Colin Schultz anchored the Liberty men's 4 x 800 relay squad to victory and an IC4A qualifier on Friday at the Liberty Kickoff.
Competing on their new home track for the first time during Friday's 12th Liberty Kickoff, the Flames and Lady Flames got their 2017 indoor season off to a successful start. Kylie Polsgrove won the pentathlon, while the Flames were victorious in the men's 4 x 800 relay at the Liberty Indoor Track Complex.
Polsgrove and the 4 x 800 quartet each notched ECAC/IC4A qualifiers on the opening day of collegiate competition at the Liberty Indoor Track Complex, as did the trio of Jessie Glynn (women's pole vault), Dasiana Larson (women's weight throw) and Holly Arey (women's weight throw).
Women's Day One Recap Polsgrove began her sophomore season with a personal-best pentathlon score of 3,472, topping the field of 28 competitors, punching her ticket to the ECAC meet and grabbing the top spot on the 2016-17 Big South performance list.
Polsgrove finished first among the pentathletes in both the high jump (5-5.75) and long jump (personal-best 17-8.75), while also throwing the shot put a personal-best 29-10. Yet she did not overtake Hampton's Kaitilin Scott until the final event, when Polsgrove clocked 2:31.15 for the 800.
In the night's final event, Liberty finished 3-4-5 in the women's weight throw. Dasiana Larson led the way for the Lady Flames in third place with an ECAC-qualifying heave of 53-7.5.
Fellow junior Holly Arey recorded a personal-best 52-7.5 effort on her sixth and final attempt, finishing in the fourth position. She also eclipsed the ECAC standard and moved into the No. 5 spot on Liberty's all-time list.
Senior Catherine Oyarzun followed in fifth place, thanks to a 49-6.25 mark.
The defending champion in the Liberty Kickoff women's pole vault competition, Jessie Glynn placed third in the event on Friday. The redshirt junior made it over 12-3.5 on her third attempt, equaling her best-ever indoor clearance. Glynn qualified for the ECAC meet and moved to the top of the 2016-17 Big South performance list in the process.
Teammate Mariel Finger now ranks second in the conference after pole vaulting 11-9.75 for fourth place. Audrey Rabe added a seventh-place finish at 10-10.
Men's Day One Recap Last season, Liberty's 4 x 800 relay team of Andrew Crowell, Michael Todd, Bradley Prentice and Colin Schultz came in third in the IC4A final. The same four runners earned a return trip to the IC4A meet in their season debut on Friday, winning the race in a facility and meet-record time of 7:48.23. Schultz, the anchor leg, posted the team's fastest split of the day at 1:54.4.
At the end of the heptathlon's opening day, senior Zach Davis (2,914) and freshman Markus Ballengee (2,724) rank first and second among the field of 26 competitors.
Davis (22-7) and Ballengee (22-3.5) recorded the top two long jump marks of the day, while Davis won the heptathlon shot put event by three feet at 43-0.5.
Davis tied for the competition's best high jump clearance at 6-5.5. Meanwhile, Ballengee made it over 6-3.25 during the inaugural collegiate meet at the Liberty Indoor Track Complex, after he had won a high jump state title during the final meet contested at the Tolsma Indoor Track Center in March 2016.
The heptathlon will resume Saturday at 10:15 a.m. with the 60-meter hurdles.
Up Next The Liberty Kickoff will conclude with a full day of action on Saturday, beginning with the men's weight throw at 9 a.m. Running events will commence at 9:45, with the prelims of the women's 60-meter hurdles.