Special to the E-T

Tarleton Sports Information

COMMERCE - The Tarleton men's and women's track and field teams opened its season at the Lions Quadrangular in Commerce on Saturday.  The men won 11 events while the women took top honors in 5 events.

"This was a really good opening meet for us," Tarleton head track and field coach Pat Ponder said.  "The weather was tough on us at times with winds gusting around 20-25 mph, but that's track."

Tarleton's Gerzain Valenzuela highlighted the men's 10,000 meter run, not only winning the event, but breaking the school record as well.  Valenzuela ran a 32:26.04 breaking Garrett Hick's mark of 32:49.01 set back in 2003.

Jamal Mays (10.86) and Austin Griffith (10.97) took first and second place in the men's 100 meter dash for the Texans.  The duo also finished first and second in the 200 meter dash as well.  Mays ran a 22.57 with Griffith behind him at 22.67.

Aaron Donohue took first place in the 400 meter dash with a time of 51.38.  Aaron Gooden followed in third place with a time of 52.71.

Bryan Ruiz took third place in the 800 meter run, finishing with a time of 2:08.22.  Ruiz crossed the finish line first in the 1500 meter run in 4:21.07.

The Texans took first and second place in the 5000 meter run as well with Jared McNeil crossing the line first with a time of 15:25.70.  Kolin Styles was behind him in second with a time of 15:30.41.

In the 110 meter hurdles, Garrett Thomas (14.95) and Brock Harris (15.82) both place first and second.  Thomas then took first in the 400 meters hurdles with a 57.64 and Jefferey Smith followed in second running a 59.61.

In the men's field events, Nolan Eubanks and Casey Keeter tied for second place in the shot-put with a throw of 47-06.00 each.  The Texans went 1-2-3 in the hammer throw.  Jacob Pratt took first with a throw of 128-10, Eubanks took second with a throw of 126-05, and Hayden Eubanks took third with a throw of 118-04.

Both Eubanks brothers took first and second in the discus throw.  Hayden was first with a throw of 145-10 while Nolan followed with a throw of 142-07.  Pratt followed in third with a throw of 128-07.

Aaron Schickedanz finished third in the high-jump with a vault of 6-02.00.

On the women's side, Sylvia Alexander won first place in the 100 meter dash with a time of 12.34.  She placed second behind Kandis Brooks in the 200 meter dash.  Brooks ran a 26.08 while Alexander ran a 26.48.  Brooks also took first in the 100 meter hurdles with a provisional time of 14.43.

The TexAnns finished 1-2-3 in the 400 meter dash.  Claire Goodman (1:02.04) took first, Jessica Ryan (1:02.74) took second and Courtney Newsom (1:03.77) took third.

Sheila Bishop (2:31.46) and Katherine Grillo (2:35.95) each placed second and third for the TexAnns in the the 800 meter run.

Kymberlee Trnka (5:20.82) and Emily Jones (5:27.98) both placed first and second in the 1500 meter run, then Morgan Kuykendall (20:52.32) and Vanessa Elizondo finished 1-2 in the 5000 meter run.

In the women's field events, Meredeth Persinger threw 40-09.00 in the shot-put to take first place while Hillary Moreno threw 39-09.00 for third place.  Persingler also placed first in the hammer throw with a throw of 118-00.  Moreno finished third in that event as well with a throw of 100-05.

Cassadi Porter took first place for the TexAnns in the high-jump with a vault of 5-02.00.  Laura Skinner finsihed in second with a vault of 5-00.00

"I was pround of the entire team and I was really proud of my freshmen," Ponder said.  "This was a very good learning experience for them and they now know that to compete at this level that you are going to have to give it your best effort.  It was great to see all of these athletes compete after training for so long."

Both teams will compete in the Tarleton Invitational on Thursday, Mar. 5.  Field events are scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. with running events set to begin at 1 p.m.