Thunder Men Place Second at MIAA Indoor Meet

Thunder Men Place Second at MIAA Indoor Meet

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- The Trine men's track and field team placed second at the MIAA Indoor Track and Field Championships, hosted by Calvin College.

Thunder performers combined to score the team 163.5 points to finish 31.5 points behind MIAA champion Calvin. Trine competitors combined to notch four first-place finishes. Jeffery Barnett (Fremont, Ohio / Fremont-Ross), Patrick Richardville (Leo, Ind. / Leo) and Mitch Martin (Monroe, Mich. / Monroe) earned All-MIAA honors for winning their events. Adam Schaaf (Greentown, Ind. / Eastern) and Mat Bollan (Pleasant Lake, Ind. / Angola) each set new school-records in the meet.

Barnett got things started off right for the Thunder with a win in the long jump. The sophomore jumped a distance of 7.22 meters (23 feet, 8.25 inches) to win the event by half a meter. Barnett earned gold at the MIAA meet for the first time in his career and set a meet record in the process. Eric Townsend (Greenwood, Ind. / Roncalli) added a fourth place finish and Peyton Watson (Upland, Ind. / Eastbrook) placed eighth to add points for Trine in the event.

Barnett also led the Thunder in the 200-meter dash, placing first in his debut collegiate performance in  the event. Barnett ran a time of 22.68 seconds, just 0.3 seconds shy of the school record. Jasper Bassett (Auburn, Ind. / DeKalb) placed fourth with a personal-best time of 23.05 seconds. Jacob Root (Vicksburg, Mich. / Vicksburg) also picked up points with a personal-best time to notch sixth-place finish.

Richardville added to Trine's success in sprinting events with a win in the 60-meter dash. The junior ran a time of 7.05 seconds for a new season-best. Barnett and James Washington (Michigan City, Ind. / Michigan City) added personal-bests to score points for the Thunder. Barnett placed second in 7.10 seconds, while Washington crossed the finish line in 7.25 seconds to place fifth.

Martin paced a dominating performance in the weight throw as the Thunder took home the top three spots. Martin unleashed a personal-best throw of 16.16 meters (53 feet, 0.25 inches) to take home his first career gold at a conference meet. Andrew Bunting (Brunswick, Ohio / Brunswick) and Nick Gerber (Goshen, Ind. / Goshen) rounded out the top three. Gerber set a new personal-best, as did Paul Arend (Hicksville, Ohio / Fairview), who placed eighth.

Trine's team of shot put throwers notched the two-through-four spots in the event. Derek Scott (Niles, Mich. / Niles) led the way with a throw of 14.01 meters (45 feet, 11.75 inches). Gerber added a third-place finish, while Skyler Dunckley (Cedar, Mich. / Traverse City West) placed fourth. Zach DeMeester (Coldwater, Mich. / Coldwater) rounded things out with a seventh-place finish.

Three Thunder performers also scored in the pole vault. Jacob Payne (LaPorte, Ind. / LaPorte) and Trey Waagen (Horton, Mich. / Hanover-Horton) each cleared 4.45 meters (14 feet, 7.25 inches) to tie for second. Ryan Haarer (Goshen, Ind. / Northridge) placed fourth.

The 4-x-400-meter relay team placed second to lead performances elsewhere on the track. Bassett, Bollan, Jacob Leopold (Ottawa Hills, Ohio / Ottawa Hills) and Gregory Littlejohn (LaPorte, Ind. / LaPorte) combined on a time of 3:24.96.

Bollan set a new program mark in the 60-meter hurdles, breaking his own school record with a time of 8.38 seconds. He placed third overall. Bollan added a seventh-place finish in the high jump.

Bassett added a third-place finish in the 400-meter dash. He ran a personal career indoor-best 49.63. Littlejohn finished seventh.

Leopold and Nick Zak (Saint John, Ind. / Hanover Central) added points in the 800-meter run, placing third and fourth respectively. Each ran season-best times, Leopold in 1:56.77 and Zak in 1:57.52.

Trine's Distance Medley Relay team notched a third-place finish to lead the team in distance events. Paul Baker (Columbus, Ind. / Columbus East), Adrien Howard (Marion, Ind. / Marion), Leopold and Jordan Zamarron (Ionia, Mich. / Ionia) combined on the time of 10:54.64.

Schaaf added to the success in distance events with a school record in the 5,000-meter run. Schaaf beat his own record set two weeks ago with a time of 15:27.28. Schaaf placed seventh in the event.

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Trine performers will compete in last-chance meets next week to try to solidify bids to the NCAA Division III Indoor Track and Field National Championships in Naperville, Ill.