Ayeni Breaks Program's Shot Put Record
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Junior All-American Yemi Ayeni led the Virginia men’s track and field team in the final day of competition at the ACC Indoor Championships held at Eddie Smith Field House and the University of North Carolina by breaking the program record in the shot put. Both the men’s and women’s teams took fifth place at the championships with the men collecting 76.5 point, while the women finished with 57.
Ayeni’s toss of 58’9.5” (17.92m) betters his previous throw of 17.50m from the Virginia Tech Invitational earlier this season, which then set the record. This marks his second NCAA Provisional qualifying throw in the shot put this year.
Senior All-American Emily Harrison and junior All-American Billie-Jo Grant also set NCAA Provisional qualifying marks in the women’s competition. Harrison finished the 3,000-meters in third with a time of 9.31.65 to qualify, while Grant threw a distance of 50’0.75” (15.49m) for fourth place.
In addition to Harrison, sophomore Stephanie Garcia and senior All-American Kara Scanlin also placed in the top-eight of the 3,000m. Garcia finished seventh in a personal-best time of 9:38.34 and Scanlin was close behind finishing eighth in a personal-best 9:38.91.
Junior Talia Wise crossed the 400-meter line in fifth in a personal-best time of 55.87, while in the 200-meters, senior Janne’a Bridgeford completed the long sprint in her best time of 24.56. Bridgeford also placed in the 60-meter dash, finishing the event in seventh in 7.59.
Freshman Rashawnda James rounded out those in scoring position for the women, taking seventh in the triple jump with a leap of 38’0.75” (11.60m).
For the men, senior All-American Jordan Orr and sophomore Andy Biladeau finished third in their respective events. Orr finished the 800-meters in his season-best time of 1:52.62, while Biladeau finished the 3,000m in 8:14.56.
Senior All-American Alex Tatu joined Orr in the top spots in the 800, taking fourth in his season-best time of 1:53.23. Sophomore Kevin Tschirhart helped Biladeau in the 3,000-meter scoring, finishing sixth in personal-best time of 8:19.86, while freshman Chris Clark crossed the line in his personal-best time of 8:25.66.
Senior Reuben Jones had a solid day for the Cavaliers, taking seventh in both the 60-meter dash and 200-meters. He finished the 60m in 6.89 and the 200-meters in 22.18. Freshman Conlon Bonner took eighth in the 200m, in a time of 22.26.
Junior Andrew Jesien placed fifth in the mile run in 4:12.45 and freshman Adams Abdulrazaaq had a seventh place time of 8.09.
Sophomore Arthur Gennari and freshman Greg Nelson put in solid performances in the high jump. Gennari finished fourth with a jump of 6’8.25” (2.04m) and Nelson finished seventh with a mark of 6’6.25” (1.99m).
Rounding out the men’s field events was senior David Lewis who took eighth in the pole vault (15’7”/4.75m).
The men’s 4×400 team of Bonner, Adbulrazaaq, sophomore Brian Lee and freshman Meikle Paschal finished fourth in a time of 3:16.18.
The team will split up next weekend with some heading to South Bend, Ind., to compete in the Alex Wilson Invitational, while some will head to Blacksburg for Virginia Tech’s Last Chance Meet. Both events take place on Saturday, March 8.
60m: Janne’a Bridgeford (7th 7.59); 200m: Janne’a Bridgeford (6th 24.56); 400m: Talia Wise (5th 55.87); Mile: Sara Casscells (5:02.44); 3,000m: Emily Harrison (3rd 9:31.65P), Stephanie Garcia (7th 9:38.34), Kara Scanlin (9:38.91), Lauretta Dezubay (9:47.79), Diana Burk (9:58.97), Samantha Stafford (10:03.09); 4×400: Virginia (3:51.42)
SP: Billie-Jo Grant (50’0.75”/14.50m P), Alexa Manning (47’7”/14.50m); TJ: Rashawnda James (7th 38’0.75”/11.60m), Katie Tershel (37’6.75”/11.45m)
60m: Reuben Jones (7th 6.89); 60mHH: Adams Abdulrazaaq (7th 8.09); 200m: Reuben Jones (7th 22.18), Conlon Bonner (8th 22.26); 800m: Jordan Orr (3rd 1:52.62), Alex Tatu (1:53.23); Mile: Andrew Jesien (4:12.45); 3,000m: Andy Biladeau (8:14.56), Kevin Tschirhart (8:19.86), Chris Clark (8:25.66), Ryan Foster (8:29.27), Trey Miller (8:29.75); 4×400: Virginia (3:16.18)
HJ: Arthur Gennari (6’8.25”/2.04m), Greg Nelson (6’6.25/1.99m), Meikle Paschal (6’4.25”/1.94m); PV: David Lewis (15’7”/4.75m); TJ: Marcus Robinson (46’6.25”/14.18m); SP: Yemi Ayeni (58’9.5”/17.92m P), Erick Pickle (52’10.25”/16.11m)