2017 NAIA Indoor National Championships ? Finals Recap (Day 3)
By Daniel Magnet, NAIA Media Coordinator
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (March 4, 2017) – (Complete Results) Indiana Tech won both the men’s and women’s team titles at the 2017 NAIA Indoor Track & Field National Championships as the event came to a close Saturday evening at David E. Walker Track at Gentry Field in Johnson City.
The day marked the fourth all-time title for Indiana Tech’s men, with all four coming in the last four years. Indiana Tech’s women, after settling for the runner-up spot in three of the last four seasons, were victorious for the first time in school history.
“We’re a well-rounded team,” Indiana Tech Head Coach Doug Edgar said about his men’s team. “We’ve got throws; we’ve got some middle distance; we’ve got sprinters; we’ve got jumps. I think the way we’ve built our team has allowed us to do that. We’ve got a lot of guys who have developed from where they were in high school, and they’re scoring some big points for us now as juniors and seniors.”
Indiana Tech’s men had the 60-meter national champ individually in Kajavon Moore (6.71), and the Warriors provided a fitting finish to the event by defending their 4x400 relay title in the last event of the championships. They scored 118 points which was second most all-time and only seven points off the record of 125 set by Wayland Baptist in 1986. It marked the 10th time in NAIA history that a men’s team reached 100 points at one championship.
With victories on both the men’s and women’s sides, Indiana Tech became the first team to sweep the competition since former member Oklahoma Baptist did it in 2013.
On the women’s side, Indiana Tech scored 75 points and had two individual national champions in Brianna Woods and Sarah Dunmore. Woods won the 200 meters with a time of 24.59 while Dunmore defended her title in the 60 meters with a time of 7.54.
“I think this team was more just about a combination than one,” Edgar said about his women’s team. “We didn’t win a lot of events and it was just a lot of force. We had a girl who had a seven-way tie for eighth place and got .14 points, but it just added up over the weekend and gave us a shot to win.”
While Indiana Tech’s women received their first team title in program history, several athletes earned their school’s first individual title in program history.
Tyanna Petty won the first individual national title for Rio Grande (Ohio) by winning the high jump with a leap of 1.77 meters. Jenny Moody did the same for St. Francis (Ill.) with a national title in the women’s 400 meter, covering the course in 55.72. Ellie Willging provided Saint Xavier its first national title with a victory in the 5000 meters with a time of 17:01.94.
Oklahoma City took the national runner-up in team standings on the women’s side with 59 points, despite entering the weekend without an individual national title in its history. Aminat Olowora, who was selected as the Women’s Most Valuable Performer, helped the Stars pick up four titles as she won the mile (4:48.01), the 3000 meters (9:46.78), and helped Oklahoma City in the 4x800 relay (Friday) and distance medley relay (11:51.57). Olowora provided one of the most exciting finishes by out-kicking nearly the entire field in the mile. Her four individual national titles matched Akela Jones of Oklahoma Baptist (60m hurdles, HJ, LJ, pentathlon in 2014) for the most individual national titles at one national championship.
On the other side of the coin, the final day of the national championships featured many repeat champions, including a three-peat champion and six others who successfully defended their 2016 title.
Zachary Lurz of Concordia (Neb.) was the three-peat champion, winning the shot put with a toss of 17.85 meters. Previously Lurz had won the event in 2016 with a throw of 17.57 meters and in 2015 with a throw of 17.86 meters.
On the list of back-to-back champions was Jackson Thomas of Bacone who won the mile in 4:12.38;
Taylor Killings of Marian who won the 60 meter hurdles with a time of 8.07; Geoffrey Kipchumba of William Carey who won the 5000 meters in 14:42.19 after winning the 3000 meters earlier Saturday afternoon; and Indiana Tech’s team of Xavier Williams, Kejavon Moore, Qadir Muhammad and Gairy Springer who defended their 4x400 relay title.
