The men and women’s track and field teams competed at the University of Alabama for the Crimson Tide Invitational between April 7 and 8. The invitational was the first that saw complete teams of RedHawks and only the second race of the outdoor season.
Competing with Alabama, Kent State, Mississippi State, Missouri, Western Michigan, Southern Mississippi, Memphis, Louisville, Lipscomb University, Hinds Community College, and Shorter University, improvements were seen in times, while many runners brought in points.
Sophomore Danielle Collier had a career performance in the javelin throw. Her 153-feet 6-inch throw travelled six meters farther than second place and secured the sole victory for the RedHawks.
Collier held the fourth furthest throw in Miami University Outdoor Track and Field history prior to the meet. Moving up to second behind Tori Patera, Collier improved by nearly 13-feet from her past personal best.
Junior Jennifer Berilla and senior Tessa Brooks collected eight more points in the same event by placing fourth and sixth.
The throws crew contributed again with Redshirt senior Amelia Strickler and senior Arionna Darling in the shotput and seniors Zubin Coleman and Martha Szekely in the hammer throw.
Strickler’s throw of 54-feet and 6-inches placed third in the meet and is the second farthest throw by a Miami athlete in the event, trailing only herself by four inches. However, she said that she is “looking forward to moving that mark furthest this weekend.”
Strickler finished behind seniors Daniel Thomas of Kent State and Emmonnie Henderson of Louisville who both bested the previous meet record.
Darling’s throw of 49-feet and 3.5-inches took seventh in the event, while 174-feet 2-inches for Coleman and sophomore Katie Walter’s 167-feet and 3.75-inches would also place in the hammer throw.
Senior Grant Cole set a new personal best in the long jump by placing second with a 24-feet and 2.5-inch leap. Cole, formerly tied for the 10th furthest long jump by a Miami athlete, moved up to 10th on the list.
The women’s sprint crew was led by senior Alexus Jimson-Miller and freshman Olivia Bechtel. Bechtel dropped four tenths off her time at the Miami Duals, running a 55.59 to take the final point in the 400-meter dash.
Jimson-Miller, a two-time Second-Team All-MAC athlete in the 100-meter hurdles, earned two points for the ‘Hawks by running 13.88 seconds. Senior Vanessa Clerveaux of Alabama set a new meet record in the event with a time of 13.29 seconds.
Freshman Chris Torpy also saw improvement in the 1500-meters by running in three minutes and 50.41 seconds, dropping nearly six seconds off his Miami Duals time. Torpy spoke about the process of the race, saying “there really wasn’t a whole lot of difference” compared to last week.
A quick pace from the gun and competitive field helped Torpy run his fastest time as a RedHawk.
“Once the race started, I got out in a position up front where I would have easy opportunities to move if need be,” Torpy said. “I was boxed in for a little bit, but I found an opening to get back towards the leaders.”
When the pace quickened again, Torpy wanted to keep his form “as clean as possible all the way to the finish.”
Despite a runner falling in front of him within the final 200-meters, Torpy would finish fifth. Alabama senior Robbie Farnham-Rose established a new meet record in three minutes and 45.25 seconds.
The 5000-meters was a more strategic race that saw four RedHawks under the 15-minute barrier. Juniors Ryan Pitner and Jake Brumfield led the way for the ‘Hawks by taking home second and third in 14:47.72 and 14:49.57 respectively.
Freshmen Bradley Davis and David Coffey broke 15 for the first time in their careers with times of 14:52.95 and 14:59.85, respectively.
For the women, junior Maria Scavuzzo and freshman Carly Davis scored three points by taking seventh and eighth in the 1500-meters. Scavuzzo’s time of four minutes and 29.61 seconds was nearly a 13-second improvement from her last performance in the event.
Davis finished in four minutes and 32.68 seconds, which is under three tenths of a second from the 10th fastest time by a Miami runner. An unattached Martina Rodriguez demolished the prior meet record by over five seconds with a four minutes and 15.33 seconds time.
Sophomore Haley Sandvik dropped nearly 20 seconds off her past 5000-meters personal best set earlier this year during the indoor track season. Sandvik finished in 17:27.32 in her outdoor track debut for the event which placed 12th out of 48 runners.
The ‘Hawks will return to competition in Ohio for next weekend’s All-Ohio Championships at the University of Cincinnati between April 14 and 15.