Daily Egyptian

Throwing events highlight SIU’s performance at Vanderbilt Invitational

By Brent Meske, @brentmeskeDE

SIU track and field competed with teams from the Southeastern Conference, Atlantic Coast Conference and Big 10 Conference at the Vanderbilt Invitational on Friday and Saturday and came away with one event win.

The Salukis were led by senior throwers Brad Sauer and Alexus Scott in both the weight throw and shot put.

Sauer won the weight throw and finished fifth in the shot put. His throw of 22.06 meters in the weight throw moved him to No. 3 in the nation and No. 2 all-time at SIU. The nation’s top mark, set by Purdue senior Chukwuebuka Enekwechi, is 23.79 meters. Sauer was No. 14 entering competition with a mark of 21.09 meters.

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Sophomore Issac Ingram finished third in the weight with a throw of 19.74 meters.

While Sauer finished fifth in the shot with a throw of 15.92 meters, fellow senior Saluki Josh Freeman finished second with a throw of 19.40 meters. This is the first shot put event of the year Freeman has not won.

Stephen Mozia, who is throwing for Garden City Track Club — based in New Jersey, won the event with a throw of 21.11 meters. His throw broke the Vanderbilt Recreation and Wellness Center facility record of 21.03 meters, which he previously set on Jan. 16.

Scott finished fourth and sixth in the shot put and weight throw, respectively, behind strong performances from former Salukis.

Mississippi sophomore Raven Saunders won the shot put with a throw of 18.98 meters, which was a personal best and improved her collegiate lead to more than one meter.

Jeneva Stevens, a former Saluki now throwing for New York Athletic Club, followed Saunders with a throw of 18.51 meters and Jessica Ramsey, who previously threw at Western Kentucky but competed as an unattached athlete, finished third with an 18.28-meter throw.

All three throwers broke Saunders’ facility record of 16.95 meters set last season while she was at SIU.

Scott followed the record-breaking trio with a throw of 15.67 meters.

It was much of the same in the weight throw, as Scott finished sixth with a throw of 19.61 meters, and four athletes broke the previous facility record of 20.77 meters held by SIU senior DeAnna Price set last season.

Price was unable to defend her record — she is out of indoor eligibility, but will return to the Salukis for the outdoor season.

Gwen Berry, a former Saluki who is also throwing for NYAC, won the event with a throw of 24.02 meters. She was followed by Stevens and Ramsey, who threw 23.45 meters and 23.22 meters, respectively. North Carolina State senior Nicole Chavis also broke Price’s facility record with a throw of 21.91 meters.

Saunders finished fifth with a throw of 20.22 meters.

The Salukis return home to host the Don DeNoon Invitational beginning Friday at the SIU Recreation Center.

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

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