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Williams, MacDonald Star at Sykes-Sabock Cup
Redshirt junior Jocelyn Williams and senior Josh MacDonald were Liberty's top performers on the opening day of the 2014 Sykes-Sabock Challenge Cup, Friday at Penn State's Horace Ashenfelter III Indoor Track. Williams shattered her own school record with a 64-0.25 weight throw, while MacDonald was the men's 5K champion.
Through seven women's events, the Lady Flames sit in fourth place out of eight teams with 24.5 points, just one-half point behind third-place James Madison. No. 20 Penn State leads the way with 102 tallies.
Liberty is also currently in the fourth position in the men's team standings, totaling 33 points during Friday's half-dozen events. No. 7 Penn State tops the men's ledger as well, with 66 points thus far.
Women's Day One Recap
Williams' Liberty women's weight throw record stood at 62-6.5 before she broke it by a foot and a half Friday evening. Her record toss of 64-0.25 placed third in the event and ranks the New Jersey native No. 37 nationally.
Teammate Jennifer Nicholson also achieved a new personal best in the weight throw, reaching 51-1.5 for sixth place.
Audrey Bamford made a successful return to her home state, placing fourth in the 60-meter hurdles final in a time of 8.98 seconds. The junior had posted a personal-best time of 8.94 to reach the final.
Freshman Oasis Hernandez scored points in two events on the day, including the 60-meter dash and the long jump. In the 60, her personal-best 7.73 effort stood up for fifth place, just ahead of teammate Abigail Flower in sixth (7.77). Hernandez now ranks No. 7 on Liberty's all-time list for the women's 60 dash.
Hernandez also led a group of four Lady Flames who long jumped over 17 feet on the day, with a 17-6.75 leap. That performance earned eighth place in the event.
Fellow freshman Brooke Shelton shared sixth place in the pole vault, thanks to an 11-2.25 clearance.
Men's Day One Recap
MacDonald won the men's 5K in convincing fashion, crossing the finish line 13.5 seconds ahead of UConn's Bryan Fowler. MacDonald's time of 14:27.31 qualified him for the IC4A meet in a second event (also the 3K) and is the fastest performance in the Big South Conference this season.
It marked the third straight year that MacDonald has been a Sykes-Sabock Challenge Cup event champion. The California native won the men's 5K in 2012 before capturing the men's 3K crown a year ago.
Jeremie Bourget followed in seventh place in the 5K, clocking a 15:11.77 in his season debut. Meanwhile, Zach Barker took the eighth and final scoring position with his 5K personal-best time of 15:16.81.
Like MacDonald, freshman Stephen Racanelli qualified for the IC4A meet in a second event. His 60-meter dash time of 6.96 seconds placed sixth in the final and dipped under the IC4A standard. Racanelli had previously qualified in the 200-meter dash.
Kenny Scott, a defensive back on the Liberty football team, made an auspicious collegiate track & field debut. He came in fourth in the men's long jump with a leap of 22-9.75. Freshman teammate Aklesso Agama landed at a season-best 22-7.75 for fifth place.
David Scouten hurled the weight more than 60 feet for the second meet in a row, placing fourth with his mark of 60-10. Fred Fulton added a sixth-place finish, topping out at 55-11.25 on the day.
The Sykes-Sabock Challenge Cup will conclude on Saturday, with the day's first events (men's pole vault, men's shot put and women's triple jump) set to begin at 11 a.m. Running events will get underway at 12:30 p.m. with the men's mile.