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Track & Field Impressive Once Again at GVSU Big Meet

Robert Atwater tied an indoor school record for the high jump with a height of 7'0.5"...
Robert Atwater tied an indoor school record for the high jump with a height of 7'0.5"...

ALLENDALE, Mich. - Following a strong Friday at the GVSU Big Meet, the SVSU track & field teams added another eight NCAA Division II Indoor provisional qualifying marks to round out competition on Saturday (Feb. 13) in Allendale.

The men had a trio of first place finishes in the long jump, high jump and 4 x 400 meter relay.

Robert Atwater crossed the bar at a height of 7'0.5" (2.15m) in the high jump to finish in the top spot. The jump is a personal best for Atwater and is now tied for the second best height in the nation, upping his mark from Friday's performance. The mark also matched the school record. He added a fourth place showing in the long jump with a distance of 7.00 meters (22'11.75").

Robert Tarpley placed first in the long jump with a mark of 24'0.25" (7.32m). It's just shy of his season and school record, which is 7.35 meters and ranks him eighth nationally. Tarpley added a second place showing in the triple jump with a distance of 14.22 meters (46'8").

The 4 x 400 meter relay team, consisting of Josh Simmons, Blake Oakes, Shawn Stewart and Andrew Mudd finished first as well, finishing with a time of 3:19.66.

D'Omar Boyden finished runner-up in the 60 meter hurdles with a provisional time of 8.27 seconds. His season-best time of 8.20 currently ranks him 26th in the nation.

Brady Watson and Sam Black finished third in the high jump with heights of 1.95 meters (6'4.75") and tied for third place. Watson added a fifth place showing in the triple jump at 13.65 meters (44'9.5"), a new personal best in the event. 

Devin Hartnagle had a strong fifth place finish in the weight throw, posting a distance of 16.87 meters (55'4.25").

Anna Fochesato finished in the top spot for the triple jump, notching a distance of 11.41 meters (37'5.25"). Her distance of 11.78 meters earlier this year ranks her 20th nationally.

Sidney Bischer had a third place showing in the high jump, leaping to a height of 1.66 meters (5'5.25") for a provisional mark. Her height of 1.68 meters has her 20th in all of Division II as well. 

DeAnna Stickler-Gatson continued her fine season, coming in at the third spot in the 800 meter run with a time of 2:14.54 for a provisional time. She currently sits 12th in the country with her earlier time of 2:13.01 in the race. 

Ce'Aira Richardson, a day after posting a provisional time and new record in the 4 x 400 meter relay Friday along with Stickler-Gatson, posted a provisional mark in the 400 meter run and a fifth place showing. Her time was 56.27 seconds and is her career-best. She is also ranked 20th nationally for that time she posted on Saturday. 

Emerald Joiner posted two provisional marks on Saturday, finishing sixth in the shot put with a distance of 13.49 meters (44'3.25") and eighth in the weight throw, totaling a distance of 16.43 meters (53'11") in that event. Her mark of 14.32 meters on Friday is 11th in the nation and she is 30th in the weight throw with a distance of 16.92 earlier this season.

Brittany Johnson added a third place finish in the 3,000 meter run with a time of 10:12.73 while Ola Hendler, Richardson, Fochesato and Domonique Smith ran the 4 x 400 meter relay and finished in fifth place with a time of 3:58.27.

The teams are back in action on February 27-28, as they will participate in the 2016 GLIAC Indoor Championships. This year's event will be hosted by Tiffin University.

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