KALAMAZOO, Mich.- Jake Wickey got the opening day of the Central American Conference Men’s Outdoor Championships with his first hammer-throwing title of his career and Kent State finished Thursday in first place with 42 points.
A four-time weight-throwing champion at the conference indoor gathering, gold in the hammer throw has already passed from Wickey, who finished second in 2019 and third in 2021. The fifth-year pitcher comes on as MAC leader in the event and with momentum following new throws. personal best in each of his last two encounters. Thursday morning’s competition didn’t go as planned, and Wickey sat sixth going into the final following fouls on his second and third attempts. He increased his mark on the fourth and fifth throws to move into third place. On his last attempt, Wickey hit the winning streak 210′-11″.
Scott Benco and Bradley Heck finished second and third, respectively, to score 14 points in the javelin throw. The Golden Flashes held the top two spots going into the finals, but East Michigan’s Joe Duff recorded a PR of 14′ to win the title. Benco, who won the event a year ago, opened the competition with a 214′-6″ throw to take second place. Heck beat his previous personal best just two weeks ago on each of his first three attempts, and his record is 213′-5. ‘ ranks ninth all-time in Kent State history.
Luke Van Der Watt took second place in the pole vault with a height of 16′-4.75″. The bar was then raised to 17′-1.75″, but Van Der Watt was unable to clear it in three of his chances. Jacob Mally cleared 13′-5.25″ to take fifth.
Nick Stricklen also earned the All-MAC award, finishing second in the 10,000 meter run in 30:17.96.
Alexander Shields (3,871) and Jacob Mally (3,707) sit at the top of the decathlon standings, as both of them set a new Day 1 homework. Shields started the competition by winning the 100 meter run in 11.01 seconds and the long jump with a record of 23′-3.25″, an outdoor personal-best. She followed with a PR of 45′-3″ to take third place in the race. shot put and closed with runners-up efforts in the high jump (6′-3.5″) and the 400 meters (51.83).
Mally recorded a personal best time of 100m 11.24 and followed by a second-place attempt in the long jump (22′-2.25″). After taking fifth place in shooting (39′-3″), she won the high jump with an outdoor PR 6′-8.25″ for the day’s highest-scoring event. Mally finished third in the 400m in 52.62 and headed Friday 153 points ahead of third-place contenders.
In the only preliminary race of the day, Asa Hodrick and Jaheim Jones both finals of the advanced 200 meter run. Hodrick finished first with a season best of 21.12 and Jones’s time of 21.44 was outdoor PR.
The second day will continue at 11.00 with a 110-meter decathlon hurdles race. The field event starts with shots at 12:30 and the preliminary run starts at 15:10 with a 110 meter hurdles.
Standings Day 1
1. State of Kent – 42
2. East Michigan – 36
3. Akron – 33
4. Buffalo – 7
5. Miami – 6