On the women’s side, Dunmore defended her title in the 60 meters while Hannah Segrave of Milligan (Tenn.) ran away with the 800 meters. Segrave had a comfortable lead the whole way and cruised to her second straight title in the event, finishing over six and a half seconds faster than the rest of the field.
Other exciting moments of the 2017 NAIA National Championships included the finish of the men’s 800 meters, which saw Presley Martin of Marian (Ind.) run a 1:52.14 and defeat Siena Heights’ Brent Rodden in a near photo-finish. Rodden ran a 1:52.41. Kipchumba, who earned Most Valuable Performance at last year’s championship, won the 3000 meters in 8:16.04 before turning around roughly one hour later to defend his title in the 5000 meters, over seven seconds ahead of the rest of the field.
Freshman Telecia Briscoe of Wayland Baptist was also a multi-event winner as she took home first-place hardware in the 60 meter hurdles (8.54) and long jump (Friday). Jahnoy Thompson of Southern-New Orleans was a two-time winner at the 2017 National Championships, taking the 400 meters in 48.06 and the 200 meters in 21.23.
The official list of All-Americans will be announced on Tuesday, March 7.
Women’s Outstanding Performer
Chelsea Baker – Friends (Kan.)
Men’s Outstanding Performer
Lucas Wiechman – Concordia (Neb.)
Women’s Most Valuable Performer
Aminat Olowora – Oklahoma City
Men’s Most Valuable Performer
Jahnoy Thompson – Southern-New Orleans
Women’s Coach of the Year
Doug Edgar – Indiana Tech
Men’s Coach of the Year
Doug Edgar – Indiana Tech
Records broken during the 2017 NAIA National Championships
• Natalia Alfonzo, Missouri Baptist – Women’s 3000 Meter Race Walk – 13:49.84 (Friday)
Individual/Relay teams to repeat as national champions – men’s history
• Anthony Peters, St. Ambrose – Men’s 3000 Meter Race Walk – 11:49.72 (Friday)
• Cody Boellstorff, Concordia (Neb.) – Men’s Weight Throw – 20.65m (Friday)
• Zachary Lurz, Concordia (Neb.) – Men’s Shot Put – 17.85m (Saturday)*
• Jackson Thomas, Bacone – Men’s Mile – 4:12.38 (Saturday)
• Taylor Killings, Marian – Men’s 60 Meter Hurdles – 8.07 (Saturday)
• Geoffrey Kipchumba, William Carey – Men’s 5000 Meters – 14:42.19 (Saturday)
• Xavier Williams, Kejavon Moore, Qadir Muhammad and Gairy Springer, Indiana Tech – 4x400 Relay – 3:13.14 (Saturday)
*- Lurz won the shot put for the third straight year
Individual/Relay teams to repeat as national champions – women’s history
• Sarah Dunmore, Indiana Tech – Women’s 60 Meters – 7.54 (Saturday)
• Hannah Segrave, Milligan – Women’s 800 Meters – 2:07.49 (Saturday)
Institutions to record first-ever national championship individual title – men’s history
• Thobias Nilsson Montler, Keiser (Fla.) – Men’s Long Jump – 7.61m (Friday)
Institutions to record first-ever national championship individual title – women’s history
• Chelsea Baker, Friends (Kan.) – Women’s Pentathlon – 3698 (Thursday)
• Danielle Wojciechowski, Bethel (Ind.) – Women’s Pole Vault – 3.82m (Friday)
• Sara Moore, Sheridan Hoyer, Stefani Nell and Aminat Olowora, Oklahoma City – Women’s 4x800 Relay – 9:11.95 (Friday)
• Tyanna Petty, Rio Grande – Women’s High Jump – 1.77m (Saturday)
• Jenna Moody, St. Francis (Ill.) – Women’s 400 Meters – 55.72 (Saturday)
• Ellie Willging, Saint Xavier – Women’s 5000 Meters – 17:01.94 (Saturday)