Big day today for Carroll and Rocky athletes at the NAIA Indoor Track & Field National Championships in Geneva, OH. The big "winner" for the day clearly had to be Carroll College with 9 All-American performances, an individual champion and a total of three top-3 finishes.. But, Rocky also brought home an All-American plaque.
The biggest news of the day was the National Championship by Easton Padden of Carroll College. A graduate of Laurel HS, Padden was the long jumper over 17' with his vault of 17' 0 3/4" (5.20 meters). Padden had the best performance coming into the meet; and, he kept cool under the pressure. Congratulations to Easton!!!
The morning started out with Kathleen Mulligan of Carroll placing 3rd in the women's Triple Jump at 38' 7". That was only 1/2" out of 2nd place and just 2" behind the winning jump. That was the kick off to the All-American (A-A) smorgasbord.
Next up were A-A performances in the women's Mile with Bailey Hughes of Carroll finishing 5th @ 5:02.37. (Bailey is a Kalispell Flathead alum). In 8th was Ana Richter of Rocky (Billings Skyview) in 5:06.18. Also in the final, and just missing A-A status with her 9th place finish was Rachel Hart of Rocky (Kalispell Glacier) in 5:10.87. I believe that these 3 Montana natives all had personal bests in this event.
In the men's mile - Derrick Williams of Carroll (Columbia Falls) was oh-so-close to a championship. He took the lead at 1200 meters and held on until the last 100 metes. He finished with a stellar time of 4:12.55 (after a 4:12.34 PR in the prelims yesterday) to secure 3rd place and and All-American plaque. Lyle Pocha of Carroll (Helmville - Missoula Loyola) also made the finals and placed 9th in 4:18.81.
Carroll also had All-Americans in the men's 400 & 800 meter events with Stephan Delaney (Charlo) finishing 4th in the 400 at 49.56; and, Troy Solly had a solid 6th place in the 8000 with his 1:54.14.
In the women's 3000 meters, Carroll's Jordan Mathes ran 10:20.13 to secure A-A status with her 7th place finish. Teammate Shelby Sweeney finished 10th in 10:28.50.
Ashley Medeiros of Carroll (Missoula Loyola) threw 39' 0 1/2" for 22nd in the preliminaries of the women's Shot Put.
In the women's 5000 meters, Hannah Hafner of Carroll finished 12th in the finals running a fine 18:20.60.
Also competing in the men's Pole Vault finals was Josh Seeberger of Carroll, finishing 14th @ 15' 1".
In the women's Distance Medley Relay (1200 meters, 400, 800, 1600), Carroll College finished 8th in a time fo 12:14.9.
The men's Distance Medley Relay team from Carroll wrapped up a great weekend with a 2nd place finish. Comprised of Lyle Pocha, Troy Solly, Taylor Peliska and Derrick William, they just outleaned College of Idaho at the line with a time of 9:58.08. It should be noted that Pocha, Solly and Williams all competed in individual event finals earlier in the day.
Congrats to all the MT collegiate athletes - well done.
The Muddy Buzzard.