The Slippery Rock University men’s and women’s indoor track team dominated in Edinboro this past Friday as they won 17 events. The women won 12 of the 14 events they took place in and brought home 27 Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) qualifying marks. The men won five events and recorded 17 PSAC marks.
“I think we’re in a good spot, I think most of our athletes are competing at the highest level so far this year and going into the championships both are men’s and women’s teams have a real good chance of being in the top three,” Rock head coach John Papa said about the upcoming championships.
The Edinboro “Last Chance” meet was for athletes that had not hit the PSAC mark to quality and take part in the PSAC Championship’s on Feb. 23 and 24 at Edinboro.
With the Rock dominating in wins, multiple athletes also hit NCAA provisional markings. Senior JJ Ollio won and hit NCCA marks in both the shot put and weight throw. Ollio tossed a 16.97-meter shot put and a career-best 17.63-meter weight throw.
“If [Ollio’s] consistent he has a real good chance of being the top in the shot and the weight,” Papa said about Ollio at the upcoming PSAC championships “He’s going to have to have a big meet, he’s going have to have some more personal or year best,” said Papa about the possibility of Ollio going to nationals.
Ollio was joined by freshman John Eakin and freshman Ryan Heller in the shot put. Both Eakin and Heller hit the PSAC mark with their performances. Eakin finished third with a 14.54-meter throw and Heller in fifth with a 13.48-meter throw.
Also hitting provisional NCAA marks were redshirt senior and Courtney McQuaide and junior Maddy Marshall. Both McQuaide and Marshall have constantly been hitting the NCAA mark at pole vault and took home first and second again at Edinboro. McQuaide had a 3.85-meter clearance and took first, Marshall grabbed second with a 3.75-meter clearance.
Freshman Lily Plute also hit the PSAC mark in pole vault as she hit her season-best 3.50-meter clearance. She finished fourth and was followed by freshman Sarah Schneider as she cleared 3.35 meters.
Freshman Kaitlyn Boncyzk also almost hit the NCAA mark in her two-event winning night. Boncyzk cleared a 1.65 meters high jump, which was just 0.02 off the NCAA mark and also a season high. She also won the long jump with a 5.18-meter leap.
“As a freshman, [Bonczyk’s] doing pretty well, she’s in the top group of the high jump in our conference,” Papa said. “It’s good to see the young athletes competing at a higher level.”
Freshman Cecily Greggs joined Boncyzk with a second-place finishing at 1.60-meter high jump. Junior Kadin Hinish also followed Boncyzk with a second-place finish with a 5.11-meter leap in the long jump. Senior Aliyah Staten won the triple jump with a 10.58-meter leap.
Hinish also won the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 9.31 seconds. Freshman Megan Miller placed fourth in 9.55 seconds. Junior Asia Broadus and freshman Emma Fox followed behind in fifth and sixth. Broadus in fifth in 9.78 seconds and Fox in sixth in 9.80 seconds.
In the field, junior Abby Way, led the way for the women throwers as she won the weight throw with a 15.33-meter toss. Way also hit the PSAC mark for shot put with her third-place finish with an 11.76-meter toss. Freshman Rachel Hunchinson and junior Kati Palski also hit the PSAC mark in the weight throw, Hurchinson placed second with 13.75 meters. Palski finished third with an 11.76-meter toss. Senior Rachel Demaria also hit the PSAC mark with her second-place finish in the shot put and a 12.24-meter throw.
In the field for the men, senior Jesse Romanchak won with a 6.58-meter leap in the long jump. Also, in the field sophomore Jason Goodman finished second place in the triple jump with a 13.29-meter leap. Behind Goodman was sophomore Mitch Vleminckx in third with a 12.66-meter leap and a sophomore Ethan McGinnis in fourth with 12.62-meter leap. Also, freshman Jakob Graff hit the PSAC mark with a fifth-place pole vault clearance of 4.15 meters.
On the track, senior Collin Darby won the 200-meter dash in 22.47 seconds and freshman Troy Shattuck won the 800-meter run in 1:59.77.
The men also had five sprinters bring in PSAC marks. In the 60-meter dash, Darby finished second with 7.08 seconds. junior Nathan Kibbie came in third with the same time of 7.08 seconds. Kibbie also hit the PSAC mark in the 200-meter dash with a third-place finish in 22.71 seconds. Freshman Parker Reed followed in fourth with 7.13 seconds, junior Liam Okal finished fifth with a 7.16 second time and senior Isaac Moodie was eighth with a 7.22 second time.
As for the Rock women, every race from 800-meters down was won. They also had multiple PSAC qualifiers met in all matches. Starting with sophomore Alexis Marchando, she won the 400-meter dash in 1:00.04, followed by freshman Courtney Nunley in 1:00.53 and junior Brenna Kloes in third in 1:00.58 seconds.
In the dashes, senior Megan Stephenson won the 60-meter dash in 7.83 seconds and was followed by sophomore Amanda Oliver with 7.88 seconds. junior Emily Horstman also won in the 200-meter dash in 25.77 seconds and senior Aerial Dukes followed behind her in 26.33 seconds. The women took first and second in all four of the individual sprinting events on Friday.
Finishing things off for the men was freshman Zach Wise as he finished second in the 60-meter hurdles in 8.61 seconds, bring home the seventeenth PSAC mark for the men.
Freshman Lexie Firment won the 800-meter run with a time of 2:23.97 seconds. Shortly behind her was junior Bri Witherel, who finished third in 2:24.32 seconds, just shy of the PSAC standard mark.
Finishing things off for the women were junior Jill Norris and junior Lindsee Zimmer. Norris won the 3,000-meter run in 10:52.50. Zimmer finished in 19:56.41 to win the 5,000 meter-run, bring home the 27th PSAC mark for the women.
Slippery Rock will return to Edinboro next weekend for the PSAC Championships while looking to bring back another trophy after last year’s second-place finish.
Papa said that close to 70 athletes will be competing next weekend. It’s going to give them multiple opportunities to score points, as they score the top eight, he said.
“We’re going up there to score as many points as we can, and we should be in the top three, depending on how things go,” Papa said.