Buffs compete at home for the Jo Meaker Classic & Multi

Marcus Rogers, Editor-in-Chief

Lana Belmares and Maddie Hooker compete in the Women’s 5000 Meter Run on Saturday Morning.

On a cool Easter weekend, the West Texas A&M University men’s and women’s track and field teams competed in the Jo Meaker Classic & Multi on the campus of WTAMU. The second-ranked Buffs secured two wins, nine Top 10’s, one automatic Qualifier and one provisional mark and the Lady Buffs had three event victores, 20 Top 5 finishes, three automatic qualifiers and 11 provisional marks.

“I’m trying to watch my teammates lead on today,” said Innocent Murwanashyaka, junior criminal justice major and cross country athlete.

Lead on is an understatement as Benjamin Azamati broke the program record in the 200-meters running 20.52, which is the current fastest time in NCAA Division II. Cade Halliburton also broke his own hammer throw record with a toss of 190-7 (58.09m), He is now the only thrower in program history to have two marks over 58 meters.

Mahmoud Massoud picked up the victory in the discus with a mark of 166-2 (50.64m).

Brian Nganga and Tucker Raymond finished 24th and 25th in the 800-meters running 2:01.55 and 2:03.82 respectively.

In sixth place, Sam Sankowich finished in the 10,000-meters running 33:56.53.

On the women’s side, Zada Swoopes broke the Lone Star Conference and program record in the shot put for a third straight week as she recorded a mark of 55-4.25 (16.87m). She holds the top of the nations in shot put by more than six feet.

In the 100- meter dash DeOndra Green finished second with the third-fastest time in program history, 11.56. Leah Belfield wasn’t far behind in third with 11.68 and Alana Wilson finished fourth with 11.69. Valda Kabia also ran a seasonal best 11.92 to finish seventh .The quartet also ran 45.24, which is an auto qualifier and fastest time in the nation this season.

Taylor Nelloms competed in three events on saturday and came out with two wins. She placed first in the high jump after clearing 5-6 (1.68m) and a personal best in the long jump with a mark of 19-6 (5.94m).

“I think that (Coach Stewart and Coach Gibson) have done a great job,” said Mindy Shadden, Track and Field spectator.

The WTAMU track and field teams just got back from the Texas Relays and will be competing again at the Masked Raider Open in Lubbock and Flames Invitational in Cleveland, Tenn.

“We’re just trying to do the best we can each and every week and continue to improve,” said Matt Stewart, head coach for the WTAMU track and field program.

The second place Buffs and third place Lady Buffs are currently moving forward to attend the NCAA Championships in Allendale, MI on May 27th through the 29th.


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