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O'Connor Sparks SIUE at OVC Outdoor Meet

Matt O'Connor was the runner-up in the 800.
Matt O'Connor was the runner-up in the 800.

OXFORD, Ala. – Matt O'Connor and Keith Meyer each earned second-place finishes on the final day of the Ohio Valley Conference Outdoor Track and Field Championships.

O'Connor ran the 800 in 1 minute, 55.17 seconds, edging Eastern Kentucky's Nickson Rotich for the higher spot on the medal stand by 0.15 seconds.

"Matt ran with guts today," said SIUE distance coach Kayla Brown. "His race instincts are what makes us most proud of him. The race was a fight for every step."

Meyer also scored eight team points for his finish in the 5,000. He ran the event in 14:59.05.

"The men's 5K was a tactical race," said Brown. "Keith stayed the path and ran smart. He finished strong and added another honor to his career with the second-place finish. When the race is on, so his Keith, always."

"We had a lot of production from our underclassmen this weekend," said SIUE Head Coach Scott Block. "I want to thank the seniors for their dedication to the program. I also want to thank my staff for their commitment and expertise this season."

SIUE triple jumpers also were strong with four men's finishers in the top nine. Ezekiel Clerk placed third with a jump of 14.31 meters. Mladen Hristov (13.989m) and Logan Webb (13.79m) placed  sixth and seventh, respectively. Josh White took ninth at 13.28m.

"Ezekiel had the jump of his life at the perfect time," said SIUE jumps coach Joey Pacione. "He went into this meet with the goal of finishing in the top three, and he needed to jump farther on his last attempt to get to the medal stand. The resolve and determination he showed was as much as you could ever ask. I'm elated for him that he gets to end his career on that high note."

As a team, the SIUE men placed sixth with 72 points. Southeast Missouri won the meet with 182 points. The SIUE women took ninth overall with 47.33 points. Eastern Illinois took the women's team title with 128 points.

Below are more highlights from the OVC Championships.

  • Haley Miller places herself at No. 3 all-time in the 1,500 with a personal best if 4:37.73. She took eighth place in the event for the Cougars.
  • Ben Scamihorn places in the top eighth for the second time at the Championships, taking seventh in the 1,500 with a time of 3:55.63
  • Brittney Gibbs earned her fourth All-OVC honor in the triple jump with a fifth-place finish. She jumped 12.06 meters.
  • Alec Dutton added to SIUE's scoring in the shot put with an eighth-place finish at 15.20 meters.
  • Lizzie Virgl just missed the top eight in the javelin with her personal best throw of 35.22 meters.
  • Austin Lynch captures a personal best in the javelin with a throw of 43.15 meters.
  • Bobby Kaluza placed sixth in the 110 hurdles with a wind-aided time of 14.76.
Harvey, Meyer Earn OVC Honors
February 15, 2017 Harvey, Meyer Earn OVC Honors
Harvey, Virgl Honored by OVC
February 8, 2017 Harvey, Virgl Honored by OVC
Harvey Earns OVC Honor
January 18, 2017 Harvey Earns OVC Honor