The indoor men’s track & field team traveled to Gambier, Ohio last Saturday to compete in the Kenyon Classic at Kenyon College. While the goal of every meet is to focus on the task at hand, for head coach Michelle Cross the mentality of Kenyon slightly differs.
“At the beginning of the season, we go from meets with easier competition to more challenging meets with Division I and II schools, such as Spire [Academy] and Youngstown [State],” Cross said. “We slow down towards the end of the season with a meet like Kenyon. The meet has a good environment for us to place people in new events before PAC’s.”
Waynesburg placed fourth in the eight team meet with a few runners leading the way.
Sophomore JaWuan Jones claimed the top time of the preliminary round of the 60-meter dash with a time 7.15 seconds. Jones would eventually take third place in the finals with a time of 7.19 seconds. He also contributed elsewhere and competed in a leg for the 4×200-meter relay.
Freshman Silas Mays placed fifth out of 24 runners in the 400-meter meter dash, posting a time of 52.93 seconds in the event. Mays also claimed a time of 2:09.1 in the 800-meter run, good enough for a 11th place finish. Mays also competed in the 4×400 meter relays.
Cross is impressed with the progress Mays has made throughout his rookie season.
“We put all of our athletes through certain tests every year that consists of running, jumping, etc. and Silas came third in our 30-meter dash,” Cross said. “He’s so good in the mid distances that we do not use him in sprinting situations. He definitely has a load of talent and was even very solid for us during the cross country season. Since he’s so versatile, we have to figure out how to use him down the long run.”
Sophomore Nate Jecelin contributed in the one-mile event, finishing ninth out of 43 competitors with a time of 4:42.9. Fellow sophomores Matt Durgin and Jordan Payne took the ninth and 10th spots in the 3,000-meters with times of 9:53.6 and 10:03.4 respectively.
In the field events, Waynesburg was led by shot putters Blake Feldner and Ryan VanTine. Feldner took fourth with a toss of 12.97 meters while VanTine had a throw of 12.18 meters, good for fifth place.
Cross was pleased with her team’s performance at the meet and hopes it leads to a strong showing at this week’s PAC Championships.
“The competition at Kenyon is very similar to the competition at PAC’s, so I was excited to see us score that high in the meet,” Cross said.
Cross also spoke on the men’s team’s journey to improvement over the last couple years.
“The men have to make strides for improvement at the PAC meet,” Cross said. “The men improved from eighth to fifth last season and I would like to see them to improve to third place.”
The PAC Indoor Championships will take place today at Youngstown State University.