First Places Finishes Highlight Track & Field Action
Smith Sets Shot Put Record, Radford Claims Three Individual Titles at Liberty
LYNCHBURG, Va. - Justin Smith (Dayton, Va./Turner Ashby) set a new shot put school record and Radford had three individual titles to conclude the final day of track and field action at the Liberty Open on Saturday.
Smith's record throw, 16.25m / 53-03.75, came on his sixth and final attempt and was good for a runner-up showing, behind Liberty's Ryan Smith who hasn't lost an event this year.
Courtni Pannell (Newport News, Va./Bethel) won the 60m hurdles with a time of 7.76, her second fastest mark and third best among Radford hurdlers all-time.
Freshman Vincent Wyatt (Atlanta, Ga./William Fleming) posted an 8.16 finals time in the men's 60m hurdles to claim his first collegiate title. In addition, Wyatt's time also stood as the second fastest time in program history. Brett Olinger (Timberville, Va./Broadway) clocked an 8.45 and finished third in the event.
Shalonda Mitchell (Richmond, Va./Varina) also won her first collegiate event when she crossed the finish line in 2:22.65 in the women's 800m.
Curtis Hodge (Oak Park, Calif./Moorpark College) placed runner-up in the weight throw, also behind Smith of Liberty, with a personal-best mark of 17.56m / 57-07.50.
In the women's shot, Alyssa Isham (Prince George, Va./Prince George) placed third with a toss of 12.69m / 41-07.75.
Lakei Crews (Antavista, Va./Altavista Combined) tied for fifth in the 60-meter dash with a finals time of 7.78, the seventh fastest time in school history. Her finals time came after a 7.84 in the prelims and each were new personal-bests.
Joseph Betts (Lancaster, Va./Lancaster) crossed the line in fourth with a 6.97 in the men's 60m and turned around to claim third in the 200m with a time of 22.81. Tehquin Warrick (Hampton, Va./Phoebus) finished just behind Betts in sixth with a 22.88 and Kaise White (Houston, Texas/Freedom) also posted a top-10 finish with a 23.01.
In the women's 400m, Diane Wesh (Virginia Beach, Va./Landstown) took fifth overall, clocking a 1:00.58. On the men's side, Warrick ran a 51.29 and grabbed fourth.
Eric Graves (Yorktown, Va./Colorado State) posted his highest showing of the year in the 800m with a fifth-place performance (1:59.56), which was also a persona-best time.
Maggie Wissler's (Pittsburgh, Pa./Brentwood) 3:09.40 in the 1000m earned her a runner-up performance. Highlighting the men's 3000m was freshman Ryan Farnan (Winchester, Va./Millbrook), who took fourth place with an 8:56.42
Competing in the mile was Caroline Ratterree (Falcon, Colo./Northeastern JUCO), whose 5:26.94 PR earned her seventh-place. Brian Gorwitz (Yorktown, Va./Grafton) took fourth with his time of 4:24.60 on the men's side.
Nikki Roseberry (Dublin, Va./Pulaski) leaped 1.63m / 5-04.25 in the high jump to grab fourth place.
Kayla Christian (New Kent County, Va./New Kent County) spanned a personal-best 5.32m / 17-05.50 in the long jump to take home fifth place. Jamiecka Baker (Lynchburg, Va./Rustburg) had a nice showing in the triple jump with a mark of 11.15m / 36-07.00, good for fifth overall.
Phillip Hovatter (Mt. Jackson, Va./Stonewall Jackson) wrapped up the heptathlon in third place, totaling 4,321 points.
The Highlanders will take a weekend off and return to action on Feb. 10-11 when they take part in the Akron Invitational.
Johnson Takes First in 60-meter Dash at Niswonger Invite
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. - A first place finish in the 60-meter dash by sophomore Rozzie Johnson was just one of the highlights by for the Charleston Southern men's track & field team at the ETSU Niswonger Invitational, hosted by East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, Tenn., on Saturday.
Johnson won the 60-meter dash with a time of 6.76. Teammate Javon Young was disqualified from the event for a false start but took second place in the 200-meter dash with a time of 21.45. Johnson was fourth in the event, crossing the line in 21.67 while Braxton Drummond finished ninth in 22.21.
