By: Ryan Schadewald, sports information assistant
DEFIANCE, Ohio - The Bluffton University track and field team kicked off a busy weekend by participating in the Dick Small Memorial Invitational at Defiance College on Friday, Feb. 8.
The women were led by freshman Kayla Ferguson (Pandora/Pandora-Gilboa) took home a victory in the high jump competition with a leap of 1.47 meters (4 feet, 10 inches). Sophomore Sarah Heydinger (Tiro/Buckeye Central) finished right behind Fergurson by clearing 1.42 meters (4 feet, 8 inches).
Senior Maelinn DeLong (Archbold/Bryan) garnered a pair of solid finishes in the throws, as well. DeLong was third in the weight throw with a mark of 12.25 meters (40 feet, 2.25 inches), and she finished fourth in the shot put with a toss of 10.35 meters (33 feet, 11.5 inches).
Sophomore Stephanie Fox (Pickerington/Central) added a sixth-place finish in both the weight throw (10.95 meters) and the shot put (10.19 meters).
Leading the women's team on the track was freshman Hope Nixon (Johnstown/Johnstown-Monroe) who finished sixth in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:57.17. Senior Taylor Aurand (Traverse City, Mich./Armada) placed right behind Nixon with a time of 3:00.66.
Junior Ciana Hostetler (Sugarcreek/Gararway) placed ninth in the 200 meter dash with a time of 29.99 seconds.
The men's team was led by sophomore Omar Warlick (East Pointe, Mich./Clintondale), who finished fourth in both the 200 meter dash (23.67 seconds) and the long jump (6.04 meters). Freshman Brandon James (Waynesfield/Waynesfield-Goshen) added a top 10 finish with a 10th place mark of 24.15 seconds. James also placed fourth in the 60 meter hurdles with a time of 9.17 seconds.
Adding a seventh place finish in the 60 meter dash was Christian Parker (Urbana/West Liberty) with a time of 7.20 seconds.
The distance crew was led by freshman Austin Hernandez (Marion/Ridgedale) who was fourth in the 800 with a time of 2:13.49. Senior Joshua Ehlers (Defiance/Tinora) took seventh at 2:13.86. Junior Dakota Frost (Edgerton/Hicksville) added a fifth-place mark in the mile with a time of 4:42.70.
All-Ohio Championships at Otterbein University
WESTERVILLE, OHIO – The Bluffton University track team had a solid group of qualifiers for this year's All-Ohio Championships at Otterbein University on Saturday, Feb. 9.
In order to qualify for the meet, athletes must be in the top 16 in individual events or the top 12 in relay events on the list of Division III athletes throughout the state of Ohio.
The Beavers were led by junior pole vaulter Tori Bowen (Wapakoneta/Elida) who placed third with a clearance of 3.45 meters (11 feet, 3.75 inches).
Sophomore Remi Bower secured 13th in the high jump with a clearance of 1.51 meters (4 feet, 11.5 inches).
On the track, the distance medley relay team of Jennie Matteson (Guysville/Alexander), Tami Groff (Versailles), Bailie Barrington (Waynesfield/Waynesfield-Goshen), and Alexis Cash (Gaines, Mich./Lake Fenton) made a great comeback to finish in the 10th position with a time of 13:22.93. Barrington also added a 13th place finish in the 800 with a time of 2:27.66 seconds, less than a second away from her personal best.
On the men's side, freshman Brandon James (Waynesfield/Waynesfield-Goshen) led the charge with a seventh place finish in the triple jump with a leap of 12.64 meters (41 feet, 5.75 inches). James also placed 11th in the high jump with a clearance of 1.71 meters (5 feet, 7.25 inches)
Also adding a seventh place finish was junior Justin Kauffman (Smithville) in the pole vault, as Kauffman cleared 4.01 meters (13 feet, 1.75 inches).
Junior John Jones (Cincinnati/Walnut Hills) also competed in the All-Ohio Championships in the weight throw, finishing 15th with a throw of 13.88 meters (45 feet, 6.5 inches).
Junior Connor Gulick (St. Louisville/Utica) led the way on the track with a ninth-place finish in the 800 with a time of 2:01.65.
The Beavers will wrap up their regular season for indoor with the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Championships on Saturday, Feb. 16. The meet is set to begin at 1 p.m. at the George M. Smart Center on the campus of Defiance College.