NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Competing in Nashville for the second-consecutive week, the WKU track and field squads continued to improve, posting numerous season-best marks across the two-day Vanderbilt Invitational. Weekend action was highlighted by eight top-eight finishes by Hilltopper athletes against another strong field of competitors.
“I thought we had an okay meet over the last two days; we weren’t bad, but there was nothing that really stood out and we weren’t as good as we needed to be,” head coach Erik Jenkins stated. “We had a good meet last week here so now it’s time to refocus our efforts and work on consistency as we get ready for the conference and hopefully national championships.”
“This is a very, very competitive environment,” continued Jenkins. “Two weekends in a row Vanderbilt has provided outstanding competition in this venue and we’ve got to be able to do a good job when we have these opportunities.”
Friday’s action kicked off with Maor Seged (22.25) and Corey Parks (22.56) putting up the top two marks in the 200-meter event for the Hilltoppers this season. Seged finished 14th overall and second in his heat.
Likewise, in the high jump, Desmond Mobley achieved a Hilltopper season-best of 1.95 meters (6’4.75”), taking 14th overall. Mobley also finished 14th in the long jump, where he cleared 6.87 meters (22’6.5”), which ranks as the second-best mark by a Hilltopper this season.
In Friday’s men’s weight throw competition, both Stuart Nichols and Draven Sims registered personal bests on the day. Nichols finished in 15th place with a throw of 15.68 meters (51’5.5”), while Sims recorded a mark of 10.74 meters (35’3”).
Jonathan Hayden picked up a third-place finish in the 60-meter hurdles, recording a time of 8.04 in the finals after an 8.08 prelims mark in the fourth heat. Seged turned in a 12th-place finish in the event with a season-best 8.42 mark.
Three Hilltoppers qualified for Saturday’s 60 meter final including Emmanuel Dasor, Julius Morris and Eli Minor. Dasor was the only WKU to run in the event and finished fourth with a reading of 6.83 for his third top-five finish in the event this season.
Ventavius Sears qualified for triple jump finals after a third jump of 14.63 meters. The WKU senior went on to produce his best jump of the day on his turn, covering a distance of 14.65 (48’0.75”) to take eighth place.
In the 4x400m relay, the Hilltopper squad composed of Dasor, Julius Morris, Sears and Seged secured a fifth-place finish after running a 3:13.69, the second-best mark in the event this season.
On the women’s side, Jenessa Jackson recorded her fourth-consecutive top-10 weight throw finish as a throw of 18.17 meters (59’7.5”) earned the WKU senior a fifth-place finish. In Saturday’s competition, Jackson picked up another top-five finish in the shot put as she recorded a throw of 14.17 meters (46’6”) for fourth place.
Over at women’s pole vault Getter Lemberg tied her season-high at 3.45 meters while Morgan McIntyre, WKU’s top finisher in 13th place, came just shy of season-best mark, clearing a height of 3.70 meters.
Lindsey Hinken turned in a 5000-meter time of 17:43.86 in her first meet of the season to take home a seventh-place finish.
Savannah Ames added another Hilltopper season-best on the day, recording a time of 2:21.99 in the 800 meter competition for a sixth-place finish in her section. Alexa Brainard produced a 2:22.75 effort in the event.
Jadzia Beasley used a 7.69 60-meter preliminary time to earn a spot in the final where she produced a 7.71 reading to take home seventh place. Both marks were season-bests for the WKU sophomore.
To close action in the month of January, the Red and White will compete at the two-day Indiana Relays event hosted by the Hoosiers in Bloomington, Indiana, on January 27-28, before taking the following weekend off.
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