Salukis take on top placers, record personal bests

By Akeem Glaspie

Athletes on the SIU track and field team set multiple personal bests during the Rod McCravy Invitational Friday and Saturday at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, Ky.

The SIU men competed against NCAA Top 25 teams such as No. 11 Ohio State University and No. 21 University of Mississippi. The Saluki women’s team, ranked No. 15 in the NCAA, competed against No. 6 University of Central Florida and No. 14 Ohio State, according the United States Track and Field Cross Country Coaches Association website.

Reigning Missouri Valley Conference scholar-athlete and field athlete of the week Malaikah Love started the Friday meet with a win in the triple jump. Love had a leap of 41-00.25. SIU senior Nina Okafor placed 14th in the event with a distance of 36-04.75.



Freshman Amiris Warren recorded a personal best in the 200-meter dash with a time of 24.74, which placed her fifth all-time in SIU history.

Senior Dan Dunbar set a personal best in the 3000-meter run with a time of 8:18.46 and finished seventh of 45 runners. In the 60-meter hurdles sophomore Matthew Benes set a personal best of 8.15 to place seventh.

The final personal best set during the meet was by junior thrower Kim Fortney. Fortney set a new career-best mark of 51-00.75 in the shot put and the throw placed Fortney fourth in the meet and fifth in SIU history behind leader senior Jeneva McCall.

McCall and senior James “J.C.” Lambert swept both the weight and shot put events during the meet. McCall threw 70-05.25 in the weight and 56.09.5 in the shot put. Lambert threw 69-09.5 in the weight throw and 57-01 in the shot put. Brian Cooper placed sixth with a throw of 52-02.50 and Brad Foote placed ninth with a throw of 49-06.25.