RUSTON, La. – Louisiana Tech Track and Field enjoyed a successful start to the 2017 outdoor season as the Bulldogs and Lady Techsters defeated both UL-Monroe and Northwestern State in the annual Jim Mize Invitational Wednesday at the Jim Mize Track & Field Facility in Ruston.
In double-dual scoring, Louisiana Tech’s men defeated Northwestern State with 70 points compared to 49 by the Demons and ULM (71-52), while the Lady Techsters defeated NSU (59-52) and ULM (66-41) in team scoring on Wednesday in Ruston.
“It was a good day for both teams with a lot of positive results,” head coach Gary Stanley said. “We know there are some things we can improve on moving forward, but I am happy with some of the results we were able to get to start the outdoor season.”
In the men’s field events, Louisiana Tech’s Tamario Lattin recorded two first place finishes in the long jump and high jump with marks of 23-7.5 (7.20m) and 6-6 (1.98m), respectively. Lattin also finished in second place in the triple jump with a mark of 48-5.25 (14.76m). In the long jump, LA Tech’s Craig Jones finished in second place behind Lattin with a mark of 22-7.25 (6.89m).
Gregory Ballard posted a mark of 13-7.25 (4.15m) in the men’s pole vault to finish in first place, while Jordan Patrick placed second with a mark of 11-7.75 (3.55m).
The men’s discus throw featured former LA Tech standout and Olympian Jason Morgan, who recorded a first place finish in the event with a final mark of 174-9.5 (53.27m).
On the women’s side, Alies van Berkum finished in first place in the pole vault with a mark of 10-4 (3.15m), while Michaela Wheeler placed second in the event with a mark of 8-10.25 (2.70m).
In the throws, Rhea Thompson finished in second place in both the shot put and discus for the Lady Techsters with marks of 44-5.75 (13.55m) and 140-9.25 (42.90m), respectively, while LA Tech’s Asia Abron finished third in the shot put and fourth in the discus.
Senior Chloe Lautric placed second in the women’s high jump with a mark of 5-4.25 (1.63m), while Dominique Lewis also finished second in the women’s triple jump for the Lady Techsters (35-8.75). In the long jump, LA Tech’s Janiel McDonald finished in third place with a mark of 17-7.5 (5.37m).
The running events began with Louisiana Tech placing second in the women’s 4×100-meter relay with a time of 47.15, while four LA Tech student-athletes swept the men’s and women’s 1,500-meter run. Kacie Kaufman finished in first place on the women’s side with a time of 4:56.45, while the men’s event saw three Bulldogs in the top three spots ahead of a trio of ULM runners as Drake Heinz (1st – 4:03.43), Conner Killian (2nd – 4:04.75) and Scott Maggio (3rd – 4:12.30) finished in the top three.
In the men’s 110-meter hurdles, former Bulldog Tremaine Maloney competed unattached and finished in first place with a time of 14.07, while sophomore Jordan Patrick finished second with a time of 15.34.
LA Tech’s Darius Statham placed first in the men’s 400-meter dash with a time of 49.24 ahead of ULM’s Andre Johnson and five Northwestern State runners, while Nique’ Griffin finished in third place on the women’s side with a final time of 1:07.89.
LA Tech recorded another first place finish in the women’s 800-meter run as Elia Nero posted a time of 2:14.54 in the event, while Brandon Lewis-Graham completed the sweep on the men’s side with a time of 1:59.56 in the 800-meter.
In the women’s 400-meter hurdles, LA Tech’s Brandi Dobbin finished with a time of 1:05.48, while Lanorris Graden finished in first place in the men’s 400-meter hurdles after posting a time of 54.23. The 200-meter dash saw another first place finish for the Lady Techsters after Ona Giles finished with a time of 25.54. In the men’s 200-meter, Michael Pratt posted a time of 23.68 to finish in second place.
Louisiana Tech took home the top four spots in the men’s 3,000-meter run with Logan Pearce leading the way with a time of 8:54.64 to finish first. Austin Ballow (2nd – 8:56.96), Manoah Kiptum (3rd – 8:58.12) and Nathan Bolner (4th – 9:19.17) also posted top finishes for the Bulldogs ahead of five Northwestern State runners.
In the final event of the night, Louisiana Tech’s men beat out ULM in the 4×400-meter relay to close out a successful night on the track for both the Bulldogs and Lady Techsters.
Louisiana Tech returns to action on March 24 as the men and women travel to Houston, Texas, to compete in the annual Victor Lopez Classic.
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