UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Junior Steve Thompson won the individual 800m and had a hand in the unseeded Distance Medley Relay title to lead the Saint Joseph's men's track and field squad at the Penn State National Open, held at PSU’s Ashenfelter III Indoor Track this past Friday through Saturday. In all, the Hawks won a pair of events and turned in two relay and seven individual IC4A-qualifying performances on the weekend.
On Friday evening, Saint Joseph’s claimed the unseeded Distance Medley Relay title as junior Dave Garton (3:05.1), senior Eddison Gulama (48.2), Thompson (1:54.3), and junior Collin Crilly (4:15.3) crossed the finish line in 10:03.49. The Hawks finished 4.12 seconds ahead of Pittsburgh to win the event in a field of nine and qualified for the IC4A Championships with SJU’s fastest time of the season.
Thompson additionally won the unseeded 800m run in an IC4A-qualifying 1:52.18, the fastest indoor 800m time of his collegiate career. Thompson defeated Akron’s Sean Poholski by over an entire second and also knocked off Penn State’s Brad Rivera for the victory. This marks his second 800m win of the season and third of his career.
A duo of middle distance Hawks took home a pair of strong IC4A-qualifying, runner-up performances. Garton flew to a new collegiate-best time in the 1000m in 2:28.37, good for second in the field of 17. Freshman Zach Michon won his heat as he crossed the finish line of just his second collegiate mile in 4:14.46, which checked in at second in the field of 17; Michon improved upon his season-debut mile time from the beginning of the month by over seven seconds.
Junior Dan Ferraiolo followed Thompson with a fourth-place finish in the 800m, crossing in an IC4A-qualifying, season-best time of 1:54.43.
A trio of Hawks qualified for the IC4A Championships in the 500m. In his first 500m race of the season, senior Torey Doaty crossed the finish line of the invitational section of the program in 1:04.86. Turning in his fastest 500m since February of last winter, junior Kenny Evely qualified with a time of 1:04.69, which placed fourth in the unseeded field of 14, while junior Barren McCoy also qualified in 1:04.81 for fifth.
Saint Joseph's also met the IC4A standard in the 4x400m relay as the of freshman Justin Moscoe (49.4), Evely (49.2), McCoy (49.0), and Doaty (47.9) crossed in a season-best time of 3:15.78, resulting in a fourth-place finish in the field of 10.
Senior Jimmy Daniels placed second in a field of 13 in the 5000m invitational section of the program on Friday evening. Daniels crossed the finish line in a time 14:52.20, just 1.38 seconds behind Maryland’s Louis Corgliano. The performance marked the first time Daniels has gone sub-15:00 for an indoor 5k in his collegiate career and stands as his third-fastest collegiate 5k, and fastest since April 2014. Daniels has improved upon his 5k all four years at the Penn State National Invitational, setting a time of 15:12 in 2014, improving to 15:08 in 2015 and 15:01 in 2016, and ending with a 14:52 this time around.
In addition to anchoring the championship unseeded DMR, Crilly placed fourth in the 1000m (2:28.74 PR). Senior Brandon Ossont (1:05.74) placed sixth, behind Evely and McCoy, in the 500m while classmate Dan Savage placed eighth in a field of 20 in the 3000m, clocking in with a collegiate-best time of 8:30.47, which destroyed his previous PR (8:33.53) that had stood since February 2014.
Saint Joseph's is back in action next Friday, February 3 through Saturday, February 4 at the Giegengack Invitational, set to begin at 5:00 p.m. on Friday at Yale's Coxe Cage in New Haven, Conn.