Drummond took second in the long jump, finishing with a distance of 7.35 meters. Young also finished in the top ten, taking ninth place. His jump was 6.93 meters.
Young was also a member of the 4 x 400 meter relay team, along with Stephen Slan, Dantwan Spreads and Corrie Roach, that took seventh with a time of 3:23.09 to win their heat.
Scott Morrison took fourth place in the 800-meter run, finishing in 2:00.23. Tyre Hines was 15th overall with a time of 2:06.36. The two combined with Avery Coe and Michael Marshburn for a fifth place finish in the distance medley, finishing in 11:04.57.
In the throws, Richard Landford took tenth place in the shot put with a distance of 14.15 meters (46-05.25). Cleveland German finished 14th with a throw of 13.31 meters (43-08.00).
Field Events Highlight Liberty Open Action
LYNCHBURG, Va. - Liberty was at its best during the field events on Saturday at the Liberty Open, inside the Tolsma Indoor Track Center. Mychelle Cumings shattered her own school record in the women's shot put, while both Mia Aghaji and Ryan Smith were double winners on the day.
Women's Meet Recap
The first time she ever competed at her home indoor facility, at the Liberty Kickoff, freshman Cumings had broken a long-standing school record in the women's shot put with a 45-1 heave. On Saturday, Cumings again displayed her affinity for the Tolsma Indoor Track Center, pushing her Liberty record all the way out to 47-5.25 with her third throw.
Cumings won the competition handily, with teammates Emily Woods (43-10) and Rachel Barnes (41-1.75) placing second and fourth, respectively.
Aghaji took top honors in both the high jump and triple jump, qualifying for the ECAC meet in both events. Her first-attempt high jump clearance at 5-7 gave her the victory over George Mason's Dominique Graham. It was the best high jump mark of Aghaji's collegiate career and moves her up to No. 3 on Liberty's all-time list. No Lady Flame had high jumped 5-7 indoors since 2007.
Aghaji also took home the Liberty Open women's triple jump championship for the third time in the last four years with an indoor personal-best leap of 40-2. She joined program record holder Jonisha Saunders as the only Lady Flames ever to triple jump 40 feet indoors.
Freshman Melissa Rohwer backed up Aghaji's performance with a fourth-place finish in the triple jump. Her top effort on the day measured 37-0.5.
The Lady Flames' fourth and final event victory on Saturday came in the 4 x 400 relay. The quartet of Kiara Bridges, Kylie McMichael, Melanie Sims and Meghan Burggraf crossed the line first, in a time of 4:00.66.
Sims had previously finished third in the 400-meter dash, clocking a 1:00.36. Meanwhile, Amanda Wimbush was third in the 800-meter run, at 2:24.37.
Freshman Abigail Flower had a successful day in the short sprints, placing second in the 200 and fifth in the 60. Her 200-meter dash time was 25.82, while her 60-meter clocking was a personal-best 7.76. Flower is now tied with teammate Olivia Charnuski for seventh place in program history at 60 meters.
Men's Meet Recap
Smith dominated the men's shot put and weight throw on Saturday, winning both events by wide margins and in season-best fashion. He started the day with a 59-8.5 mark in the weight throw, taking first place by more than two feet. Freshman teammate David Scouten came in fourth in the weight at 54-1.
Smith and Scouten were at it again in the shot put, finishing first and third. Smith's season-best toss of 58-4.75 gave him the victory by more than five feet and kept him undefeated on the year for the shot put. Scouten followed with a personal-best throw of 52-1.75, qualifying for the IC4A meet and joining Liberty's all-time top 10 for the event.
With three-time defending meet champion and teammate Kolby Shepherd sitting out Saturday's competition, Cody Fridgen pole vaulted a season-best 15-3 on his first attempt to claim victory. Jon Drablos followed in fifth place, after sailing over the bar at 14-9.
On the track, Liberty's strongest event was the 400-meter dash. Newcomer Leonard Robbins won the 400 in 50.20 seconds, with teammate Andre Washington taking runner-up honors at 50.81.
