New Concord, Ohio- The Wittenberg University Men's & Women's Track & Field Teams kicked off the outdoor season on Saturday (3/16) with an impressive showing at the annual Muskingum University Muskie Duals as the two squads combined to post 26 top-three finishes over the course of the cold and windy day along I-70.
The men's team picked up eight total event wins on the day, highlighted by senior Kyle Farnbauch winning an individual event title and also adding another relay event crown. Farnbauch broke the tape individually in the 110-meter hurdles with a time of 16.16 seconds, before running the third leg on the winning 4x100-meter relay that crossed the line first with a time of 43.83. He was joined on the relay team by freshman Grant Shepardson, senior Matt Entsminger and junior Brandon Johnson. Senior D'Anthony Dorsey also had a standout day for the Tigers in the throwing events, winning the hammer competition with a toss of 49.24 meters and finishing third in the shot put with a heave of 12.33 meters. Junior Jonathan Seay also had a solid day in the throwing pits, placing second in the discus at 40.57 meters and third overall in the hammer with a distance of 47.01 meters. Two additional Tigers brought home individual titles in a field event, including junior Jaycee Perry in the high jump (1.83 meters) and freshman Paul Varnadoe in the long jump with a leap of 6.09 meters. Varnadoe also finished third in the high jump after clearing 1.73 meters, while sophomore Zach Guyer was the runner-up to Varnadoe in the long jump after reaching a distance of 5.38 meters. The Tigers continued to impress in the running events, led by a trio of runners finishing 1-2-3 in the 200-meter run. Sophomore Maurice Graham topped the field in the 200 with a time of 24.34, followed by freshman Joshua Finkeldey (24.41) and sophomore Austyn Albanese (24.45). Albanese also picked up an individual event title of his own in the 400-meter run with a time of 53.13 seconds, while junior Garrin Bachinski topped the field in the 400-meter hurdles with a winning time of 1:01.90. Shepardson and Graham went on to finish 2-3 in the 100-meter dash with times of 11.91 and 11.93, respectively, while sophomore Caleb Austin rounded out the list of men's top-three finishers by finishing third overall in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 1:03.55.
The women's team was led by a pair of runners finishing the day with two event victories each, highlighted by the 4x100-meter relay team of sophomore Rylee Clary, freshman Alexis Walker, sophomore Preslee Rolf and freshman Stevie Plikerd breaking the tape in the event with a winning time of 51.43 seconds. Individually, three of those runners accounted for a Wittenberg sweep in the women's 100-meter dash, led by Walker winning the race with a time of 13.42 seconds. Plikerd placed second in 13.65 and Rolf was the third-place finisher with a time of 14.03 seconds. Clary also went on to win an individual event of her own as she topped a four-runner field in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 16.29 seconds. Two more Wittenberg runners posted individual event wins on the women's side in the running events, led by junior Alexis Gray finishing first out of 12 runners in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:24.48, which was six seconds faster than second-place finisher. Sophomore Marteana Newton also picked up the victory in the 400-meter run by a comfortable margin as she broke the tape in 1:00.68, with the second-place runner trailing three seconds behind in 1:03.76. Freshman Maxine Wishman was the final women's athlete to notch a top-three showing on the day as she finished second overall in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 1:12.46.
The Tigers return to action this weekend, March 22-23, with a trip down south to Atlanta, Georgia, for the Emory University Invitational.