McInerney, Knapp shine at Gibson Invite

Mark Shanahan, Staff Reporter

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The Eastern track and field teams had a solid performance with a pair of individual first-place finishes at the Indiana State Gibson Invitational over the weekend.

There were also four athletes who posted Eastern career top ten marks. Junior Riley McInerney won the men’s steeplechase with a time of 8:58 seconds. That time ranks him fourth on the Eastern career list.

McInerney’s main focus this year has been on the steeplechase.

“I started working on the steeplechase my freshman year when I redshirted, and I did it last year, and this year the steeple has been my main focus,” he said.

The key to McInerney’s success has been staying relaxed when heading into the race.

“I felt pretty calm,” he said. “I’ve run my best this season when I head into a race staying relaxed and knowing that there is plenty of time for the race to develop. I knew I was one of the best in that field, so I just stayed calm and trusted my fitness.”

Sophomore Haleigh Knapp continued her success in the women’s high jump this season with a height of 5’7.25”. This is her second first place finish in the three meets that she has competed in thus far. Sophomore teammate Jackie Jones finished fifth in the event.

Sisters Rachel Garippo and Ruth Garippo both achieved Eastern top five times in the women’s steeplechase as they placed second and fourth. Rachel Garippo finished in second place with a time of 10:46.15 seconds, which is third all-time. Ruth Garippo was fourth with a time of 10:53.33 seconds, which is fourth best in school history.

Senior Amy Yeoman also got into the school record books with her time of 2:11.87 seconds in the women’s 800-meter run. She finished second in the race and her time is 10th on the Eastern career list. Senior Dhiaa Dean was fourth in the same race with a time of 2:12.31 seconds.

Senior Mark Pedziwiatr was second in the men’s 800-meter run with a time of 1:53.67 seconds. Senior Eric Gordon had a pair of top five finishes for Eastern on Saturday. He was third in the pole vault with a height of 15’6.25”. He finished fifth in the 400-meter hurdles with his time of 56.26 seconds.

Junior Jamal Robinson and senior Christian Ilunga-Matthiesen took second and third in the men’s 100-meter dash. Robinson had a time of 10.83 seconds and Ilunga-Matthiesen followed up with a time of 10.85 seconds.

Redshirt freshman Brion Portis was second in the women’s triple jump covering 38’8.25”. Freshman Davion Foster finished fourth in the men’s triple jump with a mark of 43’10.50”.

Senior Janie Howse and junior Bryn Buckwalter were fourth and fifth in the discus for the women. Howse was fourth with a throw of 143’7” and Buckwalter was fifth with a throw of 142’5”.

The women’s 4×400-meter relay team took fourth with a time of 3:50.74 seconds. Both of the teams took fourth in the team standings.

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