Austin Peay Sports Information
Bowling Green, KY – Austin Peay State University track and field athletes picked up four individual wins at Saturday’s Hilltopper Relays, hosted by Western Kentucky.
For Austin Peay, Saturday was proof-positive that the program is on the right track as it heads into the final month before the Ohio Valley Conference outdoor championships, as several athletes set season-bests in their respective disciplines and look in line to peak at the opportune moment.“I think we had a very solid outing,” said head coach Doug Molnar. “Lots of great performances. We’re starting to build momentum and get this group where they need to be.”
Perhaps most impressive on the day was sophomore Kaylnn Pitts. The Woonsocket, RI native posted team season-bests in the triple jump (12.54m) and long jump (5.87m), winning the triple jump for a third straight time. Her long jump mark placed her fourth and also serves as her personal-best. Based on marks entering Saturday, Pitts’ triple jump would be among the top-20 in the NCAA East Region.
Two Austin Peay 800m runners were among the top finishers on Saturday. Senior Jessica Gray gutted out a win by less than three-tenths of a second, while sophomore Michaela McGhee finished sixth with a 2:22.09 run in her first outdoor 800m attempt as a Lady Gov.
Senior Natalie Olberding‘s season-best 1:01.78 400m hurdles attempt won her the event on Saturday. Based on marks entering Saturday, Olberding’s run would place her in the top-75 in the region and move her closer to conference-leading Kalya Pryor of Tennessee State.
“Lydia is rounding into shape,” Doug Molnar said. “Today was a pleasant surprise. And while Natalie was certainly the top performer among the 400 hurdles group, I thought we had a lot of girls run well in that event.”
In her first 5000m run attempt for Austin Peay, sophomore Lydia Saina won the event by more than 12 seconds, pacing the field with an 18:32.46 run. It’s also the best 5K by an Austin Peay athlete during the 2015 outdoor season by nearly a minute.
Elsewhere on the track, sophomore Terri Morris was solid in the 400m dash with a 57.67 run, placing fifth, while senior Erika Adams was sixth in the 100m event with a 12.02 run. In 100m hurdles action, sophomore Myiah Johnson‘s 14.10 mark was a season-best by an APSU athlete and netted her sixth-place honors.
Sophomore Autumn Schmelzer was another top performer among field athletes, finishing fifth in the javelin throw with a 34.91m toss.
“We had a solid effort all around,” Molnar said. “I was really quite pleased with the day. Hopefully we can do more of the same next week at the home meet.”
Austin Peay will be on its home track inside Governors Stadium next weekend for the APSU Invitational, with the two-day event opening 5:00pm, Friday, with the hammer throw and triple jump before resuming 10:00am, Saturday, with discus, shot put, long jump and high jump. All running events are scheduled for an 11:00am start.