Liberty Flames track and field team wins its second straight ASUN conference championship
With both the men’s and women’s teams beating their ASUN opponents by at least 68 points, the Liberty Flames men’s and women’s track teams won the ASUN Indoor Track Championships for the second year in a row in convincing fashion.
The Flames hosted the ASUN Championships Feb. 28 and 29 at the Liberty Indoor Track Complex, with redshirt junior Christian Lyon continuing his success at the ASUN Championships.
Lyon has proved to be a huge asset for the Flames this season. For him, winning the ASUN title was a very touching moment.
“It was very emotional — I was crying and stuff like that, just because last year I wasn’t able to run,” Lyon said. “Sitting out was very hard for me, but the people who I surround myself with, coaches and athletes, helped me get through it, so it meant a lot to me.”
Lyon placed first in three different events: the men’s 60-meter, 200-meter and 4×400-meter relay.
Sophomore Mackenzy Mizera led the women’s team and dominated her jumping events, placing first in the long jump with a jump that measured at 5.70 meters. Mizera also placed second in triple jump.
“For long jump I was seeded first, so that was really nice to help calm me a little bit,” Mizera said. “It was pretty great just to be able to compete honestly and win as a team.”
Head Coach Brant Tolsma will be retiring at the end of the outdoor 2020 season, after working as Liberty’s director of track & field and cross country for 34 years. Throughout the years, Tolsma has had an incredible amount of success in both the Big South and ASUN conferences, winning 80 men’s and women’s conference championships in both indoor and outdoor track.
With Tolsma retiring, Mizera expressed what it meant for the team to win the ASUN title in his last year.
“Especially for Tolsma, we really appreciate him, and it being his last year, that was a good going-out-with-a-bang type of thing,” Mizera said.
The Flames will travel to Charleston, South Carolina, as their title defense begins with the first outdoor meet of the year. The Charleston Southern University Spring Break Invitational is a two-day event taking place March 20-21.
Johnson-Olaotan is a sports reporter. Follow him on Twitter.