Kyle Wheeler long jumped a season-best 23-2.75 on Friday, winning the event at the Highlander Invitational.
Liberty freshman Daniel Klase provided the Flames' biggest highlight on a light Friday of action at Radford's Highlander Invitational. He notched an IC4A qualifier with his personal-best 192-10 heave in the men's javelin, while three of his teammates won their respective events. Klase saved his best javelin throw for last, as his sixth and final attempt exceeded the IC4A qualifying standard of 192-7 and moved him up from fourth to second in the competition. Klase, who was the top collegiate finisher on the day, becomes the third Liberty men's javelin thrower to qualify for the IC4A meet this season, joining Jacob DeValve and Steve Feister. DeValve finished just behind Klase on Friday, placing third with a 192-0 mark. Feister followed in fifth place at 184-1. Freshman Kyle Wheeler nearly posted an IC4A qualifier of his own in the men's long jump. He won the event with a season-best leap of 23-2.75 but fell just three-quarters of an inch shy of the IC4A standard. Mia Aghaji made it a Liberty sweep of the Highlander Invitational long jump titles on the day. She won the competition with her impressive sixth jump, which measured 18-9.75. Behind Aghaji, her freshmen teammates finished third (Melissa Rohwer, 17-7.5), fourth (Riley Brandon, personal-best 16-5.75) and fifth (Bari Minter, 14-11.25) in the event. The Lady Flames' other event victory came in the javelin. Newly crowned Big South champion Christina Mitchell won with a 128-0 effort. As in the women's long jump, she was followed by Liberty teammates in third (Jennifer Nicholson, 112-4), fourth (Grace Esden, personal-best 110-3) and fifth (Brandon, personal-best 108-11) place. Liberty placed 2-3-4 in the women's discus, led by Big South champion Mychelle Cumings. Her best toss of the day, 152-7, netted second place. Jocelyn Williams reached 138-7 for third, while Nicholson came in fourth at 136-0. In the women's pole vault, Rachel Houseknecht cleared 11-11.75 on her first attempt, putting her into a jump-off with VMI's Jennifer Sing for first place. Sing prevailed in the jump-off competition, leaving Houseknecht with a runner-up finish. The Highlander Invitational will wrap up with a full day of action on Saturday. Field events will begin at 9 a.m., with the men's discus and women's shot put. The day's first running event, the men's 4 x 100 relay, is set for a noon start time.