LEWISBURG, Pa. – Competition in the 2014 Patriot League Indoor Track and Field Championships concluded at Gerhard Fieldhouse on Sunday, and as the three-day event drew to a close, the Bucknell men’s track and field team found itself with plenty to celebrate. The Bison banded together to score in 13 of the 14 events contested on the final day of action, lifting themselves into second place in the team standings at the conclusion of the meet. Senior Ray Holmes and junior Christian Lupica each won individual event titles on the final day of the competition, earning first team All-Patriot League status, and Holmes was honored as the Male Field Athlete of the Meet, marking the first time that a Bison has received the accolade since Drew Fitzgerald in 2009.  

Navy was declared the Patriot League Indoor Track and Field Champion for the second consecutive season, finishing with 201.83 points. Bucknell compiled 173 points to claim runner-up status, and Army rounded out the top three with 135.33 points.

“Although our objective was to win this meet at home, I am as proud of this team as I have been of some of our championship teams,” reflected head coach Kevin Donner at the conclusion of the competition. “They showed a lot of grit and character for the entire weekend, and they never gave up. They worked hard right to the very end, and that type of character will pay off in the very near future.”

The Bison accumulated a slew of points in the field events, placing athletes in each of the three disciplines. Holmes defended his title in the triple jump with a winning mark of 49-03.75, becoming the team’s only double-event winner as he had already earned a victory in the long jump on Saturday. Junior Kevin Tapper completed a one-two sweep of the event for Bucknell, earning second team All-Patriot League accolades with a leap of 48-00.50 and claiming the sixth spot on the program’s list of all-time performers, while senior Alex Prieto rounded out the scoring, taking seventh place with a distance of 46-00.75. Senior Scott Weismiller’s performance in the pole vaulted added a few more points to the team’s total, as he cleared 15-03.00 to tie for sixth.

The shot put was one of Bucknell’s best events of the day, as Bison finished second, third and fourth. Junior Jack Fellows led the charge with a heave of 54-01.25, making him the third-best performer in the event in program history, while freshman Joseph Breen’s second place toss of 52-05.25 ranks him fourth on the all-time performers list. Junior Brian Monahan completed Bucknell’s stellar day in the circle, becoming the program’s seventh all-time performer in the shot put with a fourth-place mark of 52-00.00.

Lupica highlighted Bucknell’s performance in the sprints, winning the 60m hurdles with a time of 7.95 after breaking the school and meet record in prelims with a blazing 7.82. Sophomore Grant Reynolds finished third in the event with a personal best time of 8.22. Lupica raced to his second top-three finish of the day in the 60m dash, finishing in 6.90, a personal best time that makes him the fourth-best performer in the event in program history. Seniors Patryk Najbar (6th – 6.98), who also finished third in the 200 with a personal-best time of 21.93, Jacob Eaton Hall (7th – 7.01) and Kamal Riley (8th – 7.06) rounded out the scoring in the fastest event on the track, helping lift the Bison into second place as a team.

Sophomore John Westwood finished sixth in the mile with a time of 4:16.03, while Tapper also claimed sixth in the 400, crossing the line in 49.61. The Bison claimed three of the top five spots in the 500, led by sophomore Anthony Menza, whose time of 1:05.24 was good for third place. Senior Dennis Logan (1:05.49) and freshman Jacob Ashkettle (1:06.08) also scored in the event, finishing fourth and fifth, respectively.

Three Bucknell runners placed in both the 800 and the 5000, helping lift the team into first place in the standings after 13 events. Sophomore Ryan Johnson earned second-team All-Patriot League honors with his gutsy second-place race in the 800, just edging out the third place finisher with a time of 1:54.02. Junior Alex Jagelsky’s time of 1:54.71 earned him the fourth spot, while sophomore Zachary Moon crossed the line in 1:55.30, placing sixth. The trio of senior Tyler Erhard (2:28.41), Westwood (2:28.84) and senior Chris Oesterlin (2:30.10) raced into points in the 1000, finishing third, fifth and seventh, respectively.

While Navy squeaked its way back into first place after the points from the 3000 and the field events were factored in, Bucknell secured its runner-up status with two strong performances in the final races of the meet, the distance medley relay and the 4x400. The distance squad of Erhard, Logan, Johnson and junior Andrew Garcia-Garrison finished third with a time of 10:07.49, while Menza, Eaton Hall, Tapper and Lupica combined for a time of 3:18.94, edging out Navy by six one-thousandths of a second to take second place. All four members of the squad earned second team All-Patriot League honors.

Bucknell will have next weekend off before returning to action for its last meet of the indoor season. The Bison will travel to Boston, Mass. to compete in the IC4A Championships on Saturday, March 8 and Sunday, March 9. 

1. Navy – 201.83
2. Bucknell – 173
3. Army – 135.33
4. Boston University – 109
5. Lehigh – 105.50
6. Holy Cross – 25.33
7. Lafayette – 21
8. Colgate – 7
9. American – 1 

First Team: Ray Holmes, Christian Lupica
Second Team: Jacob Eaton Hall, Jack Fellows, Alex Jagelsky, Ryan Johnson, Dennis Logan, Anthony Menza, Kevin Tapper, John Westwood 

Jacob Ashkettle
- 5th in 500 (1:06.08)
Joseph Breen
- 4th in shot put (52-02.25)
Jacob Eaton Hall
- 7th in 60 (7.01)
- 9th in 400 (50.18)
Tyler Erhard
- 3rd in 1000 (2:28.41)
Jack Fellows
- 2nd in shot put (54-01.25)
Andrew Garcia-Garrison
- 11th in mile (4:20.18)
Ray Holmes
- 1st in triple jump (49-03.75)
Alex Jagelsky
- 4th in 800 (1:54.71)
Ryan Johnson
- 2nd in 800 (1:54.02)
Kevin Keller
- 10th in triple jump (44-08.25)
Dennis Logan
- 4th in 500 (1:05.49)
Christian Lupica
- 1st in 60H (7.95)
- 3rd in 60 (6.90)
Michael McGowan
- 12th in mile (4:23.16)
- 14th in 3000 (8:43.06)
Anthony Menza
- 3rd in 500 (1:05.24)
Brian Monahan
- 4th in shot put (52-00.00)
Zachary Moon
- 6th in 800 (1:55.30)
Patryk Najbar
- 6th in 60 (6.98)
- 3rd in 200 (21.93)
Chris Oesterlin
- 7th in 1000 (2:30.10)
Alex Prieto
- 7th in triple jump (46-00.75)
Grant Reynolds
- 3rd in 60H (8.22)
Kamal Riley
- 8th in 60 (7.06)
Mark Stafurik
- 14th in shot put (45-05.25)
Kevin Tapper
- 6th in 400 (49.61)
- 2nd in triple jump (48-00.50)
Scott Weismiller
- tied for 6th in pole vault (15-03.00)
John Westwood
- 6th in mile (4:16.03)
- 5th in 1000 (2:28.84)
Nathaniel Witter
- 9th in pole vault (15-03.00)
Distance Medley Relay – Tyler Erhard, Dennis Logan, Ryan Johnson,Andrew Garcia-Garrison
- 3rd (10:07.49)
4x400 – Anthony Menza, Jacob Eaton Hall, Christian Lupica, Kevin Tapper
- 2nd (3:18.91)