Steve Feister celebrates his men's javelin school record of 234-7 on Friday. (The performance board lists the metric equivalent of 71.51 meters.)
Liberty's Steve Feister (men's javelin, 234-7) and the women's 4 x 200 relay squad of Dana Mercer, Erin Edmond, Nicole Leonzo and Kate Flower (1:37.33) each broke school records on a successful Friday at the Alan Connie Shamrock Invitational. The Flames also earned event victories in the men's 5K (Azaria Kirwa) and men's 4 x 800 relay at Doug Shaw Memorial Stadium.
Men's Day Two Recap Feister entered his redshirt senior season opener with a javelin personal best of 225-11, before bettering that mark three times Friday afternoon. The Pennsylvania native threw 227-4 in round two and 226-9 in round five before exploding out to a school-record 234-7 on his sixth and final attempt of the day.
Feister's final throw catapulted him from fourth place into second, trailing only Tennessee All-American Kyle Quinn (240-0) in the final standings. Quinn and Feister currently rank No. 1 and No. 2, respectively, on the NCAA men's javelin national list for 2016. Feister almost certainly qualified for the NCAA Division I East Preliminary Round meet with his Friday effort, as his mark of 234-7 would have placed eighth at the 2015 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships.
Feister took down the school record of 229-5, which was set by Elliot Galeone at the 2011 Big South Outdoor Track & Field Championships. He also moved up to second on the Big South's outdoor list, behind only Coastal Carolina alum Jason Flanagan, who incidentally placed fifth in Friday's men's javelin competition.
Denzel Pratt continued a strong start to his freshman season, finishing right behind Flanagan in sixth place at 218-10. Zach Davis followed in 17th place at 179-2.
The Flames took an early lead in the chase for the Shamrock Invitational Mayor's Relay Cup with their victory in the men's 4 x 800 relay in a time of 7:40.42. Liberty's winning team consisted of Andrew Crowell, Jacob Onifer, Colin Schultz and Bradley Prentice, with Prentice overtaking the teams from Clemson and South Carolina on the final lap.
Liberty's other victory came in the evening's final event, as Kirwa clocked a 5K time of 14:56.89 to win by six seconds.
Fellow distance runner Josh Showalter was the men's steeplechase runner-up in 9:25.71, while Louis Paone placed seventh in 10:04.29 in his collegiate steeplechase debut.
Before he helped the 4 x 800 relay team win, Schultz lowered his 400 dash personal best to 50.37 for second place in the event's open sections.
The quartet of Marquis Gilchrist, Greg Edwards, Jeff Jacobs and Stephen Racanelli took ninth place in the men's 4 x 200 relay with a 1:28.08 effort.
Blake Kohring's 110 hurdles time of 15.14 placed 17th of 31 competitors in the event's preliminaries.
Darrel Jones long jumped 22-3.75 for 19th place in the seeded section.
Women's Day Two Recap The Lady Flames' 4 x 200 grouping of Mercer, Edmond, Leonzo and Flower crossed the finish line in 1:37.33 for sixth place in the event. They took more than a half second off the school record of 1:37.99, set by Andrea Beckles, Charlene Hibbert, Chenoa Freeman and Jaime Watson at the 2008 Penn Relays.
In the day's other relay, Christieanna Apon, Hannah Scherlacher, Riley Brandon and Jasmin Sutton teamed up for fifth place in the women's 4 x 800. Liberty's time of 9:18.26 ranks ninth in program history and was the Lady Flames' fastest clocking since 2012.
Notably, the Lady Flames' 4 x 800 relay team fared well on Friday without using any of the four runners who were part of the indoor school record-setting 4 x 800 squad at the 2016 ECAC Division I Indoor Track & Field Championships.
Alyssa Karle sliced 12 seconds off of her steeplechase personal best, finishing third in 11:29.19. The sophomore from California now ranks No. 5 on Liberty's all-time list. Teammate Kammi Kurtz came in ninth in her steeplechase debut, clocking 12:08.98.
Redshirt freshman Lacie Robinson made an encouraging collegiate debut in the women's 5K, placing sixth in a time of 18:01.50.
Liberty had three of the top 14 finishers in the women's hammer, led by Dasiana Larson in eighth place at 160-8. Catherine Oyarzun was ninth in a season-best 158-6, while Holly Arey came in 14th in a personal-best 154-9, moving her into the Lady Flames' all-time top 10.
Mariel Finger cleared 11-5.75 on her first attempt for seventh place in the seeded section of the women's pole vault.
Erin Zappia came in 11th in the seeded women's high jump, thanks to the sophomore's 5-3 clearance.
Kate Flower's 100 dash time of 12.10 was the 12th fastest among the event's 77 competitors.
Kylie Polsgrove's first collegiate 100 hurdles competition resulted in a time of 15.00, placing her 19th of 42 entrants in the preliminaries.
The Alan Connie Shamrock Invitational will conclude with a full day of action on Saturday, with the day's first events slated for 9 a.m.