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Cumings, MacDonald Victorious at ECAC/IC4A
Liberty's Mychelle Cumings and Josh MacDonald both captured event championships, highlighting a successful Friday at the 2013 IC4A and ECAC Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships at Princeton's Weaver Track & Field Stadium.
MacDonald's IC4A steeplechase title contributed to the Flames' 16-point day. That score has the Liberty men's squad in second place through three events. Conference newcomer BYU leads the way with 32 points.
Meanwhile, Cumings won the ECAC discus crown, helping the Lady Flames tally 14 points. Liberty sits in third place through four events, trailing Boston College (27 points) and BYU (16 points).
IC4A Day 1 Recap
MacDonald led nearly wire-to-wire to claim his first career IC4A crown. The junior's personal-best clocking of 8:49.14 was the fastest winning time among the three Flames who have won IC4A steeplechase titles in program history (also Chris McGregor in 1998 and Evans Kigen in 2010).
MacDonald moved up to No. 2 on Liberty's all-time performance list and No. 13 on the 2013 NCAA Division I national list after slicing six seconds off of his previous best time. He improved from a third-place finish in the 2012 IC4A steeplechase final.
Fellow distance runner Caleb Edmonds also moved up from his 2012 IC4A placement in the 5K final. After placing seventh a year ago, Edmonds crossed the line third in Friday night's next-to-last race. His official time was 14:03.86.
ECAC Day 1 Recap
Cumings' first discus effort landed at 165-0 and stood up as the winning throw of the competition. The sophomore became Liberty's first-ever ECAC discus champion on the day before her 20th birthday, winning the event by more than seven feet.
Classmate Jennifer Nicholson added a fifth-place discus finish, moving up one spot from the 2012 ECAC meet. Her best throw of the day stretched the tape to 156-5.
Senior Khristina Kanagy ran well during the final 5K of her collegiate career, placing 15th with a personal-best time of 17:00.93. She lopped 13 seconds off of her previous best effort in the process.
Audrey Bamford leads Liberty's trio of heptathletes through the opening day of competition, ranking eighth overall with 2,779 points. The sophomore's top performance of the day came in the high jump, where she matched her season best with a 5-2.25 clearance.
Teammate Erika Jackson sits in 11th place with 2,721 points, after setting new personal bests in the shot put (32-2) and 200 (26.47) and matching her career-best effort in the high jump (4-11.75).
The IC4A and ECAC Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships will resume Saturday at 9 a.m. with the IC4A decathlon 110 hurdles and the ECAC heptathlon long jump.