HOUSTON- Texas A&M’s opening weekend for indoor track and field action featured a victory by Evelyn Wing as well as a pair of third place efforts from Jennifer Davidson and Matt Ross during the Leonard Hilton Memorial on Friday.
Wing posted a win in the 800 as she ran 2:17.99 to win the first section and recorded the fastest time of three heats. She charged to the front of the pack during the first lap and remained there for the remainder of the race, staying ahead of Rice’s Claire Shorall (2:18.78). Wing’s time is sixth best on the Aggie all-time indoor list.
Reaching an indoor best of 11-11 ¾ (3.65) earned Davidson third place in the pole vault and also secured her as the third best performer on the A&M indoor list. She had been in a tie for the No. 3 position with two others with a previous best of 11-7 ¾ (3.55).
After clearing 11-11 ¾ on the third attempt, Davidson missed on three tries at 12-5 ½ (3.80), which is her outdoor personal best in the event. Newcomer Laura Asimakis tied for fifth place, clearing 10-11 ¾ (3.35).
Running in section one of the mile were five Aggies, led by Matt Ross in third place and Kevin McNab placing fourth. They both challenged for the lead during the final couple of laps until Lamar’s Francis Kasagule (4:10.57) and Shadrack Songok (4:11.56) of Texas A&M-Corpus Christi pulled away in the final stages.
Ross crossed the finish line in 4:13.60 while McNab claimed a 4:13.99, leaving both on the cusp of cracking the A&M all-time top 10 list. Leading the next trio of Aggies was Graham Northcutt, placing eighth in 4:24.63, while Wes Caceras finished ninth in 4:25.44. Dusty Langwell, who ran 4:26.05, ended up 12th overall.
Later in the meet Ross anchored an Aggie 4 x 400 to fourth place. Brandon Machacek (49.2), Kyle Dykhuizen (50.2) and Cade Liverman (49.8) had Texas A&M leading through the first three legs of the heat one race. Ross put in a solid effort on the anchor leg (53.7) as the squad recorded a time of 3:22.89 to place fourth overall.
Ben Schulz finished seventh in the 5,000 meters, running 15:32.38. In the women’s 5k Elizabeth Slaughter also placed seventh with an 18:28.25 while Kirsten Brown was 10th (18:52.81).
Chad Stoermer and Brett Bennett tied for ninth in the pole vault as each cleared 15-7 (4.75). Brandon Letsinger cleared 6-4 ¼ (1.94) to tie for 12th in the high jump.
Sarah Pierson placed 10th (5-2 ¼) in the high jump while Michael Marek finished fifth in his section of the 800 and was 12th overall with a clocking of 2:00.31.
In the women’s mile twin sisters Kathryn and Frances Hearn both contested the second of three heats. Kathryn led her sister early on in the race, but Frances closed strong to take fifth place (5:23.11) while Kathryn finished sixth (5:24.22). They were 13th and 15th overall.
Next weekend will find the Aggies in a full squad mode as they compete in the Arkansas Invitational, hosted by the University of Arkansas on Jan. 25-26.