GREENVILLE, S.C. (April 11, 2009) - The ETSU track and field team went head-to-head against former SoCon rivals and current Atlantic Sun competitors at the Furman Invitational on Saturday, and the Buccaneers made some noise by winning nine events inside the Irwin Belk Track Complex.
The Bucs enjoyed a stellar day in the field events, as senior Josh Cloyd (Telford, Tenn.) won both the long and triple jump titles; while freshmen Lili Barboza (Oxford, Ala.) and Justin Burton (Bastian, Va.), along with junior Zachlynn Blackburn (Tazewell, Va.) won gold in their respective throwing events.
Cloyd turned in season best marks in both the long (23-02) and triple jump (47-09). Those leaps also propelled the senior jumper to the top of the performance charts in the A-Sun.
Barboza won the hammer with a toss of 153-07 and finished second in the discus (108-04) and shot put (36-08). Meanwhile, Blackburn was busy showcasing her skills in the discus by taking home the crown with a heave of 110-07. The Tazewell, Va. native also placed second in the hammer, finishing with a mark of 136-09. Rounding things out in the field events was Burton's effort in the shot put. Burton won the shot put with a toss of 138-09 and also placed third in the javelin (148-09).
On the track, the Buccaneer men's distance runners were busy running their way to titles as well.
Senior Jeff Crane (Taylors, S.C.) and sophomore Ben Ronoh (Sotik, Kenya) highlighted ETSU in the distance events. Crane paced his way to the crown in the 5000m, as he clocked in at 15:18.47; while Ronoh - who was making his Buccaneer debut in the steeplechase - turned in the fastest time with a mark of 9:38.34. Senior runner Michael Deren (Blasdell, N.Y.) also had a solid performance in the 5000m by finishing third (15:39.50). J Penny (Jonesborough, Tenn.) provided the Bucs with a third-place effort in the steeplechase, ending with a time of 9:52.98.
In the hurdles, junior Nic Chernikow (Seymour, Tenn.) and sophomore Ashton Bishop (Gate City, Va.) kept the winning ways intact for ETSU.
Chernikow ran his way to a title in the 110-meter hurdles by turning in a time of 15.75 in the event; while Bishop won the 400-meter hurdles on the women's side (1:05.46).
Other ETSU notables included Manny Gonzalez's (Maryville, Tenn.) second-place finish in the 800m (1:57.54) and Jordan Briggs' (Erwin, Tenn.) second-place effort in the pole vault (14-06.00). The Buccaneer throwers also had a successful day, as junior Jarrod Burton (Bastian, Va.) finished second in the hammer (146-11.50); while Pat Bearry (Wesley Chapel, Fla.) and Gavin Proffit (Boone, N.C.) finished fourth and fifth, respectively. Sophomore Matthew Allison's (Fairfax, Va.) heave of 42-05 was strong enough for a second-place finish and freshman Cornell Sneed (Miami, Fla.) placed fourth in the event (41-07). Sneed also finished second in the discus (136-02.50) and teammate Aaron Cagle (Cleveland, Tenn.) came in third (135-11).
The Buccaneer track and field team will return to action next weekend when they compete at the UNF Osprey Challenge, which is the same track the 2009 Atlantic Sun Outdoor Championships are going to be held at.
For more information on Buccaneer track and field, visit www.ETSUBucs.com.