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APSU Track and Field has success at Saluki Fast Start


APSU Sports Information

APSU Women's Track and FieldCarbondale, Il – Bolstered by multiple top performances from the younger generation of Govs, Austin Peay State University enjoyed much success in its final pre-Christmas tune-up at the Saluki Fast Start, picking up a victory, and a number of reasons for optimism, heading into the new year.

Austin Peay Women's Indoor Track and Field junior Savannah Amato tops the leaderboard in the pole vault at Saluki Fast Start, Saturday. (APSU Sports Information)

Austin Peay Women’s Indoor Track and Field junior Savannah Amato tops the leaderboard in the pole vault at Saluki Fast Start, Saturday. (APSU Sports Information)

The Govs dominated the pole vault, earning three of the top four spots.

At her customary position atop the leaderboard was junior Savannah Amato, whose 3.66m (12-0.0) placed her just ahead of senior Gretchen Rosch (3.56m; 11-8.0). Freshman Morgan Bradley just missed giving the Govs the top three spots, finishing fourth at 3.36m (11-0.25).

Freshman Denia Hill-Tate just missed the top spot in the high jump, losing a jump-off to Southern Illinois’ Justin Paton at 1.62m (5-3.75).

Junior Nia Gibbs-Francis‘ 1.57m (5-1.75) earned her a share of third in the event. Hill-Tate later came back with a 9.16 60m hurdles mark to qualify third for the finals; she would finish fifth overall at 9.44, four-hundredths of a second behind sophomore Kaitlyn Black.

Another Gov who shined on the track and in the field was sophomore Diamond Battle. In the long jump, Battle placed fourth thanks to a 5.13m (16-10.0) leap, while her 7.73 in the 60m dash netted her third, less than three-tenths of a second ahead of fellow Austin Peay sophomore Garielle Netter.

“I thought Denia had one of the better performances today,” said head coach Doug Molnar. “Diamond was really good. Our pole vaulters are a mainstay and did their thing today. We had lots of people close to PR’s; doing that this early in the season is a sign of good things to come. Very pleased with where we are with this young team.”

Elsewhere on the track, sophomore Amelia Thiesing (58.98) and senior Sarah-Emily Woodward (6:28.99) finished third in the 400m and mile, respectively, while freshman Lennex Walker chipped in with a fourth-place showing in the 200m dash with 25.96 run and Keleah Shell added a 2:27.23 run in the 800m for fourth. Junior Emmaculate Kiplagat closed the day with 10:50.29 run for fourth in the 3000m event.

“Very pleased with our young Govs,” Molnar said. “Despite being so young, they continue to grow and that’s been exciting. We have some stuff to work on but they keep getting better and now we have to turn them loose and trust them to take care of business over break.”

Now attention turns to final exams and the holiday break. The Govs return to action January 6th, 2017 at Tennessee State’s Ed Temple Classic in Nashville.




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