Panthers have three first place finishes in track and field

Mark Shanahan, Staff Reporter

The men and women’s track and field teams opened up the outdoor season with three first place finishes at the SIU Bill Cornell Classic.

While they had three first-place finishes, the Panthers also had four athletes that posted Eastern career top 10 marks. Sophomore Haleigh Knapp was one of the first place finishers in the women’s high jump. She cleared 5’8” and is now fifth on the Eastern career list.

Juniors Riley McInerney and Jamal Robinson were the other two first place finishers for Eastern. McInerney was first in the men’s steeplechase with a time of 9:07.66. Robinson was first in the men’s 100-meter dash with a time of 10.60 seconds.

Junior Anita Saffa had two second-place finishes for the women with both of her times ranking in the Eastern career top ten. She was second in the 100-meter dash with a time of 12.00 seconds. Her other second place time was in the 200-meter dash with a time of 24.51 seconds. Both times put her at eighth all-time on the Eastern career list.

Saffa was also apart of the 4×100-meter relay team that placed second. Saffa was the opening leg of the relay followed by senior Briana Walker, sophomore Darneisha Spann and senior Angelica Anyaogu.

Redshirt freshman Brion Portis, senior Dhiaa Dean and senior Amina Jackson each had second place finishes for the women. Portis’ mark of 37’8.75” in the triple jump now puts her at tenth on the Eastern career list. Dean finished second in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:13.81. Jackson was second in the 400-meter hurdles with her time of 1:01.77.

For the men, they had four individuals with second place finishes. Senior Eric Gordon took second in the pole vault as he cleared 15’9.25.” Sophomore Chrisford Stevens finished second in the triple jump with his leap of 45’9.” Senior Mark Pedziwiatr and freshman JaMarcus Townsend rounded out the second place finishers. Pedziwiatr ran in the 800-meter with a time of 1:55.16 seconds. Townsend competed in the 200-meter and finished with a time of 21.77 seconds.

Both of the relay teams finished in second place for the men on Saturday. The 4×100-meter relay team with sophomore Zach Booth, senior Calvin Edwards, Robinson and senior Christian Ilunga-Mathiesen had a time of 41.26 seconds. The 4×400-meter relay team finished with a time of 3:17.28. Freshman Michael Miller, sophomore Lars Ott, Townsend and Edwards ran for that relay team.

The Panthers will host the EIU Big Blue Classic next weekend at O’Brien Field.


Mark Shanahan can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]