Men’s track competes at Bucknell and Westminster

Published by , Author: Justin Kraus - Contributor, Date: April 18, 2016
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The Slippery Rock University men’s track team sent mostly runners to Bucknell University on Saturday and Sunday, with the rest of the team heading to Westminster College on Sunday. All athletes mentioned hit PSAC qualifications.

At Bucknell, the 4×400 meter relay team were the stars of the show with an event win. Junior Jacob VanHouten, senior Andrew Schroder, senior Savon Salter, and graduate student Monte Chapman clocked a 3:16.86 time to take home the event for The Rock.

VanHouten was another highlight of the day individually for the Rock, placing third in the 400-meter hurdles and hitting the NCAA qualifying time. Salter and Schroder also placed in the event, 11th and 17th respectively. Junior Logan Mooney also placed 20th in the event.

Chapman was joined by three other SRU runners to take fifth in the 4×100 meter relay. Junior Leroy McClain, freshman Collin Darby, and junior Brandon Vanderbrook combined with Chapman for a 42.10 time. Darby and Vanderbrook also placed 13th and 16th in the 100-meter dash. Darby additionally placed 15th in the 200-meter dash. Chapman also took home 12th in the 400-meter dash.

Sophomore Jeremy Parsons was the other NCAA qualifier on the day, placing 16th in a 10,000-meter run field filled with division one runners.

The 10,000-meter run started late, not getting started until 10:30 p.m.

“It was scheduled to start at 10:20 and I think it started 10 minutes late. Let’s say we didn’t know when it was scheduled and had to wait around for 5 hours for it to start,” head coach John Papa said. “No we knew when it was going to start and the good thing is that by that time of night its cool and the wind has died down completely, so its great for distance running actually. After 11 or so its pushing it because your fatigued. Its not a problem for distance guys.”

Senior Ryan Thompson and junior Tyler Palenchak rounded out competition at Bucknell in two additional running events. Both competed in the 1,500-meter run, although Thompson was in the invite section and placed 24th with a 3:52.82, while Palenchak ran the unseeded leg, placed seventh, with a time of 3:55.50. Thompson and Palenchak also placed 20th and 35th in the 800-meter run.

Action at Westminster was highlighted by sophomore Noah Bostick, who won the 110-meter hurdles with a 15.30 second time in the only track event for Slippery Rock on Sunday.

Slippery Rock added three top-four finishes in jumping events. Senior Adam Leeper provided two of them, with a second place finish in the triple jump and fourth in the long jump. Freshman Lance Thornton was the other, nabbing third in the high jump.

Sophomore Andrew Koksal finished field competition for the day with a sixth-place finish in the pole vault.

In throwing events, Slippery Rock was highlighted by junior JJ Ollio with three top-3 finishes. Ollio took home second in both the shot put and hammer throw, and third in the discus. He was joined by freshman Brendan Stamm, who placed eighth in the discus.

Slippery Rock will merge the squad for a home meet at the SRU open, Thursday, April 21st at Mihalik-Thompson Stadium.

“Right now if we have athletes that are somewhat injured were going to rest them up to get back to 100%. Some of the guys are potentially going to not be competing tomorrow. So that they will be fresh for next week in Ashland and a couple athletes are going to Michigan, Papa said. “The reality, right now most of the work is done. Right now we have to avoid injury, avoid doing too much in the terms of training. Its about fine-tuning techniques and getting our bodies as ready as we can.”

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