LEWISBURG, Pa. – Ten different Bison earned first-places finishes on Saturday, highlighting a strong performance by the Bucknell men’s track and field team in its return to competition after a five-week hiatus for final exams and the holidays. The team hosted student-athletes from Bloomsburg, Georgian Court University, Gwynedd Mercy College, Hagerstown Community College, Holy Cross, Lafayette, Mount St. Mary’s and York College in the non-scored Bucknell Mini Meet, resuming the indoor track and field season with the one-day meet in Gerhard Fieldhouse.
“I was very pleased with our performances considering the long gap that we had between meets due to the holiday break,” said head coach Kevin Donner. “I can tell that our athletes worked out on their own over the break, and now we have 14 full days to train before our next meet. Today’s competition was a great rust buster.”
Bucknell’s sprinters earned the top spot in each of the four events contested, led by freshman Malachi Bostic-Wattley who won both the 60 meter dash and the 300 meter dash. His time of 7.11 in the shorter race just edged out senior Patryk Najbar (7.16), and he crossed the finish line at 36.84 in the 300, just six-one hundredths ahead of senior Kamal Riley (36.90). Senior Jacob Eaton Hall ran to victory in the 200 meter dash, qualifying for the IC4A Championships in March with his time of 22.53, and sophomore Grant Reynolds hurdled to a win over 60 meters, finishing in 8.36.
The Bison triumphed over the longer distances as well, earning wins in the 500 meter run, the 1000 meter run and the mile. Jacob Ashkettle just edged out sophomore Griffin Robertson (1:07.38) with a time of 1:07.24 in the 500, while sophomore Ryan Johnson led a sweep of the top three spots in the 1000 with a time of 2:31.86. Sophomore John Westwood cruised to victory in the mile, finishing in 4:19.82, and the team of Reynolds, Johnson, sophomore Anthony Menza and Robertson capped off a strong performance on the track with a winning time of 3:26.36 in the 4x400 relay.
Action on the field was just as hot, as the Bison claimed wins in three of the earlier events as well. Senior Scott Weismiller turned in a performance of 13-09.25 to claim the top spot in the pole vault, senior Ray Holmes jumped to victory with a distance of 22-02.50 in the long jump and junior Jack Fellows’ hurl of 58-01.00 earned him a victory in the weight throw. Fellows’ distance also qualified him for the IC4A Championships in March.
Bucknell will take another two-week break from competition, returning to action on Saturday, Jan. 25 for the Gulden Invitational. The Bison will host the annual meet at Gerhard Fieldhouse, and action is set to begin at 10 a.m.