SIU track and field team splits duty, earns wins at separate invitationals


By Brent Meske, @brentmeskeDE

The Saluki track and field team competed in two separate invitationals this weekend and came away with nine event wins and 28 top-five finishes.

Most of the team attended the Hoosier Hills Invitational on Friday in Bloomington, Ind., while 12 athletes went to the Samford Invitational on Friday and Saturday in Birmingham, Ala.

SIU left Indiana with six event wins, 18 top-five finishes and 19 personal bests, highlighted by senior thrower Alexus Scott, who won the shot put with a throw of 16.43 meters. Her throw won the event and improved her personal record, moving her to fifth all-time at SIU.


The Dawgs added five more event wins on the track including junior Ashanna Hodge, sophomore Mystique Thompson, junior Chrissa Harris, freshman Alexandra Martel and sophomore Lucas Horton.

Hodge won the 400-meter dash, her first collegiate event win, with a personal record of 57.15 seconds.

Thompson won the 60-meter dash with a time of 7.56 seconds. Her third win of the season was .01 seconds away from her personal best.

Harris, a Carbondale native, won her second-straight fast 400-meter dash with a personal best of 49.98 seconds.

Martel won her first career event in the mile event, with a four second improvement on her personal record, at a time of 5:02.00.

Horton won the Salukis final event of the meet with a personal-best of 1:20.64 in the 600-meter run.

At the Samford Invitational, 460 miles south on I-65, seniors Josh Freeman and Bradley Sauer, junior Kyle Landon and sophomore Chad Weaver won their events. The Salukis finished the event with 10 top-five finishes in 17 entries.


The 12 athletes at the Samford Invitational got to compete at the same place as the NCAA Indoor National Championships beginning March 11.

Freeman and Sauer won the shot put and weight throw, respectively, for the third time in six meets this season.

Freeman’s 19.31-meter throw won his fifth event in six meets, and Sauer’s 20.98-meter effort won his third-straight weight throw event. Their personal bests are ranked seventh and sixth in the nation, respectively.

Landon won his fourth high jump event in as many tries this season with a height of 2.21 meters.

Weaver won his fifth career event and his first of the season with a pole vault height of 5.00 meters. His teammates, junior Nathan Schuck and sophomore Chase Black, rounded out the top-three.

The Salukis next event is the Missouri Valley Conference Indoor Championships beginning Feb. 27 in Cedar Falls, Iowa.

Brent Meske can be reached at [email protected] or at 536-3333