Scores & Schedule Close keyboard_arrow_down
Full Athletic Schedule keyboard_arrow_left keyboard_arrow_right

Team News

Liberty Produces ASUN Men's, Women's Outdoor Track Title Sweep

May 11, 2019  Jacksonville, Fla.  RSS
|   Share
Liberty celebrates its 13th straight men's outdoor track & field conference title.

Liberty celebrates its 13th straight men's outdoor track & field conference title.

Liberty's inaugural visit to the ASUN Conference Outdoor Track & Field Championships ended up as a resounding success, Saturday at Hodges Stadium. The Flames and Lady Flames swept the men's and women's team titles by a combined 136.5 points, winning nearly half (20 of 42) of the events during the two-day meet.

In its first year of conference membership, Liberty became just the second ASUN member (also Kennesaw State in 2017) to sweep the conference's four indoor and outdoor track & field championships. The Flames and Lady Flames previously took top honors at the 2019 ASUN Indoor Track & Field Championships at the Liberty Indoor Track Complex in February.

Liberty captured its fifth consecutive women's outdoor conference championship by a score of 260.5 to 170 over two-time defending ASUN titlist Kennesaw State. The Lady Flames won seven Saturday events, including a pair by senior Kylie Polsgrove (heptathlon and 400 hurdles), bringing their meet total to nine first-place finishes.

The men's team has now won 13 straight outdoor conference titles after halting Kennesaw State's six-year reign atop the ASUN by a 241-195 count. The Owls did not go down quietly, however. The lead changed hands four times on Saturday before a 1-2 finish by Michael Todd and Ally Kipchirchir in the men's 800 final put Liberty ahead to stay.

Liberty recorded seven of its 11 total men's first-place finishes on Saturday, including a trio by Alejandro Perlaza Zapata (200, 400 and 4 x 400). Azaria Kirwa completed a sweep of the two longest men's races (5K & 10K) with his 5K triumph Saturday evening.

Brant Tolsma was voted ASUN Men's and Women's Coach of the Year, making him a 75-time conference coach of the year. Tolsma has now guided Liberty to 114 conference titles during his 33 years at the helm, spanning five different organizations (ASUN, Big South, Mason/Dixon, IC4A and ECAC).

After taking down four meet records on Friday, the Flames added five more on Saturday. These included the women's 400 (Ty'Asia Dansbury – 53.28), women's 800 (Delaney McDowell – 2:06.53), men's 400 (Perlaza Zapata – 45.56), men's 5K (Kirwa – 14:30.14) and men's 4 x 400 relay (Nathanial Kirk, Jahquez Durham, Todd, Perlaza Zapata – 3:10.38).

Dansbury was a part of both of Liberty's school-record efforts on the day, beginning with her 53.28 clocking which eclipsed Jaime Watson's mark of 53.61 from the 2010 Big South meet and clinched an NCAA Division I East Preliminary Round bid.

Later on, Tanner Ealum (54.5 split), Dansbury (53.3), McDowell (54.9) and Cortney Dowling (53.1) produced a 4 x 400 relay school record in the final race of the day. The Lady Flames' record-setting time of 3:35.77 left them just five thousandths of a second behind race champion Jacksonville. The previous record of 3:36.56 was achieved by Kimone Green, Ealum, Dowling and Dansbury at the 2018 NCAA Division I East Preliminary Round meet.

Eight of the Flames' 13 individual event victories on Saturday came from seniors. Perlaza Zapata became just the second athlete in meet history to sweep the men's 200 (season-best 21.03) and 400 (season-best 45.56) titles.

Polsgrove claimed her third straight heptathlon conference title and the 11th in a row by the Lady Flames with a score of 5,131 points. She then struck gold in the women's 400 hurdles (personal-best 1:00.65) in her 10th and final event of the two-day meet, an effort which clinched the women's team title.

Kirwa completed a brilliant senior year in the ASUN Conference, which featured victories in cross country, the indoor 5K, the outdoor 5K and the outdoor 10K.

McDowell ended her career as a five-time conference champion at 800 meters (four Big South, one ASUN). Meanwhile, Todd bookended his career with men's 800 crowns. After claiming victory in the 2016 Big South indoor men's 800 as a freshman, Todd's 1:51.41 clocking was good for victory in the 2019 ASUN outdoor men's 800 on Saturday.

Pratt claimed his third consecutive conference javelin title with a 206-9 heave that headlined a pivotal 1-2-3 Liberty sweep of the event. Branson Rolle (177-9) and Caleb Hart (171-4) placed second and third, respectively, as the Flames scored 24 points to break the men's meet open late.

After being sidelined for two months due to injury, Rolle made his 2019 outdoor season debut on Saturday. The sophomore contributed 14 points, thanks to his javelin runner-up finish and a third place in the men's high jump (personal-best 6-8).

Freshmen also shone brightly, including a trio of first-place finishes during a 30-minute span on Saturday. Mackenzie Hainley (women's javelin - 139-8), Calli Parlier (women's 1,500 – 4:35.08) and Jada Thomas (women's 100 hurdles – 13.96) won their respective events. Meanwhile, Jacksonville native Abby Thorpe set a Liberty freshman record of 5-7.75 on her way to a women's high jump runner-up finish.

Liberty's remaining Saturday victories went to Dansbury in the 400 and Jeremy Davis in the decathlon. Despite battling injury, Davis scored 16 points with his decathlon victory (personal-best 6,394 points) and third-place finish in the men's long jump from Friday.

