The Eastern Mennonite University track & field teams completed a busy weekend Saturday at the Jopson Invitational in Bridgewater. A few runners also participated the day before at the VMI/W&L Carnival in Lexington.
On Friday a trio of Royals ran in packed fields of the 5000m. For the women, Alli Eanes (Harrisonburg, VA/Westmont Hilltop) and Lanae Kreider (Harrisonburg, VA/Broadway) took 19th and 20th, respectively, out of 39 D-I, D-II and D-III runners. Eanes crossed in 19:46.72, with Kreider just a couple of steps behind in 19:53.70.
Dan Nafziger (Harrisonburg, VA/Harrisonburg) was one of 50 runners on the men’s side, taking 30th with a time of 16:10.33.
The rest of the EMU track team took part in Saturday’s smaller Jopson Invitational on a day mixed with sprinkles and sun. Freshman Hilton Morgan (Boyce, VA/Clarke County) made a splash in his first outdoor meet, grabbing second in the shot put. He was also the top school-affiliated participant with a heave of 13.82m (45-04.25ft) and firmly planted himself third on the EMU All-Time list. Aaron Sloan (Ooltewah, TN/McCallie School) was 13th with a top put of 10.40m (34-01.50ft).
Deverin Pate (Baltimore, MD/Paul Lawrence Dunbar) nearly won the hammer throw, taking second at 34.03m (111-08ft). Roanoke’s Paul LaPradd won with 34.96m (114-08ft).
Morgan was seventh in the discus, landing at 33.50m (109-11ft). Sloan took sixth in the javelin, with a best throw of 39.14m (128-05ft).
In the 1500m run, David Hooley (Bluffton, OH/Bluffton) crossed in 4:30.87, less than a second behind 11th place. Thomas Millary (Dillsburg, PA/Homeschool) was fifth in the small field of the 5000m with a time of 18:44.02.
Junior Sophia Holmes (Berryville, VA/Clarke County) highlighted the day by taking third in the 800m run, crossing in 2:26.56 and also moving into third on the EMU All-Time list. Malika Davis was 15th in 2:42.24 with Hannah Patterson (Puyallup, WA/Mountainview International) 16th in 2:44.95.
Naomi Good (Columbia, PA/Lancaster Mennonite) ran in the 400m and took third in 1:05.98.
In the field events, Jenni Beck (Archbold, OH/Archbold) finished in the middle of the pack in the shot put, taking seventh with a distance of 8.76m (28-09.00ft). Alyssa Bane (Strasburg, VA/Strasburg) came in ninth in the discus at 27.18m (89-02ft).
Beck and Bethany Hench (Carlisle, PA/Carlisle) also participated in the javelin. Beck had a best throw of 19.05m (62-06ft) while Hench was just short of her with 18.77m (61-07ft). Bane was fifth out of nine participants in the hammer throw at 31.40m (103-00ft), with Hench landing at 24.76m (81-03ft).
Next up for the Eastern Mennonite athletes is the Towson Invitational in Towson, MD, next Saturday.