Track And Field Sets 17 Personal Records

Patrick Gustavson, Sports Editor

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After last week’s meet at the Joe Donahue Games, Central Connecticut track and field head coach Eric Blake said the goal moving forward was improving on times and marks. And his teams did just that at the John Thomas Invitational, securing 17 personal bests on both sides

While the women had seven PRs, the star of the meet on Friday was senior Sierra Nesmith, who broke her personal-best time in the 200-meter dash with a time of 24.98, finishing sixth out of 157 competing runners. Not only was this a personal record, but it was also a school record.

Nesmith also competed in the 400-meter run, and while she did not achieve a new personal-best, she finished 16th out of the 113 runner field.

Nesmith is a part of a veteran core on the women’s side that Blake said would be instrumental to the team’s success, which also includes runners Dawn Hubbell, Megan Brawner and McKenna Killian, who all competed on Friday.

Freshman Samantha Vasquez set two personal-records on the meet in both the 200 and 400-meter dashes. Junior Taylor Davis also recorded a new best time in the 60-meter dash, finishing 10th out of 38 competing runners.

Also, on the track side, sophomore, Emily Appleton bested her previous record by nearly five seconds in the 800-meter run.

As for Central’s women throwers, Danyelle Engels set personal bests for the second straight meet, this time in the shot put.

On the men’s side, they topped their teammates by securing 10 new personal bests.

The 500-meter dash was where three Blue Devils across all classes break personal bests, those being freshman Jason Walton, senior Matt Baum and junior Andrew D’Ovidio.

Andrew Findley and Tim McNamara achieved PRs in the 800-meter dash. Though not breaking his own best time, junior Richard Grudzwick continued to impress, securing a 12th place finish out of 140 competing runners.

On the field side, three throwers improved on their previous bests as Ed Radizon and Andrew McCarthy did so in both the shot put and weighted throw. Junior Nana Kissi also broke a PR in the shot put, finishing 12th of 35 throwers.

Tyrik Henry joined in the fun, leaping 13.41 in the triple jump, also a personal best.

Both teams will be back in action when they take on the New England Championships in Boston on Friday and Saturday, looking to continue to improve on their best times.