JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Jan. 28, 2012) – The 34th annual Niswonger Foundation Track and Field Invitational came to a close on Saturday inside the ETSU/MSHA Athletic Center, with the ETSU men’s and women’s track and field teams putting together numerous top-five performances on their way to completing a quality weekend.
“This was by far our best meet of the year,” ETSU assistant coach Eli Sunquist said. “We had more personal bests set than I can remember. It’s very encouraging to see the amount of progress we’re making meet after meet. It’s also always nice to be able to perform at home, where we feel we compete at our best.”
ETSU’s best performances of the day came in the women’s long jump, as three Buccaneers made the top-10, including freshmen Katerina Vodova (Humpolec, Czech Republic) and Taylor Story (Germantown, Tenn.) taking the silver and bronze in the event, respectively. Vodova, the reigning A-Sun Women’s Field Athlete of the Week, leapt 5.68m to outleap her personal best of 5.58m, while Story marked a distance of 5.64m to crush her personal best of 5.43m.
Sophomore Chelsea Clark (Fairmont, W.V.) got the day started at 8 a.m., earning ETSU a top-10 bright and early by finishing ninth in the women’s 5000m. Clark’s time of 18:20.74 in the event was a new personal best, blowing by her previous mark of 19:34.84, set at last year’s A-Sun Indoor Championships, by 1:14.10.
The distance events continued with the women’s mile run, as ETSU junior Melissa Peters (Mesa, Ariz.) took third place in the event after completing her run in 5:22.43. The men’s mile ensued with freshman local product Adam Chase (Kingsport, Tenn.) taking fourth place after completing the event in 4:27.18.
In the afternoon, senior thrower Justin Burton (Bastian, Va.) set a career mark in the shot put with a 15.23m toss. The mark bested his previous career distance of 15.00m, and earned Burton fourth place in the event.
Freshman Jadon Short (Oak Ridge, Tenn.) stepped up in the finals of the men’s long jump, leaping 7.34 meters to take the bronze. Fellow classmate K’vonte Scott (Virginia Beach, Va.), who set the ETSU record in the heptathlon last weekend at the CNU Captains Invitational and Multis, finished the event with a mark a 6.65m to earn a new personal best.
Junior Tim O’Dell (Palm Coast, Fla.) continued his success from Friday, running in the 400m dash finals and finishing in third place to the tune of a 48.30 clip. O’Dell’s time set a new indoor personal best, seizing his 48.90 mark set two weeks ago at the Virginia Tech Invitational.
The winner of the 400m, Manteo Mitchell (unattached), finished with a time of 47.28 to make history inside the ETSU/MSHA Athletic Center. Manteo’s time in the event put him at ninth fastest in the world, and qualified him for the USA Indoor Championships.
The Bucs then put together multiple top-fives in the men’s and women’s 60m dash, as sophomore Emani Harrison (Columbia, S.C.) and freshman Demetria Edgecomb (Spartanburg, S.C.) finished second and third with times of 7.65 and 7.87, respectively, with Edgecomb’s time marking a personal best. Ifrish Alberg (Paramaribo, Suriname) added to ETSU’s 60m success, finishing fourth in the men’s final at a time of 6.86.
Edgecomb earned her second top-five of the day in the 60m hurdles, placing third in the finals with a new personal best time of 8.89. Freshman Nicole Alexander (Rock Hill, S.C.) also qualified for the finals with her time from Friday, and placed tenth with a personal best time of 9.27.
The final notable on the day for ETSU was freshman Filip Jalovy (Modrice, Czech Republic), who finished fourth in the mile run at 4:16.60. His time bested his previous career mark in the event of 4:24.30 by 5.70.
ETSU makes its final trip of the indoor season next Saturday, when it travels to State College, Pa. for the Penn State Sykes-Sabock Challenge Cup. The Atlantic Sun Indoor Championships will then take place at the ETSU/MSHA Athletic Center from February 17-18.
For more information on ETSU track and field, please visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the track and field links.