OXFORD, Ohio – While most of the Miami University women’s track and field team will have the weekend off, three RedHawk throwers will travel to Columbus for the Jesse Owens Track Classic, hosted by Ohio State University Friday and Saturday.
The three RedHawks competing this weekend are redshirt senior Samantha Gable (Greenfield, Ind.), sophomore Adaora Anunike (Galena, Ohio) and freshman Amelia Strickler (Bay Village, Ohio). All three will take part in the discus Friday at 6:30 p.m. while the trio will also participate in the shot put Saturday at 10:30 a.m. and the hammer throw at 1:30 p.m.
Over 450 athletes between men and women will congregate at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium for the two-day meet. Miami’s throwers will be competing against several Mid-American Conference foes in Akron, Bowling Green, Kent State and Ohio, while local rivals Cincinnati, Dayton and Xavier will also be competing. Big Ten foes Michigan State and the host Buckeyes, as well as Indiana State and Youngstown State and Division II powers Ashland and Findlay will also have throwers at the meet.
In the latest USTFCCCA Great Lakes Region Poll, Miami moved up one spot to No. 10 while Michigan State is the highest ranked team in the region that will be at the meet at No. 3. The host Buckeyes are fourth, followed by Kent State in fifth and Indiana State in sixth. Akron is No. 8 while the Bearcats are right behind Miami at No. 11.
Last weekend, the RedHawks were split between the Sea Ray Relays in Knoxville, Tenn. and the All-Ohio Championships, held at Ohio University. Despite being separated, the team combined to break or tie five school records in two days, led by redshirt senior Diona Graves (Fenton, Mo.), who set the 100m dash (11.62) and 200m dash (24.03) records last Friday at the Sea Ray Relays while finishing in the top four in both races. Senior Layne Baggett (Pittsburgh, Pa.) won the 100m hurdles at the meet as well, while tying the school record with a clocking of 13.31, which earned her MAC Female Track Athlete of the Week for the second straight week.
Graves and Baggett, along with senior Katie Scannell (Cortland, Ohio) and freshman Kala Allen (East Amherst, N.Y.), then combined to break the 4x400m relay school record on Saturday, winning the race in 3:39.82. At the All-Ohio Championships, junior Tori Paterra (Elizabeth, Pa.) topped her own school record in the javelin with a heave of 50.51m/165-8 to win her event while classmate Erica Howes (Fairfax, Va.) won the 3K steeplechase in 10:40.85, which ranks her third in school history.
With less than a month until the MAC Championships, several RedHawks rank near the top of the league in an event. Graves holds the top 100m time after her record last weekend while her 200m time ranks third. Baggett also boasts the top 100m hurdles time after her showing last Friday while Miami’s 4x400m relay team’s time last Saturday is also tops in the MAC. Allen is third in the 400m dash (55.63) while Scannell (55.73) is fifth. Freshman Laura Bess (Brownsburg, Ind.) sits third in the 1500m run (4:33.33) and ranks seventh in the 800m (2:11.88), while Howes is third in the steeplechase after her time last week and seventh in the 1500m (4:35.03). Sophomore Anna Lamb (Granville, Ohio) ranks third in both the 5K (16:51.18) and the 10K (35:05.76) in the league.
In field events, Paterra holds the top javelin throw with her school-record mark from last week while redshirt junior Ashley Zaper (Whitehouse, Ohio) ranks second in the heptathlon (4,819 points). Paterra’s throw also ranks fourth in the East Region and ninth nationally while Zaper sits 17th in the region. Baggett ties for ninth in the 100m hurdles in the region and 17th nationally, while Graves’ 100m dash time is 30th in the East Region and she is 50th in the 200m dash. Lamb is 25th in the 10K in the region and Howes is 43rd in the steeplechase, as well. The 4x400m relay team ranks 21st in the region and 43rd nationally.
At last year’s Jesse Owens Classic, Miami had its entire team in attendance and was led by Paterra’s runner-up finish in the javelin. Baggett was fourth in the 100m hurdles and Graves claimed seventh in the 100m dash. Kelley Miller and Rachael Clay, who were seniors last year, placed third in the 800m and sixth in the 400m, respectively.
Live results for this weekend’s meet will be available on MURedHawks.com. Following the Jesse Owens Track Classic, several RedHawks will head to the famed Drake Relays in Des Moines, Iowa from April 25-27 while the rest of the team will compete in Miami’s second and final home meet of the year, the RedHawk Invitational, on Saturday, April 27.