Baylor Track & Field Showcases Depth At Michael Johnson Invitational

Posted at 3:07 PM, Apr 23, 2017

Baylor track and field athletes produced 10 event titles Saturday at Clyde Hart Track & Field Stadium.

With overcast skies and windy conditions, Baylor’s contingent of 73 athletes also produced another six runner-up finishes on the day.

The highlight of the day was Leticia De Souza’s victory in the 400 meters. The junior Bear outraced Texas A&M freshman Jaevin Reed and 2017 NCAA Indoor 400-meter champion Shakima Wimbley of Miami to take the crown in 52.74. That time was a personal-best and the 14th-best in the NCAA this season.

Meanwhile on the men’s side, Wil London placed second with a time of 45.78.

The Bears swept the 200-meter titles as Kiana Horton produced a time of 23.62 and Maxwell Willis blazed to a personal-best mark of 20.36, which is currently ninth-best in the nation.

BU closed out the meet with their men’s and women’s 4x400-meter relays capturing titles. First, the women’s crew of Victoria Powell, Kiana Hawn, Kiana Horton and Leticia Desouza cruised to a win in 3:36.85. Next, the men’s quartet of Maxwell Willis, Wil London, Zak Curran and George Caddick used strong closing speed from all four legs to win in 3:04.98.

Battling the windy conditions, Annie Rhodes cleared her opening three bars in the pole vault on first attempts, before getting over 14-5.5 [4.41m] on her final attempt. The senior Bear almost cleared her next bar, which would have been a school record, but she was left to settle for her season-best clearance that is sixth-best in the nation.

In the 400-meter hurdles, junior Kiana Hawn pulled away from the field to win in 58.30, while senior Rhys Phillips set a personal best time of 13.79 to win the 110-meter hurdles.

For a fourth consecutive meet, Cion Hicks won the shot put event. The senior Bear recorded her best attempt on her fourth throw, notching a mark of 53-9.25 [16.39m].

Senior Matthew League cruised to a win in the 1,500 meters for the third-straight meet, using a personal-best time of 3:53.03. After opening up a large advantage early in the race, League held on late for the victory.

Maggie Montoya controlled much of the 1,500 meters, but was outraced at the line by Northern Illinois’ Hope Schmelzle to finish second in 4:21.51. Meanwhile in the 800 meters, Zak Curran couldn’t quite catch the leader in his race and took second in 1:48.60.

Megan SaxvanderWeyden led off the day with school record output in the javelin. The sophomore Bear opened her series of six throws by uncorking her best attempt of 152-3 [46.40m]. That mark proved to be the second-best mark on the day and was four inches better than the 1995 school record of Tammy Wilkerson (151-11).

Taylor Bennett established a new personal-best in the 100 meters racing to a runner-up finish in 11.25.

With a season-best leap of 43-7.75 [13.30m], Brianna Richardson took second in the triple jump. That mark is tied for ninth-best in the NCAA and just 1.5 inches off the senior’s personal best.

With a second-place showing, Jordan West (14:43.87) led a contingent of five Bears that all placed in the top-10 of the 5,000 meters.

• Baylor’s 19-member senior class was recognized prior to the start of the evening running session.
• Baylor honored two Baylor Legends during the day in Deon Minor and Tony Miller.

"We had a great crowd and it was a great night for the seniors. We have a great group and we are definitely going to miss them. I thought our athletes battled through the conditions and competed for the most part at a very high level.” - head coach Todd Harbour on the meet