Panthers win 18th OVC track and field outdoor championship

Adam Tumino, Sports Writer

The OVC Men’s Outdoor Track Championship was once again won by Eastern men’s track team, making it back-to-back championships for the Panthers, this time as the event’s host.

They also won in 2019. The 2020 outdoor season was canceled due to COVID-19.

The women’s team placed fourth, trailing Murray State, runner-up Belmont and conference champions Southeast Missouri.

Both teams combined received 18 total medals, six of which were gold.

Redshirt-freshman Adam Swanson capped his strong season with a gold in the 800-meter run with a time of 1:51.75 while placing second in the 1,500-meter run.

Following the event, Swanson was named the OVC Male Track Athlete of the Year and Male Freshman of the Year.

He was not the only person to win conference honors from the OVC, with Eastern Director of Track and Field Brenton Emmanuel was named the OVC men’s Track Coach of the Year.

Senior Makenna Wilson was named OVC Female Athlete of the Championship after winning gold in the women’s shot put with a throw of 50’ 3.25”, the second-best mark in Eastern history.

In addition to Wilson and Swanson, junior Riley Baker win gold medals in the men’s 400-meter hurdles and junior Jekeel Suber in the 110-meter hurdles, the second-straight OVC title in that event for Suber. He also took second in the 400-meter hurdles behind Baker.

Two more gold medals were won by the men’s relay teams.

The 4×100 relay team won with a time of 40.97 and the 4×400 relay team winning gold with a time of 3:14.66.

Sophomores Akiya Kollore and Shanisa Stinson finished second and third in the women’s 100-meter hurdles.

Grad student Joe Smith and Redshirt-senior Nick Phillips each earned bronze medals, Smith coming third in the men’s triple jump and Phillips finishing third in men’s shot put.

Freshman Brailyn Johnson took silver in the men’s 100-meter dash and senior Tadiwa Mhonde took bronze in the men’s 400-meter dash while sophomore Ricky Johnson and junior Payton Powell finished second and third in the men’s 200-meter dash respectively.

Senior Kate Bushue won the bronze medal in the women’s 5,000-meter run with a time of 17:23.34.

The NCAA West Regional is set to take place May 27-29 and is being hosted by Texas A&M.