WINSTON-SALEM, NC – The University at Buffalo track teams opened up their 2014 outdoor season on Friday afternoon at the Wake Forest Open. The Bulls had a combined six athletes win individual titles on the first day of competition.
Leading the way for the Bulls once again was their throwers as Jonathan Jones continued his domination in the shot put, finishing first with a throw of 61-07.50 (18.78m). Evan Palmer also continued his stellar senior season with a first place finish in the hammer throw with a toss of 199-03.00 (60.73m). On the women's side, Rachel Roberts collected her first victory of the outdoor season in the shot put with a throw of 49-07.75 (15.13m). Sophomore Megan Patterson put in a strong showing in the hammer throw with an effort of 160-11.00 (49.05m) which was good for seventh place in the event.
Other field athletes earning top five finishes were Adam Hume and Jacob Sunday. Hume was impressive in the pole vault with a third place finish after clearing 15-05.00 (4.70m) while Sunday earned a fourth place finish in the javelin throw with a toss of 220-10.00 (67.31m).
On the men's distance side, Tyler Scheving continued to lead the Bulls with a fourth place finish in the 1500 meter run with a time of 3:49.16, setting a new school record in the process. Scheving broke the old school record that has stood since 1985.
On the track, a pair of Bulls earned the top two spots in the men's 110 meter hurdles. After qualifying first in the preliminaries, Ryan Billian backed that up with a first place finish in the finals after a season-best time of 14.16 seconds. Jake Wray qualified fourth and finished second in the finals for the Bulls in 15.53 seconds.
In the women's 100 meter hurdles, freshman Christine Lyttle earned a spot in the finals as she qualified in third place with a career-best time of 14.53 seconds. In the finals, Lyttle turned in a sixth place finish in 14.81 seconds.
Crystal Graham continued to impress on Friday in the 400 meter dash as she took home the title for the Bulls after finishing in 55.41 seconds. Also on the women's side, Melinda Wheeler took home first place in the 1500 meter run in 4:44.52 while Fabiola Oubida claimed third place in 4:47.68. The Bulls earned a pair of top seven finishes in the women's 3000 meter steeplechase as Chrissy Clarkin finished in 11:02.67 which was good for third place while Meagan Hopkins claimed seventh place in 11:30.19.
Miles Lewis opened up the sprints for the Bulls with a first place time of 10.52 seconds in the 100 meter dash preliminaries but in the finals he was only able to earn a second place finish despite improving on his time, finishing in 10.44 seconds. On the women's side, Malayah White was the only Bull to qualify for the finals of the 100 meter dash on the women's side, finishing the preliminaries in ninth place in 12.26 seconds. White was able to improve on her qualifying time and positioning, finishing in sixth place in the final in 12.11 seconds.
The UB track and field teams will return to the track tomorrow morning starting at 9:30 am with the women's javelin throw for day two action at the Wake Forest Open.