Geren Woodbridge finished as the IC4A decathlon runner-up for the second season in a row.
Day 2 Blog A team effort has both the Liberty men's and women's track & field teams in good position, entering the final day of the IC4A and ECAC Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships, at Princeton's William Weaver Track & Field Stadium. At the end of Saturday's events, Liberty leads the men's IC4A team standings and is tied for seventh in the women's ECAC race. Three Liberty men's athletes scored points in the IC4A meet on Saturday, including Geren Woodbridge's runner-up finish in the decathlon, Clarence Powell's third-place effort in the long jump and Elliot Galeone's seventh-place showing in the discus. As a result, the Flames have tallied 39 points through eight events. Host Princeton is currently second with 27 points, while Connecticut sits third with 25. On the women's side, Christina Mitchell and Krystle Matthews combined to notch six team points in the heptathlon, while Melinda Bendik again broke her own school record, taking sixth place in the hammer. With 17 total points in nine events, the Lady Flames share seventh place with Brown. They are just 10 points behind meet-leading Princeton, which has recorded 27 points thus far.
Men's Meet Recap Woodbridge started the day in sixth place in the decathlon standings but gradually worked his way up to his second consecutive runner-up finish in the IC4A decathlon. His final score was 7,063, 95 points more than he scored last year at the IC4A meet, when he placed behind only teammate Daniel Newell. Woodbridge's Saturday saw the Keystone State native record the competition's second-longest discus (126-6), tie for the second-highest pole vault clearance on a breezy day (14-3.25), throw the second-longest javelin (180-2) and run the third-fastest 1,500 (4:41.69) among the decathletes. Fellow junior Powell, competing in his first of three jumping events this weekend, recorded a consistent, impressive series in the long jump. The reigning Big South champion in this event, he posted five jumps of 23-10 or longer, saving his best (24-7.25) for last. Anthony Bryant was the next best of Liberty's long jumping quartet, sailing out to 23-2 for 11th place. Galeone's fourth discus attempt was his longest of the afternoon, stretching the measuring tape out to 162-3 for seventh place. The redshirt junior was part of a tightly contested event, which saw fourth and eighth place separated by just 27 inches. Liberty's 4 x 100 relay quartet of Roderick Spruel, Andre Washington, Kevin Fogg and Jacey Bailey qualified for Sunday's final with a season-best time of 40.73. Bailey also ran well in the 200-meter dash prelims, clocking a personal-best time of 21.43, missing the final by less than one-tenth of a second.
Women's Meet Recap Bendik keeps improving upon her own Liberty women's hammer record this season. On Saturday, she added two feet to her previous best with a 183-6 throw on her third attempt. She finished just 11 inches out of third, ending up in the sixth position. Mitchell finished the heptathlon with 4,599 points, claiming fifth place, while teammate Matthews totaled 4,573 points for seventh in the ECAC heptathlon debut for both competitors. The Lady Flames also had a successful Saturday in the running event preliminaries, sending athletes into Sunday's finals in four different events. The 4 x 100 relay squad of Melanie Sims, Chenoa Freeman, Olivia Charnuski and Alyssa Pegues got things started in fine fashion, in the morning's first running event. They reached the final with a season-best time of 46.34, making them the No. 3 quartet in program history. Charnuski also raced her way into the women's 100-meter hurdles final, posting times of 13.77 in the prelims and semifinals, respectively. Both of the Canadian sophomore's races were run into considerable headwinds. Jaime Watson was the fifth-fastest qualifier into the women's 400-meter dash final, completing her lap in 54.76 seconds. Finally, Jennifer Klugh made a strong final-lap charge to race her way into the 1,500-meter final, just six days after qualifying for this meet. Her time was 4:27.82, a new career best by three seconds.
The IC4A and ECAC Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships will draw to a close Sunday. The day's events begin at 10 a.m., but Liberty will begin competing at 10:30, when Ryan Bell, Galeone and Woodbridge throw in the IC4A javelin.