GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. -- The Trine University men's indoor track and field team finished as runners up in the 2019 Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association Championships hosted by Calvin (Mich.) College.
The Thunder finished with a team score of 121 points to place second out of seven teams. Host school Calvin took the team title with 153 points and Adrian (Mich.) College was third at 105.5 points.
Highlighting the running events for Trine was senior Jasper Bassett (Auburn, Ind./DeKalb) who finished as an individual champion in the 400-meter dash with a time of 50.10 seconds.
Trine also had several top-10 finishes throughout the day that included a second-place showing by senior Nick Zak (Saint John, Ind./Hanover Central) in the one-mile run after clipping the tape in a time of 4:24.89. Teammate and sophomore, Neil O'Brien (Whiteland, Ind./Roncalli) also competed in the event and posted the sixth fastest time at 4:30.14.
Zak also went on to compete in the 800-meter run and turned in a mark of 1:59.37 to place in the top-five with the fourth quickest time.
In the 3000-meter run, Trine had a trio of competitors finish in the top-10, led by a second-place effort by senior Jonathan Phillips (Royal Center, Ind./Pioneer) in a time of 8:48.89. Sophomore Levi Neuzerling (Noblesville, Ind./Noblesville) placed three spots back of Phillips in fifth place after completing the race with a time of 8:54.15. Fellow sophomore Derek Miller (Shipshewana, Ind./Westview) rounded out the top finishers in eighth place after recording a mark of 8:59.42.
Also in the distance events, sophomore Jack Beakas (Auburn, Ind./DeKalb) and junior Vilis Vuskalns (Indianapolis, Ind./Beech Grove) both came in the top-10 in fourth and six place respectively after crossing the finish line with times of 15:44.28 and 15:56.73.
Senior Jeffery Barnett (Fremont, Ohio/Ross) had a big day both on the track and in the field events. His highest finish on the track came in the 200-meter dash where he was one of four runners to finish in the top-10 and led all Thunder athletes in the event with a time of 22.54 seconds which was good enough for third place overall. Joining him in the event were freshman Josh Davis (Sterling Heights, Mich./Sterling Heights), senior Eric Townsend (Greenwood, Ind./Roncalli) and junior Jacob Root (Vicksburg, Mich./Vicksburg). All three claimed eighth through 10th place and all finished within three one-hundreths of a second of each other. Davis had a time of 23.46 seconds to take eighth place, Townsend finished in ninth place at 23.47 seconds and Root was 10th after recording a mark of 23.49 seconds.
Barnett also competed in the 60-meter dash and was one-of-two Trine runners to qualify for the finals. Barnett recorded his fastest time in the preliminaries at 7.14 seconds and then followed with a mark of 7.22 seconds in the finals to finish seventh overall. Davis also competed in the 60m and qualified for the finals after running a preliminary time of 7.10 seconds. He then crossed the finish line in 7.13 seconds in the finals to place one spot ahead of Barnett in sixth place.
In the field events, Barnett became a three-time MIAA champion in the long jump following a winning leap of 24' 1.75" setting a MIAA indoor record. Townsend also posted a top-10 mark in the event of 21' 5.25" which was good enough for seventh place. Barnett also competed in the triple jump and went on to record a best attempt of 41' 3.75" to finish in eighth place overall.
Also coming in first in a field event was senior Ryan Haarer (Goshen, Ind./Northridge) in the pole vault. He cleared the bar in a winning height of 14' 3.25". Senior Jacob Payne (LaPorte, Ind./LaPorte) also recorded a top mark in the pole vault by placing second behind Haarer following a best effort of 13' 11.25".
In the weight throw, senior Nicholas Gerber (Goshen, Ind./Goshen) and sophomore Nicholas Kane (St. Charles, Ill./St. Charles East) placed third and sixth with Gerber posting a mark of 54' 7.50" and Kane a best distance of 46' 10.75".
Kane and Gerber also had the top marks for Trine in the shot put with Kane finishing third after a toss of 46' 11.50" and Gerber was sixth with a throw of 44' 10.25". In addition, junior Skyler Dunckley (Cedar, Mich./Traverse City West) competed in the event and placed in the top-10 with a 10th-place effort of 41' 1.00".
Trine is scheduled to compete in the Pointer Last Chance Meet hosted by the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point next Saturday, Mar. 2 in Stevens Point, Wis. The meet is scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m. EST.