CARBONDALE, Ill. – SIUE men's and women's track and field competed strong at the SIU Don DeNoon Invitational featuring two first place finishes.
The Cougars recorded a first place finish for both the men's and women's teams. Ivory Cassell jumped a personal best 18 feet, 6.5 inches in the long jump to earn a victory. Julian Harvey continues to improve, earning another win in the long jump with a personal best and Ohio Valley Conference-leading mark of 24-11.5.
"Julian has been an eager learner since the year started, and it is great seeing his mental and physical work pay off," said Jumps Coach Joey Pacione. "His belief in himself is getting bigger every single week."
On the women's side, several Cougars continue to earn personal best marks and times in their respective events.
The throwers on the women's team made a strong showing, starting with Catherine Jakich and a personal best in the weight throw at 40-8.25. Claire Nolan earned her best throw in the shot put with a toss of 46-4, good enough for sixth place. Megan Lauzon recorded her best in the shot put with a mark of 45-11.25, earning her seventh place.
The distance team followed those performances with three personal best time in the mile run. Allie Sweatt shattered her former best time by 13 seconds, finishing the race in 5 minutes, 18.51 seconds. Erin Kennedy ran the four laps in 5:20.71, and Haley Miller finished in 5:22.64.
Jessi Elder recorded a personal indoor best in the 800 at 2:29.96.
Nichyria Byrd ran her best time in the 60 meters, finishing in 8.11.
On the men's side, Mladen Hristov added a best mark in the long jump at 20-2.5. Nick Matthews threw a mark of 55-9.25 in the weight throw, a personal best for the freshman.
In similar fashion to the women's distance team, three men's runners recorded career best times in the mile. Winning his heat was Matthew O'Connor, finishing in 4:23.15. Scott Woodard ran his best time of 4:26.37, while Tyler Owens finished in 4:33.20. Though not a personal best, Luke Padesky placed the highest in the mile for SIUE, finishing in fifth with a time of 4:22.30.
"This week we narrowed our focus and only competed in one or two events per athlete," said SIUE Interim Head Coach Scott Block. "This strategy paid off with lots of big PRs and big jumps in the OVC rankings."
Both teams travels to the GVSU Big Meet next Friday and Saturday.