LISLE, Ill. - The Rockford University outdoor track and field teams returned to competition on Friday, April 13 at the Benedictine University Relays. The meet was originally scheduled to take place over a two day period of time, but was shortened to a one-day meet because of the terrible weather conditions on Saturday. Consequently, all of the scheduled events were not completed and final team scores are not available.
On the men's side the Regents took part in both the shot put and hammer throw events. Junior Jared Johnson (Miami, Fla.) was the top performer in both events for the Regents. Johnson broke the school record in the hammer throw with a distance of 38.69 meters and finished in 15th place. In the shot put, Johnson finished 26th with a throw of 11.89 meters. Devon Lawrence (Loves Park, Ill.) and Jonathan Ponce Cuiriz (Kewanee, Ill.) were the next highest finishers for Rockford. Lawrence set a new personal best in the hammer throw with a distance of 33.29 meters to place 25th. He also finished 54th in the shot put with a throw of 9.46 meters. Ponce Cuiriz placed 35th in the hammer and 47th in the shot put, with throws of 30.70 meters and 9.84 meters. Nick Thomas (Winslow, Ariz.), Alex Evitts (Aurora, Ill.) and Jamaal Ray (Kissimmee, Fla.) were the final three Regents to compete in the throwing events. Thomas finished 50th in the shot put with a throw of 9.69 meters, Evitts took 37th in the hammer with a distance of 26.21 meters, and Ray placed 41st in the hammer with a throw of 19.29 meters.
Rockford also had a pair of relay teams compete on Friday. The top finish of the day belonged to the distance medley relay team of Tyrece Ahrens (Kankakee, Ill.), Bailey Beard (Rockford, Ill.), Jesus Campos (Chicago, Ill.) and Christian Devant (Winnebago, Ill.). The Regents crossed the finish line in 12:34.33 to place sixth. Rockford also competed in the 1600 meter sprint medley. The team of Tyrece Ahrens, Bailey Beard, Jesus Campos and Christian Devant finished in tenth place with a time of 3:45.02 to establish a school record in the event.
The women's team had a total of six individuals compete in three field events on Friday. Kaylynne Terry (Streator, Ill.) was the top performer for the ladies, finishing seventh in the shot put with a throw of 12.23 meters. Katrina Kopfhamer (Portage, Wis.) and Nicole Melson (Harvard, Ill.) had the next best finishes in both the shot put and hammer events. Kopfhamer placed 25th in the hammer with a personal best throw of 35.17 meters and 45th in the shot put with a distance of 8.47 meters. Melson took 38th in the hammer and 40th in the shot put with respective throws of 30.12 meters and 9.10 meters. Danielle Hanson (Machesney Park, Ill.) and Ali Jaeger (Jefferson, Wis.) each set at least one new personal best on Friday. Jaeger set new personal bests in both the hammer and shot put events with throws of 18.65 meters and 4.95 meters to finish 51st and 52nd. Hanson set a new personal best in the shot put with a distance of 7.44 meters to place 49th. She also competed in the hammer throw where she finished 50th with a distance of 20.97 meters. Virginia Reed (Rockford, Ill.) was the final Regent to compete on Friday. Reed finished 40th in the long jump with a distance of 3.50 meters.
The RU outdoor track and field teams are set to return to competition next Saturday, April 21 at the University of Dubuque Invite.