Final Women's Team Standings
1) Liberty – 260.5
2) Kennesaw State – 170
3) Jacksonville – 141
4) North Florida – 44.5
5) Lipscomb – 23
6) NJIT – 10

Final Men's Team Standings
1) Liberty – 241
2) Kennesaw State –195
3) North Florida – 87
4) Lipscomb - 64
5) NJIT - 55

Most Valuable Female Performer
Jordan Gray, Kennesaw State

Most Valuable Male Performer
Paris Williams, Kennesaw State

Women's Coach of the Year
Brant Tolsma, Liberty

Men's Coach of the Year
Brant Tolsma, Liberty

Women's ASUN Champions – Day 2
Ty'Asia Dansbury – 400 – 53.28
Mackenzie Hainley – Javelin – 139-8
Delaney McDowell – 800 – 2:06.53
Calli Parlier – 1,500 – 4:35.08
Kylie Polsgrove – 400 Hurdles – 1:00.65
Kylie Polsgrove – Heptathlon – 5,131
Jada Thomas – 100 Hurdles – 13.96

Men's ASUN Champions – Day 2
Jeremy Davis – Decathlon – 6,394
Azaria Kirwa – 5K – 14:30.14
Alejandro Perlaza Zapata – 200 – 21.03
Alejandro Perlaza Zapata – 400 – 45.56
Denzel Pratt – Javelin – 206-9
Michael Todd – 800 – 1:51.41
Nathanial Kirk, Jahquez Durham, Michael Todd, Alejandro Perlaza Zapata – 4 x 400 – 3:10.38

Other Women's Top 3 Finishers on Day 2
2nd – Ty'Asia Dansbury – 200 – 23.66
2nd – Chelsea Igberaese – Discus – 142-5
2nd – Makenzy Mizera – Triple Jump – 40-9.75
2nd – Noel Palmer – 5K – 17:15.79
2nd – Abby Thorpe – High Jump – 5-7.75
2nd – Jada Thomas, Ty'Asia Dansbury, Cortney Dowling, Alexis Wilson – 4 x 100 – 45.80
2nd – Tanner Ealum, Ty'Asia Dansbury, Delaney McDowell, Cortney Dowling – 4 x 400 – 3:35.77
3rd – Paige Demetriades – Javelin – 128-1
3rd – Tanner Ealum – 800 – 2:07.95
3rd – Jamie Gray – Heptathlon – 4,646
3rd – Jaiden Mulder – 100 Hurdles – 14.07
3rd – Alexis Wilson – 100 – 12.06

Other Men's Top 3 Finishers on Day 2
2nd – Jose Ballivian – Discus – 179-0
2nd – Ally Kipchirchir – 800 – 1:52.06
2nd – Branson Rolle – Javelin – 177-9
3rd – Caleb Hart – Javelin – 171-4
3rd – Kyle Mitchell – Discus – 164-4
3rd – Branson Rolle – High Jump – 6-8
3rd – Jonny Saintil – Triple Jump – 48-0.75
3rd – Jonathan Doss, Elijah Pierson, Greg Edwards, Jahquez Durham – 4 x 100 - 41.29

Women's Record Breakers
School Record – 400 – Ty'Asia Dansbury – 53.28
Old Record: 53.61 by Jaime Watson in 2010

School Record – 4 x 400 - 3:35.77 – Ealum, Dansbury, McDowell, Dowling – 3:35.77
Old Record: 3:36.56 by Kimone Green, Tanner Ealum, Cortney Dowling and Ty'Asia Dansbury in 2018

Meet Record – 400 – Ty'Asia Dansbury – 53.28
Old Record: 53.60 by Jacksonville's Courtney Walker in 2013

Meet Record – 800 – Delaney McDowell – 2:06.53
Old Record: 2:07.34 by Kennesaw State's Joyce Mattagliano in 2015

Freshman Record – High Jump – Abby Thorpe – 5-7.75
Old Record: 5-7 by Danielle McNaney (2002), Kena Butts (2003) and Kylie Polsgrove (2016)

Men's Record Breakers
Meet Record – 400 - Alejandro Perlaza Zapata – 45.56
Old Record: 47.00 by Kennesaw State's Jalil Braxton in 2014

Meet Record – 5K – Azaria Kirwa – 14:30.14
Old Record: 14:36.13 by ETSU's Kenneth Rotich in 2009

Meet Record – 4 x 400 – Kirk, Durham, Todd, Perlaza Zapata – 3:10.38
Old Record: 3:12.05 by Troy in 1998

New Women's NCAA Division I East Preliminary Round Qualifiers
Ty'Asia Dansbury – 400 – 53.28

Updates to Liberty's All-Time Women's Top 10 List
400 – No. 1 – Ty'Asia Dansbury – 53.28
4 x 400 – No. 1 – Ealum, Dansbury, McDowell, Dowling – 3:35.77
200 – No. 2 – Ty'Asia Dansbury – 23.66
800 – No. 2 – Delaney McDowell – 2:06.53
4 x 100 – No. 4 – Thomas, Dansbury, Dowling, Wilson – 45.80
Triple Jump – No. 4 – Makenzy Mizera – 40-9.75
Heptathlon Javelin – No. 4 – Kylie Polsgrove – 125-1
400 Hurdles – No. 5 – Kylie Polsgrove – 1:00.65
High Jump – No. 6 – Abby Thorpe – 5-7.75
Javelin – No. 8 – Mackenzie Hainley – 139-8
100 Hurdles – Tie for No. 8 – Jaiden Mulder – 14.07

Updates to Liberty's All-Time Men's Top 10 List
Discus – No. 4 – Jose Ballivian – 179-0

Up Next
Liberty will return to Hodges Stadium for the NCAA Division I East Preliminary Round meet. The event, which will determine the qualifiers to the 2019 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships, is scheduled for May 23-25.

The complete field of NCAA Division I East Preliminary Round qualifiers will be announced on Thursday.