CMU Indoor Track Teams Impress at Chippewa Invitational
Provided by CMU
MOUNT PLEASANT – The men's and women's indoor track teams got a glimpse of their final goal in welcoming back the 2002 Mid-American Conference Champion women's indoor track team, and took a step toward it with their performances at the annual Chippewa Invitational Friday evening.
Both teams recorded sizable first-place finishes over competitors Detroit Mercy, Oakland, Aquinas, and Macomb Community College. The men scored 217.666 points, well ahead of runner-up Detoit Mercy with 84. With a score of 187, CMU took the women's competition over Detroit Mercy with 107.
Though the victories may be nice for Director of Track and Field and Cross Country Willie Randolph, the real goal was building a strong foundation for the team to build upon for the remainder of the season.
“I saw on the men's side what we've been looking for all year long,” Randolph said. “A combined program that's balanced and attacking from all angles, and really understanding that if they do their job from one side to the other they can really dominate.
“On the women's side we saw a lot of good things from a lot of underclassmen. We had a lot of people that really went in there and focused on getting things done this week within what we practiced, and with tired legs.”
Randolph knows that this is a good start for the season, but also that there is always room to improve.
“I expect greater times, I expect better performances, but we saw a lot of good things in just competing.”
The meet served as the first action for some of the throwers and most of the distance runners, and some of the Chippewas' top student-athletes have yet to make their season debuts.
Nevertheless, the Chippewas still managed to win 11 of the 15 events on the women's side, and nine on the men's.
Senior Kevin Bacon led the way with victories in both the long jump (22-07) and the triple jump (43-05.25). Fellow senior Emily Dienhart won the women's long jump (17-02.75).
Senior Kevin Mays won he weight throw with a toss of 62-08. Sophomore Timothy Reynolds won the pole vault (15-01) on the men's side, while freshman Halley Love took the top spot on the women's side (10-11.75).
Freshman Kyla Walworth won the shot put in her first collegiate action with a toss of 41-03.75.
In the women's high jump, sophomore Megan Heffner and senior Misha Lamphere both tied for first with jumps of 5-02.25.
Junior Renaldo Powell recorded the fastest preliminary race in the 60m hurdles, and then proceeded to win the finals, too, in a time of 8.19. Junior Tamica Harbour also recorded the fastest time (8.98) in the preliminary rounds, but finished runner-up overall as she was edged out by just three-one hundredths of a second in the finals after running another 8.98.
Experience and youth were both on display in the women's 60m dash as senior Kirlene Roberts took the event with a time of 7.8, followed closely at 7.84 by freshman Diamond Hamilton.
Hamilton also won the 200m dash (26.19).
The same happened in the 600m dash as senior Christina Farrow won with a time of 1:39.11, just barely edging out freshman Ravyn Baxter (1:39.76).
The long and middle distance teams had a number of top performances for the men and the women. Redshirt freshmen Ethan Lievense and Ben Wynsma finished neck-and-neck for first and second place, respectively, in the mile run. Lievense finished with a time of 4:25.45, followed just three-tenths of a second later by Wynsma.
Senior Holly Anderson also emerged victorious in the mile with a time of 5:04.86.
Redshirt freshman Kyle Stacks turned in an impressive performance in his first collegiate 3000m run, winning by nearly 15 seconds in a time of 8:46.82. Sophomore Nathan Huff, also running his first collegiate 3000m race, finished runner-up in 8:59.11.
Freshman Curt Mitchell won the 400m dash on the men's side with a time of 51.75, while sophomore Shawntoreah Turk lead a group of CMU student-athletes who swept the top five on the women's side. She finished in 58.79.
The 1600m relay teams for both the men (3:25.42) and women (4:01.94) won by large margins.
The Chippewas are back in action next weekend as they travel to Ann Arbor for the Simmons-Harvey Invitational on Saturday, Jan. 21. The meet is scheduled to begin at noon.