Robbins and Washington later ran the first two legs of the Flames' victorious 4 x 400 relay team, where they were joined by Tyler Weigandt and Paul Arslain. The grouping posted a time of 3:24.37 in the final men's event.
Liberty also performed well at two non-traditional distances, 500 and 1,000 meters. Arslain came in third in the 500 final with a 1:05.88 effort. Jordan Bright was the fourth-place finisher in the 1,000, posting a time of 2:40.53.
Harrison Allen and Tevan McIntire finished sixth and seventh, respectively, in the heptathlon. Allen's personal-best score of 4,464 points put him just nine points ahead of McIntire and made him the No. 10 heptathlete on Liberty's all-time list.
The lone facility record of the meet was set in the heptathlon, where Edward Broadbent posted a winning score of 5,690 points.
Liberty will compete in a rare team-scored meet next Saturday, heading to University Park, Pa. for the Sykes-Sabock Challenge Cup. The meet, which the Flames will be taking part in for the fifth consecutive season, will take place at Penn State's Horace Ashenfelter III Indoor Track. Action is slated to begin at 9 a.m.
Coastal Performs Well on Second Day of Clemson Invitational
CLEMSON, S.C. - The Coastal Carolina women's track and field team carried the momentum that they built on Friday, Jan. 27 into the second day of the Clemson Invitational on Saturday, Jan. 28 as the Chanticleers recorded 13 top 10 performances.
Posting one of the Chanticleers best performances of the second day of competition was Letitia Saayman, who won the 3,000 meter run in a time of 10:09.40. Emily Marchini took fourth after completing the event in 10:29.09 and Shelby Nicosia followed right behind posting a time of 10:29.24 to place fifth.
The Coastal 4x400 meter relay earned the other top performance as Erica Peake, Qwontajah Thompson, Santresa Jamison and Sharmaine Barnes won the event in 3:49.85, finishing just shy of the school record which is 3:49.10. Taking fourth in the event was Christina Davis, Caitlin Baker, Ruby Durham and Camille Hurley with a time of 4:04.17.
During the pole vault Mary Lawrence tied with two others for second place after clearing 3.78 meters (12-04.75), setting a new school record. Lawrence broke Marilyn Testa's mark of 3.65 meters (11-11.75), which was set in 2003.
Sophie Perry collected another second place showing in the meet, as she finished the mile in a time of 5:02.80, improving her time by almost five seconds since competing in the Virginia Tech Invitational. She also earned a second place finish in the 800 meters during Friday's competition. Perry finished as the top collegiate athlete in both of those events as the overall winner was a post collegiate athlete. Christian Johnson also had a top ten performance in the mile, taking fifth place following a time of 5:05.00.
Peake earned a second place finish in the 200 meter dash, completing the race in 24.68. Thompson finished in fifth, recording a time of 25.37. The Chanticleers posted back-to-back-to-back finishes in the event as Barnes was 10th (25.73), Gabrielle Leecame in 11th (25.78) and 12th was Jamison with a time of 25.98.
Shantelle Patterson led Coastal in the weight throw, as she came in fourth following a throw of 16.48 meters (54-01.00). Anjulia Nicholson placed fifth in the event after throwing the weight 15.05 meters (49-04.50). Posting an eighth place showing was Brittany Connor who recorded a toss of 14.28 meters (46-10.25).
Coastal will next compete in the Sykes and Sabock Challenge Cup in State College, Pa. on Saturday, February 4.
Camels Post Two Wins on Day Two at Liberty Open
LYNCHBURG, VA.-Christopher Shulist and Rachel Deline both posted individual wins while several other Camels picked up top-five finishes on the second and final day of the Liberty Open Saturday at the Tolsma Indoor Track Center.
Schulist, a sophomore from Holland, Mich., took the top spot in the men's mile with a time of 4:18.88, just two seconds short of the school record (Carl Ivarsson, 4:16.4, 1982). Eric Baldwin also placed seventh in the mile with his 4:28.17. Schulist, meanwhile, posted a time of 2:00.00 in the men's 800, finishing seventh.
