For the Kent State men’s and women’s track teams, it felt great to finally be outside.
The teams set new school records over the weekend for the Flashes at the Northeast Ohio Quad in Akron for the first outdoor track event of the season.
Both teams competed in the track parts of the event on Friday. The pole vault was one of the most successful events for the Flashes despite it being moved inside due to rain. Christy Nell participated in the women’s pole vault and cleared 12’-7.5” on her first try and finished third overall in the event while Christian Champen helped the men place second by scoring a height of 17’-0.25”, becoming one of only 30 vaulters to clear 17’ or higher during the outdoor season.
Champen said clearing the 17’ mark outdoors is another milestone he can check off his accomplishments list.
“I cleared 17’ nine times my freshman year during the indoor season,” Champen said. “I went through a sophomore slump last year in both indoors and outdoors, so doing it now in the outdoor season motivates me because it gives me a better chance to become an All-American at the NCAA Championships in May.”
Kalli Barrett ran the 10th fastest time in Kent State track history in the 3,000-meter women’s steeplechase event. Both the women and men placed no lower than fourth in the meter races.
Saturday, both teams dominated on the field. Gabby Bailey, a freshman from Jamaica, earned his first career collegiate victory with a throw of 168’-3” in the discus. Bailey then placed second in shot put with a throw of 51’-1.75, which was good enough for ninth in school history.
Trevor Detillion ended up throwing a 185’-0.8” in the discus, the fifth furthest throw in school history. With that throw, the redshirt freshman from Chillicothe, Ohio earned his sixth discus title in the last two seasons.
Jake Wickey had a top mark of 196’-5” to place third in the men’s hammer throw.
The Flashes will compete next in the Tennessee Relays April 11-13 in Knoxville, Tennessee.
Brandon Lewis is a sports reporter. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.