Track, field post multiple first places at WKU


JJ Bullock

Eastern freshman Morgan Atchison runs the 400-meter hurdles at the EIU Big Blue Classic at O’Brien Field on March 30. Atchison finished in 12th place in a time of 1 minute 8.36 seconds.

Alex Hartman, Track and Field Reporter


Nearing midway in the outdoor track and field season, Eastern competed down at the Western Kentucky Relays over the weekend on Friday. 

Overall, the men and women of Eastern track and field competed well on the road in one day of competition. There were a combined 15 top five finishes and four first place finishes for Eastern athletes. 

There was some movement in the Eastern track and field record books, as senior jumper Chrisford Stevens earned first place in the men’s triple jump with a distance of 50’7.50”. That moved him into sixth place all-time for Eastern, and the longest jump in the triple jump for Eastern since 2007. The jump also moved into the top 25 in the NCAA, now being 24th. 

Another highlight was first year Eastern track and field competitor sophomore Drew Meyer-Hester, as he earned his first top finish of the season, as he will not he javelin throw with a mark of 173’11.0”.

Other top finishes for Eastern in the field events came from senior Haleigh Knapp, who won another high jump event, this time with a height of 5’7”. Then redshirt senior Brion Portis finished in first in the triple jump with a leap of 41’9.75”, as well as finishing fourth in the long jump with her mark of 18’6.50”. 

Eastern had a handful of other athletes that had multiple top five spot finishes in graduate student Ryan Pearce and junior Pedra Hicks. Pearce finished third in the men’s discus with a throw of 162’7.0” and fifth in the shot put with his toss of 53’5”. 

Meanwhile, Hicks finished in a close second in the 400 meter hurdles with a time of 1 minute 1.16 seconds and then fifth in the 100 meter hurdles with a time of 14:44.

Also in the 100-meter hurdles, senior Darneisha Spann finished second for Eastern with her time of 14.01.

To round out the great showing in the field events, freshman Makenna Wilson finished third in the women’s javelin throw with a distance of 120’10” and freshman Marie Koch earned fourth in the women’s discus with a throw of 136’4”.

The meet kept the momentum for Eastern going into midseason, coming off the EIU Big Blue Classic last weekend, where the men finished second and the women finished third. 

The track and field team’s next meet will take place Saturday, April 14 at the Illinois Twilight meet at the University of Illinois. 

Alex Hartman can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]