Deline, a senior from Belleville, Ontario, topped the women's 3000 meters with her time of 10:18.57, while Ashley Matthews took fourth at 10:37.98.
Mariah Collins broke the Campbell women's 60 meter hurdles record for the second time already this season, tallying a 9.04 to qualify seventh in Saturday's preliminary round. The sophomore finished seventh with a 9.09 in the finals.
Lynette Akai also notched a runner-up showing in the women's 500 meter dash with a time of 1:22.09, while Sena Bekric finished sixth in the event with a time of 1:26.03. Rudi Fate collected a third place finish in the women's triple jump on an 11.30 meter leap.
Samantha Robbins placed seventh in the women's 2:27.68, while Brianna Kincade finished eighth in the women's 200 meters, posting a time of 26.48. Robbins also finished fourth in the mile with a 5:21.39.
Campbell's men's 4x400 meter relay unit placed third with a time of 3:29.64 (Kelvonto Cooper, Denzel Jones, Andres Perez, Jayshawn Campbell), while Tyler Long qualified fourth in the 60 meter dash with a time of 6.98 before being disqualified in the finals.
In the men's 500 meter dash, Jayshawn Campbell placed fourth with a time of 1:06.27, with Kelvonto Cooper taking eighth with a 1:09.42. DeLohnni Nicol-Samuel also finished fourth in the men's 3000 meters, posting a time of 8:51.35.
In the men's 200 meter dash, Cameron White and Stanley Hicks finished back to back in the sixth and seventh positions, notching times of 22.83 and 22.85. Devin Combs registered a 10th place finish in the men's shot put with a 13.31 meter mark.
Next up for the Camels will be the Kent Taylor Invite on Feb. 4 at North Carolina.
Veatch Claims Weight Throw Title on Day One of Liberty Open
LYNCHBURG, Va. - Senior Aimee Veatch (Roanoke, Va./Cave Spring) picked up her first weight throw title of the season to cap the first day of track and field action in the Liberty Open on Friday.
Veatch's throw, tops in the Big South this year, reached a distance of 18.17m / 59-07.50, while out-throwing the runner-up by more than four feet. In the same event, Sharee Fitzgerald (Chatham, Va./Chatham) placed sixth with a personal-best toss of 14.60m / 47-11.00.
Current heptathlon school-record holder Phillip Hovatter (Mt. Jackson, Va./Stonewall Jackson) and freshman Travis Hudson (Christiansburg, Va./Christiansbug) each had solid showings over the first four events in multi's. Hovatter took first in his section with 2,641 points, while Hudson racked up 2,612. Overall, Hovatter and Hudson sit in second and third place, respectively.
Hovatter highlighted his day by taking first in his section in the high jump with a height of 1.88m / 6-02.00, a personal-best leap.
Kaleice Green (Mechanicsville, Va./Atlee) represented the Radford women in the pentathlon and took first place in the shot put with a personal-best mark of 10.37m / 34-00.25. Over the five events, she recorded 2,210 points.
Navarro Wins Women's 5K on Day One at Liberty
LYNCHBURG, VA.-Cynthia Navarro notched a win in the women's 5000 meters, highlighting day one action for Campbell at the Liberty Open.
Navarro, a CU junior, topped the event with a time of 18:22.76, finishing 21 seconds ahead of King's Kendra Sokol. Teammates Claudia Mundy and Chelsey Bush also finished close behind in fourth and seventh, respectively, with times of 18:50.49 and 19:38.04.
In the women's weight throw, Campbell rookie DaVona Dula placed 11th with her toss of 13.38 meters, matching her mark from two weeks ago at North Carolina.
Two Camels placed in the top-5 of the men's 5000 meters, with Evan Darm taking third and Clayton Woll finishing fifth on the day. Darm checked in with a time of 15:50.46, while Woll notched a 16:09.70.
Competition will resume tomorrow at 9 a.m. at the Tolsma Indoor Track Center with the men's weight throw. The men's and women's 4x400 meter relays will close out the day at 5:30 p.m.