Bryan, Gardner Claim Wins on Saturday

  • By Samantha Strejeck
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  • April 15, 2017 09:27 PM
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MORGANTOWN, W.Va.  – Sophomores Danique Bryan and Madelin Gardner led the way as the West Virginia University track and field team closed out the Bison Outdoor Classic with a pair of wins on Saturday, in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania.
West Virginia dominated in field events as Bryan and Gardner recorded victories in their respective events while inking their names in WVU’s top-five all-time list. With Bryan’s win today in the women’s long jump, the Mountaineers swept all three jumping events this weekend – the high jump, triple jump and the long jump. Gardner added to WVU’s success in the field events, as she won the women’s pole vault, helping West Virginia collect a total of four wins this weekend.
“All in all, the weekend was very encouraging for the team,” said coach Sean Cleary. “Our jumpers and vaulters had an exceptional weekend. Danique was outstanding today in the long jump, jumping a lifetime best and taking home the win. Not only did she jump a huge personal best, but she followed that jump up with her best series of jumps ever. Not to be out done, Shamoya (McNeil) also jumped into territory she had never experienced before. For the first time in her career she jumped over 13 meters to join a very exclusive club. Maddie in the final event of the meet vaulted 4.00 meters for the first time in her career. The consistency that Maddie showed today will be very valuable as the championship season nears. Marsi (Marseille McBeam) is also finding her form as the season progresses, as she joins Maddie, Shamoya and Danique in the winner’s circle.
“Other strong performances include freshman eligible distance runners. Candace (Jones) took 12 seconds off her personal best time in the 1,500, while running a very competitive 4:27, and Olivia Hill took 13 seconds off her best 5k mark to run 16:53. We still have some work to do to bring a few of our distance runners up to a performance level where we know they can be. Fortunately we have time to do so. This was a good meet for this team, a meet we expect to grow from.”
A native of Clarendon, Jamaica, Bryan won the long jump with a career-best mark of 6.28 meters to earn the fourth-best mark in WVU outdoor history. She gained .27 meters from her previous-best at the 49er Classic this season. Bryan bested former Mountaineer Meghan Mock’s 6.17 meters in 2011 to sit at No. 4 on WVU’s all-time list. She is just .01 meters away from tying WVU’s third best long jump mark that Christine Brown set in 2002 (6.29m).
In the women’s pole vault, Gardner posted a career-best mark of 4.00 meters in the win, moving to second on WVU’s all-time top-five list in the event. She improved .09 meters from her previous best, set last year. Gardner remains tied with WVU alum Erin Nett’s 4.00-meter mark set in 2002.
Other Mountaineer finishers in the pole vault were freshman Amanda Barnes, who placed 11th with a career-best clearance of 3.70 meter and an improvement of .20 meters. Freshman Greer Gumbrecht finished 12th, clearing 3.55 meters, followed by teammate junior Rebekah Lafata in 13th with a mark of 3.55 meters.
Redshirt freshman Anna French placed seventh in the women’s 3,000-meter run with a time of 10:21.90. Junior Brynn Harshbarger finished 12th in a season-best time of 10:36.17, improving by 4.56 seconds from the 49er Classic.
In the women’s 800-meter run, redshirt freshman Candace Jones finished seventh with a time of 2:11.78. Junior Rebecca Wendt placed 74th with a season-best time of 2:21.00, shedding 0.56 seconds off her time set at the George Mason Spring Invite.
Sophomore Chaqieta Robinson took eighth in the women’s 400-meter hurdles with a time of 1:03.38, matching her career-best time earned at the George Mason Spring Invite. Junior Meghan Jean-Baptiste placed 16th in the women’s 100-meter hurdles with a season-best time of 15.12. She shed 0.24 seconds off of her time set at the George Mason Spring Invite.
Jean-Baptiste’s also competed in the 200-meter dash, finishing 34th with another season-best time of 26.35, improving by 0.10 seconds. In the 100-meter dash, Bryan crossed the finish line in 24th with a time of 12.71, her second event of the day.
Robinson, also competed in her second event of the day in the 100-meter dash, as she placed 39th in 12.99.
On Friday, senior Marseille McBeam and junior Shamoya McNeil collected wins in field events to set the tone for the Mountaineers in the first day of competition.
In the women’s triple jump, McNeil leapt an impressive 13.01 meters, for an outdoor career-best mark and the second best in WVU history. McNeil improved .21 meters from her previous best set at this year’s Raleigh Relays. Her 13.01-meter mark is the second best in school history, just 0.18 meters from reaching former Mountaineer Stormy Nesbit’s 13.19 set in 2014.
WVU’s second win came from McBeam in the women’s high jump. She cleared a season-best mark of 1.70 meters, improving .05 meters from her then-best mark at the George Mason Spring Invitational.
Out of 20 women’s teams, Bucknell won the event with a team score of 71 points. Other top-five team finishers include, Duquesne in second (70.33), Buffalo in third (67), Penn State in fourth (63) and West Virginia in fifth (55).
The Mountaineers travel to a pair of meets on April 21-22, as select members will travel to Charlottesville, Virginia, to compete at the Virginia Challenge while others head to the Jesse Owens Invite in Columbus, Ohio.
For more information on the Mountaineers, visit WVUsports.com and follow the team on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.