi Dean ran 6:07.97 to finish 21st.