With just one meet left before the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference championships, the Slippery Rock men’s outdoor track and field team added 32 PSAC qualifying marks, two NCAA provisional marks, and one automatic NCAA mark.
Senior Kevin Jewel automatically qualified for the NCAA Division II National Championships when he won the 800-meter run with a time of 1:49.82.
Jewel set a new school record in the event, shaving time off the one he set earlier this season (1:49.86). He is now fourth in the nation.
Jewel has become a great example and role model for the other athletes on the team because of his work ethic, head coach John Papa said.
“Kevin continues to amaze the coaches and other athletes,” Papa said. “He has a great deal of talent and has worked hard over the years to improve and become the elite runner he is today.”
Sophomore Tyler Melius also ran his season-best in the 800-meter with a time of 1:55.72 to finish 11th.
In the 400-meter hurdles, senior Ethan Geisler met NCAA provisional marks and took second with a time of 52.89 seconds. Junior Trevor Foley followed in fifth at 55.37 seconds and junior Nate Helfferich in 11th at 57.29 seconds.
Junior Jonathan Boyd took eighth in the 110-meter hurdles with a time of 15.02 seconds. Geisler also met PSAC standards in the event with a time of 15.45 seconds (11th place).
Senior Cameron Daugherty also met NCAA provisional marks with a clearance of 4.99-meters in the pole vault. Daugherty took second in the event, followed by freshman Cody Colagrande in fifth at 4.54 meters, and freshman Michael Shiverdecker in seventh at 4.39 meters.
“I think the vaulters did about as well as expected at Ashland,” Daugherty said. “All of us had specific things to focus on and we made that the focal point of the meet. This week will be a practice PSAC meet to set up a plan for championships next week, so we will be able to execute where we need to. I have high hopes for conference championships for our team.”
Six Slippery Rock throwers met PSAC standards in the discus.
Freshman David Reinhardt threw for 44.92 meters and placed seventh. Also qualifying in the event were freshman Zachary Wisneski at 44.38 meters, senior Kyle Toms at 42.17 meters, sophomore Nick Garuccio at 41.55 meters, junior Billy Martin at 41.20 meters, and senior Andrew Greenslade at 40.97 meters.
In the hammer throw, senior Joseph Kelly placed sixth with a toss of 52.07 meters. Kelly was followed by Reinhardt in eighth at 50.16 meters, and sophomore Nick Turk in 11th at 46.23 meters.
Toms took eighth in the shot put with a toss of 15.59 meters, followed by sophomore Trevor Miller in 15th at 14.93 meters.
Junior Victor Santoyo took third in both the high jump and the triple jump. He cleared 1.95 meters in the high jump and recorded 13.81 meters in the triple jump.
SRU’s 4×100-meter relay team of senior DJ Chisom, sophomore Monte Chapman, Foley, and junior Hans Lubich ran a combined time of 41.49 seconds, good for second place.
The 4-x400-meter relay team of sophomore Hunter Williams, Chapman, Foley, and senior Mason McLaughlin took fourth with a time of 3:18.35.
Juniors Morgan Elliott and Michael Beegle finished top-five in the 1-500-meter dash. Elliott ran his season-best time and took second with a time of 3:59.92. Beegle took fifth at 4:03.01.
The athletes that haven’t qualified for the PSAC championships will have one more chance to improve their marks at the SRU Last Chance meet on Friday.
Several SRU athletes that have hit their qualifying marks will be taking a break from competition this week in order to rest up for the championships, Papa said.
“We still have a few athletes that have been close to the standard and we hope they will capitalize on this ‘last chance’,” Papa said.
Among those attending the Last Chance meet will be Edinboro University and Clarion University, both in the Western PSAC.
Slippery Rock will be heading to the PSAC Championships May 9-11.