OXFORD, Ohio – After trekking to Tennessee last week, the Miami University men’s track and field team will stay closer to home this weekend, traveling to Columbus, Ohio for the Jesse Owens Track Classic, hosted by Ohio State University, Friday and Saturday.

Action at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium gets underway Friday at 4 p.m. with the discus, which features senior Lucas Ferguson (Mount Vernon, Ohio) and junior Rob Stein (Villa Park, Ill.). The javelin is the only other field event Friday at 6:30 p.m. while the first two heats of the 5000m run begin at 5 p.m. and will feature a trio of RedHawks. The fast heat of the 5K is set for 8:20 p.m. and includes redshirt senior Steve Kiplagat (Iten, Kenya) while the day’s action concludes with the 3000m steeplechase at 9:40 p.m., which features fellow redshirt senior Brett Wagner (Toledo, Ohio).

The meet resumes Saturday at 10 a.m. with the pole vault, which has senior Sam Wildeman (Naperville, Ill.) and freshman Jacob Hensh (Uniontown, Pa.) entered, while action on the track heats up at 12:10 p.m. with the 4x100m relay. The final field event to begin is the triple jump at 2 p.m. when senior John Cantwell (Holland, Pa.) and junior Calen Settles (Cincinnati, Ohio) compete while the meet concludes at 4:40 p.m. with the 4x400m relay. Miami’s final track event will be the 200m dash however, at 4:05 p.m., as the RedHawks are not entered in the 4x400m relay.

Over 450 athletes between men and women will invade Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium over the weekend with athletes competing from schools such as Big Ten foes Michigan State, Illinois and the host Buckeyes. Mid-American Conference foes Akron, Kent State and Central Michigan will also be at the meet, as well as distance runners from Ohio. Other schools in attendance include local rivals Cincinnati, Xavier and Wright State, along with Indiana State, Eastern Kentucky and Youngstown State, while Division II powers Ashland and Findlay will also be at the meet.

Ohio State is the top-ranked team in the latest USTFCCCA Great Lakes Region Poll while Akron is second. Miami sits 12th in the poll while Indiana State, Michigan State, Kent State and Cincinnati claim spots eight through 11, respectively. Illinois is No. 3 in the Midwest Region Poll.

Last weekend, Miami participated at the Sea Ray Relays in Knoxville, hosted by the University of Tennessee. Cantwell led the way posting personal bests in the both long jump and triple jump, finishing third and eighth, respectively. Freshman Peter Stefanski (Aurora, Ill.) earned runner-up in the high jump with a PR while sophomore Tyler Yee (Florida, N.Y.) was third in the javelin. Senior Jarrod Eick (Hartville, Ohio) finished third in the 1500m showcase race while junior Daniel Garleb (Pickerington, Ohio) placed fourth in the 5K. Fellow juniors Wade Coffin (Willoughby, Ohio) and Kevin Brown (Lewis Center, Ohio) claimed sixth and seventh, respectively, in the 800m run, while junior Jahquil Hargrove (Norristown, Pa.) was seventh in the 400m dash showcase.

With the MAC Championships less than a month away, several RedHawks rank near the top of the conference in their respective events. Eick ranks in the top five in three events as he has the top 1500m time of 3:48.95 that he clocked last weekend, while his 5K time of 14:35.27 is second. Garleb (14:41.78) and Kiplagat (14:42.62) are fourth and fifth, respectively, in the 5K with Garleb’s time clocked last weekend. Eick is also fifth in the 800m run (1:51.89) while senior Jack Spilman (Chagrin Falls, Ohio) is fourth in the event (1:51.02). Hargrove ranks third in the 400m dash (47.97) while sophomore JaShawn Combs (Dayton, Ohio) is fifth in the 110m hurdles (14.48) and senior Matt Marol (Evanston, Ill.) is fifth in the 10K (31:18.75). Wagner ranks fourth in the 3000m steeplechase after his clocking of 9:24.02 last weekend, as well.

In field events, Stefanski ranks second in the high jump after he cleared 2.10m/6-10.75 in Knoxville. Cantwell and junior Sam Spallinger (Pandora, Ohio) sit first and second in the long jump with marks of 7.34m/24-1 and 7.29m/23-11, both recorded last weekend, while Cantwell’s jump ties for eighth in school history. He also ranks second in the triple jump after last weekend (14.55m/47-9). Stein ranks in the top five in three throws events as he is fourth in the hammer (55.40m/181-9), fourth in the shot put (16.22m/53-2.75) and fifth in the discus (50.94m/167-1). Yee is sixth in the javelin after last weekend (61.76m/202-7), as well.

At last year’s Jesse Owens Track Classic, Eick took sixth in the 1500m run, which he’ll run again this year, with a personal-best time of 3:46.32, which still stands and ranks sixth in school history. Stein finished sixth in the discus, also with a personal best that still stands (51.99m/170-7). Hargrove placed fourth in the 400m dash last year, while he looks to improve that this year. Sophomore Skyler Coburn (La Porte, Ind.) also had a top-five finish in the 400m hurdles, which he will also look to better with a year under his belt.

Live results for this weekend’s meet will be available on MURedHawks.com. Following the Jesse Owens Track Classic, Miami will host its second and final home meet of the year, the RedHawk Invitational, on Saturday, April 27.

--MURedHawks.com--