All To The Good For CMU In Jack Skoog Open
Provided by CMU
Andy Sneddon, CMUChippewas.com
MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. -- Plenty of first places, plenty of bright spots, and plenty to be hopeful for Central Michigan track & field and first-year coach Jennifer Swieton.
The Chippewas hosted their one and only home meet -- indoors or out -- on Friday as they welcomed Detroit Mercy, Oakland, Davenport and Alma for the annual Jack Skoog Open at the Jack Skoog Indoor Track & Field Complex.
It wasn't the indoors opener for CMU. That came a month ago at the Saginaw Valley Holiday Open. But Friday marked the Chippewas' coming-out party before a near-capacity crowd.
The university honored its 2003 men's team, the first to win a Mid-American Conference track & field championship, along with several All-Americans who were immortalized in CMU athletic lore with individual commemorative banners. The events included a Fastest Kid in Mount Pleasant race in which dozens of youngsters up to age 12 partook.
"Anytime you can have alumni back, especially those who have had the level of success that they have had, it's really great for the program," said Swieton, a former CMU track & field athlete who took over the program in July.
"I think the most exciting thing for me is that our student-athletes got to compete at home, which they don't get to do very much," Swieton said. "And we had a ton of fans, lot of people cheering. It provided a lot of excitement for all the races. It was a good way to kick off the season, fun day, I'm really excited."
The Chippewas placed first in 16 of the 28 events. CMU won nine events on the men's side, seven on the women's.
The highlight was provided by sophomore Nadia Williams, who won the long jump with a leap of 6.09 meters, tying Tamara Thomas' standard set in 2005.
Williams also placed second in the 200-meter dash as the Chippewa women swept the top four spots. Gabriella Beauvais won in 24.89 seconds, and she also captured the 60-meter dash in 7.70 seconds.
The CMU women also got victories from Calli Stemple in the high jump, 1.64 meters; Aisha Jackson in the 60-meter hurdles, 9.16 seconds; Marissa Dunn in the weight throw, 16.13 meters; and Erin Howard in the shot put, 15.19 meters.
On the men's side, CMU freshman Ryan Taylor captured the long jump (7.05 meters) and the triple jump (14.35 meters).
The other firsts for the Chippewa men came from Jack Dodge, 200, 21.96; Kevin Weiler, shot put, 17.14 meters: Luke Anderson, 800, 1:59.57; Shane Moffo, 60 hurdles, 8.14; Aaron Taylor, high jump, 2.0 meters; Jamar Hardy, 60-meter dash, 6.96 seconds; and Logan Targgart, weight throw, 17.23 meters.
"There's obviously some areas where we just need to gain some fitness and speed and all that kind of stuff, but for a first meet I think it went really well," Sweiton said. "I think there were a lot of people who did really well for a lot of different reasons. Some people just had really good performances, but also there were a lot of people who showed a lot of heart.
"Maybe the times or the distances aren't quite what they want yet, but you can tell they're going to get there. Just putting themselves on the line and ready to take chances, and I think we saw a lot of that. I think that was the most exciting part."