MARIETTA, Ohio – The Wilmington College men's track & field team rung in the New Year with a runner-up finish at the Pioneer Open hosted by Marietta College on Saturday.
The Fightin' Quakers finished with 105.33 points as a team, over 40 points clear of third place Marietta College. The University of Charleston of West Virginia won the meet with 149 points.
Simon Heys headlined the individual performances by etching his name in the school record books with a run of 15:25.82 in the 3,000-meter run. The record was formerly held by Pat Carroll with his run of 15:28.77 on Feb. 25, 2012. Teammates Evan Whitaker (15:41.63) and George Rickett (16:25.44) finished third and fifth in the event respectively.
Wilmington distance runners also showed up in a big win in the distance medley relay. The Quakers claimed the top four times. Taton Bertsch, Aaron Koch, Josh Cyrus and Heys won the event with a time of 11:24.50 while the Wilmington squad of Whitaker, Jeff Clydesdale, Rickett and Cameron Phelps crossed the finish line in 11:53.70. Gage Clemens, Dylan Combs, Zach DeAtley and Ryan Honkomp placed third and Austin Wampler, David Wahl, Patrick Bay and Evan Brandon earned a fourth-place finish.
In sprinting events, Koch headlined Wilmington's individual performances with an eighth-place finish (23.72 seconds) in the 200-meter dash. In middle distance events, Combs took fourth in the 500-meter run with a time of 1:27.33 while Cyrus (2:49.85) and Wahl (2:54.83) finished second and third respectively in the 1,000-meter run.
In jumps, Clydesdale and Anthony Gilmore finished in the top three of the high jump. Clydesdale jumped 6' 2 ¾" for a runner-up finish while Gilmore cleared 6' ¾" to earn third place honors. Max Queen placed fourth in the long jump with a mark of 21' 11 ½".
In throwing events, Wilmington had three individuals score the team points. Joe Shuga's 49' ¼" heave in the weight throw earned him fourth place while Andrew Pacifico finished two spots behind his teammate with a throw of 46' 6". Finally, Blake Jamison took seventh in the shot put with a mark of 45' 1 ½".
Wilmington returns to action next weekend at the OAC-NCAC-HCAC Challenge at Wittenberg University.