RC track team is impressive at Liberty Invitation meet
Sarah Witt led the Maroons with three top-five performances at the Liberty Invitational last weekend in Lynchburg. AJ Bernstein also had a big day for the men’s side during the weekend meet, which featured several Division I schools.
Witt, a senior captain, ran a season-best time of 15.6 in the 100H to finish fifth overall, first amongst Division III athletes. Witt followed the 100M Hurdles with a 4th overall in the 400H with a time of 1:05.4, a new personal-best. Witt ended her day with the fastest leg (59.6) of the 1600M Relay. She teamed up with Hope Flomo, Toni Duvall, and Rachel Dellehunt to finish fifth overall with a time of 4:04.
Flomo led the short sprints with an eighth place overall performance in the 100M (12.7). It was the fastest time by any Division III sprinter at the meet. She also placed 14th overall (2nd Div. III) in the 200M (26.4).
In the long sprints, Carmen Graves led all Div. III athletes in the 400M with a time of 58.8 for third overall. Not far behind was Rachel Dellehunt, running a collegiate-best time of 1:01.7, third amongst Division III athletes.
Leigha Schimmoeller led the women distance runners with a season-best performance in the 1500. She ran 5:14 to finish second among Division III athletes. Audra Aldrich tossed a personal-best of 99’2” in the hammer throw.
In the horizontal jumps, Brittany Cornett and Meagan Tolley tied to finish eighth and ninth in triple jump. Their jumps of 36’6” are currently ranked 22nd in the nation. Tolley also led the Maroons in the long jump with a 16’7” leap to place 13th overall and first amongst Division III athletes. Graves was not far behind with a jump of 16’5.”
On the men’s side, the Roanoke squad had some very strong performances. Tucker Cunningham had two standout performances in the hurdles. In the 110 hurdles, Cunningham crossed the line in 15.51 seconds, seventh overall and the second-best among Division III athletes. Later in the day, he ran 55.72 over the 400 meter intermediate hurdles for a personal-best and a fifth-place finish.
Peter Foxen led the throws with a third place finish in the javelin. His toss of 174′ 10” broke the 14 year old Roanoke College school-record.
Bernstein also had a big day for the Maroons, finishing sixth overall and second amongst DIII athletes in the 1500 with a personal-best time of 4:04.
In the horizontal jumps, the men had two performances worth noting. Rhett Sturgill set a season-best in the triple jump (41’3”) and Brandon Williams leaped a personal-best of 20’9” in the long jump.
The men and women will compete in the George Mason Invitational April 14, starting at noon.
Also, distance runner Tim Smith won the 10,000 meters at the prestigious Duke Invitational late Friday evening. His time of 30:55 was the best time run by a Roanoke athlete for 10,000 meters. Because of this, his time establishes a new record for the Maroons for this distance.
In the early going, Smith settled into the middle of the pack as a lead group went through the mile in just under 5:00 minutes. Smith left the second group near the mile to join the lead runners as they ran several miles at 5:00 minute pace.
Abraham Kemboi, a Kenyan running for UNC-Greensboro, led for most of the way until Jon DeWitt of Toledo took the pace with 2.5 miles to go. With a mile to go, Kemboi suddenly took the lead and left everyone except for Smith. Trailing behind Kemboi by 10 meters, Smith found a faster gear and blazed by the Kenyan with three laps to go.
Covering the final mile in 4:42, Smith raced to the finish unchallenged to set a personal best, an ODAC leading time and a time that sits high on the national Division III performance list.
In the women’s race, freshman Grace England ran a tremendous race to cover the 10K in 39:53.The second Div. III athlete in the field, the Pulaski County grad finished 16th overall. Her performance was the fastest ever for a freshman female runner at Roanoke College.