The distance runners once again made a name for themselves here at ACU, with numerous awards being handed out at the Texas Tech Shootout.
On the women’s side, the dynamic twin duo of Allie and Michaela Hackett finished second and third in the 3,000-meter race, and Hannah Marut and Sierra Bennett finished second and third in the 5,000 meter race. Carnley Graham also ran well and placed fifth in the 3,000.
Elsewhere on the set, the ACU women dominated the weight throw with Wildcats placing third, fourth and fifth. Kayla Melger placed third with a new PB of 18.30 meters, Taylor Posey threw a PB of 17.44 meters, and Lonnie Smith grabbed the fifth spot with a throw of 16.87 meters. The three women also competed in the shot put, where Posey got sixth, Melgar placed ninth and Lonnie Smith finished in 11th.
On the men’s side, Avery Williams finished 13th at the meet, but moved to the top of the conference in the 400-meter dash with a time of 47.83 seconds. Morgan Knight finished both the shot put and weight throw in 5th place, and freshman Le’Dari Daniels finished with a time of 7.00 seconds in the 60-meter Olympic development dash. Ryan Cleary rounded out the men’s side with a winning time of 8:43.49 in the 3k run.
The next time the Wildcats run will be at the Southland Conference Indoor Championship. Head Coach Lance Bingham wants to make it clear that although the distance runners are strong, the track and field team is not a one-trick pony.
“Ryan [Cleary] is redshirting. He won’t be competing at indoor conference, but we’ve got several others that will be competing and doing well,” Bingham said. “Our girl’s distance runners are going to be strong and competitive as always, and our throwers across the board are going to be really strong as well. Avery [Williams] and our 400 guys are also doing really well, so we have more depth than just our women’s distance runners.”
The Southland Conference Indoor Championships are next Wednesday and Thursday in Birmingham, Alabama, with field events and the heptathlon taking place both days and running trials taking place Wednesday, with finals on Thursday.