BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Competing for the final time before the Mid-American Conference Championships, the Miami University men’s track and field team looked like a team ready for its biggest meet of the year Friday at the Billy Hayes Invitational, hosted by Indiana University at the Haugh Track & Field Complex. The RedHawks won three field events while nine ‘Hawks recorded personal bests on the day, including four that made the all-time top-10 list.
Senior John Cantwell (Holland, Pa.) easily won the long jump with a monster personal-best leap of 7.58m/24-10.50, doing so on his sixth and final attempt. His jump vaulted him to second in school history as he just missed the school record by three-fourths of an inch. He won the event by over 17 inches while improving his previous best by nine and a half inches. Junior Sam Spallinger (Pandora, Ohio) took third with a distance of 7.04m/23-1.25 while classmate Calen Settles (Cincinnati, Ohio) was right behind in fourth with a personal-best jump of 7.03m/23-0.75. Settles also placed fourth in the triple jump (13.77m/45-2.25).
Competing in three throws events, junior Rob Stein (Villa Park, Ill.) claimed first in the discus with a throw of 53.25m/174-8, as he won by over eight feet. He also finished third in the shot put with a season-best toss of 16.48m/54-1. Stein placed sixth in the hammer throw in his third event of the day, slinging it a personal-best 56.47m/185-3, while he remains 10th in school history in the event. Freshman Paul Golen (Elmhurst, Ill.) came in fifth in the shot put with a big personal-best heave of 15.49m/50-10 while he was also fifth in the discus (45.22m/148-4).
In the javelin, sophomore Tyler Yee (Florida, N.Y.) was victorious, firing a throw of 57.30m/188-0 to beat Indiana’s Derek Drouin by seven inches. Junior Taylor Celestin (Mason, Ohio) came in seventh with a toss of 48.10m/157-10.
In the high jump, freshman Peter Stefanski (Aurora, Ill.) earned second with a clearance of 2.04m/6-8.25. He has finished first or second in the high jump in every meet this season, while he was one of just two collegiate jumpers to record a height in a field of 11. Senior Sam Wildeman (Naperville, Ill.) tied for third in the pole vault, topping a season-best 4.86m/15-11.25 along with vaulters from Indiana and Indiana State. He tied for second among collegiate vaulters with the second-best vault of his career.
On the track, senior Jarrod Eick (Hartville, Ohio) finished sixth in the 1500m invitational run in a personal-best 3:46.07, while he remained sixth in school history. In the regular 1500m run, junior Daniel Garleb (Pickerington, Ohio) crossed third in 4:01.40, his first time running the distance this year, while freshman Joe Stewart (Naperville, Ill.) was seventh in 4:09.30. In the 3000m run, senior Matt Marol (Evanston, Ill.) took sixth in 8:44.52.
Junior Jahquil Hargrove (Norristown, Pa.) took runner-up honors in the 400m dash in a season-best 47.23, behind only Indiana’s Chris Vaughn (46.75), while classmate Robert Balzano (Poland, Ohio) was fourth in a personal-best 48.10. Junior Wade Coffin (Willoughby, Ohio) also placed fourth, doing so in the 800m run in 1:52.20, another personal best, while he was second among collegiate runners. In addition to his long jump, Spallinger crossed in seventh in the 200m dash in a personal-best 21.95.
In the hurdles, sophomore JaShawn Combs (Dayton, Ohio) crossed in fifth in the 110m hurdles prelims in a personal-best 14.36 to qualify for the finals, though he did not run in the finals. His time ranks him ninth in school history. Classmate Skyler Coburn (La Porte, Ind.) placed fourth in the 400m hurdles in a season-best 53.62, clocking under 54 seconds for the first time this year, while he was behind an unattached hurdler and two runners from Indiana State.
The RedHawks placed third in the 4x100m relay as freshman Jason Bailey (Springboro, Ohio), Spallinger, Combs and Hargrove combined to clock a season-best 41.27, which just missed cracking Miami’s all-time top-10 list.
Miami looks to keep the momentum rolling next weekend as the RedHawks compete for a conference championship at the MAC Outdoor Track & Field Championships, hosted by the University of Akron from May 9-11 at Akron’s Lee R. Jackson Track & Field Complex.