Track & Field athletes jump into College’s record book


Deanna Lassiter

Junior jumper Jeremiah Hedrick lands after attempting the triple jump at the Dr. Jack Toms Invitational at the University of Lynchburg. //Deanna Lassiter/Guilford Athletics

The Guilford College Track & Field teams have been putting themselves in the record book throughout this season.

The team had a solid indoor season and has been continuing their success in the outdoor season.

Director of Track & Field/Cross Country Operations Marty Owens has seen the tea improve weekly throughout the season.

“It has gone very well, we’re coming off a solid indoor season, each week from Indoor through to the outdoor season we have seen improvements in all our athletes every week and that’s something you want.”

In a change from the last season, the team is competing at more mostly-Division III meets and less meets with Division I opponents.

“You’re looking to get the most out of each meet in terms of their opportunities to compete and the mostly Division III meets are more suited for our team right now,” said Owens. “Talking to the athletes you can see where they’ve even talked they seem to have a higher level of confidence when you go to a meet at (the University of) Lynchburg or Washington & Lee (University) versus traveling to Charleston Southern (University) or (University of )South Carolina, and we go in and they seem a bit overwhelmed.”

There have been a lot of advantages for the team at the Division III meets and the jumpers have taken the opportunity to make many finals and get more jumps.

“Because they’re going to meets where they have opportunities to make finals, they’re getting more opportunities to actually jump at a competition and that has been very big for them,” said Owens. “Instead of going to a meet and maybe get their three jumps or maybe one of them makes the final, were going to meets where three to four of them are making the finals or at least two are going to make finals, instead of three jumps they’re getting six jumps per competition which then will have them better prepared for the ODAC Championships.”

With the extra opportunities, many individuals have gotten marks in the top-10 in school history.

The season started with first-year Ranicha Sargeant setting a new record in the 60-meter dash with a time of 8.49 at the JDL Early Bird Duals on Dec. 2, 2018. She tied her record at the Finn Pincus Invitational on Jan. 26.

Sargeant holds three of the top-five times in school history in the indoor 60-meter dash.

At the ODAC Indoor Championships, sophomore Jamie Britt set the long jump school record with a leap of 4.71, besting the 4.66 mark that Sargeant had at the Finn Pincus Invitational.

Marian Cooper leads the long distance runners and holds the sixth-best 3000-meter and third-best 5000-meter times in school history. 

Since the outdoor season has begun, the women have closed in on some records. The quad of Sophomore Zarea Putts, Sophomore Carmen Curtis, Britt and Sargeant ran a 52.25 at the Dr. Jack Toms Invitational to sit second in Guilford history in the 4×100-meter relay.

The Quakers’ first-year Alexis Waddell had the second-longest discus throw in school history with a 30.23 meter toss at The Adidas Trojan Challenge.

Senior Shannon Petsch had a 26.57-meter javelin toss, which sits in fourth in school history.

The program has 16 student-athletes on each team have been working hard to build up the program.

This year, Guilford have four of the top outdoor long jump times in school history. Britt holds first and fourth place, Pitts sits in 6th and Sargeant is in eighth. Britt’s top mark of 4.94 meters at the W&L Carnival is .25 meters longer than second place.

The men’s team has seen some impressive individual performances.

Junior Juwan Houston had the sixth-best time in the 60-meter hurdles at the ODAC Indoor Championship. Houston holds the top eight marks in school history, setting the best mark of 8.51 at the ODAC Indoor championship on Feb. 25, 2018.

Junior Jeremiah Hedrick had a leap of 13.16 meters in the long jump at the Last Minute Invitational to rank second in school history.

In the outdoor season, Houston set the fourth-best mark in 110-meter High Hurdles with a time of 16.03 at the Dr. Jack Toms Invitational.

Houston, Hedrick, Tre Alexander and Asa Bell ran the sixth-best time in school history in the 4×100 at the W&L Carnival.

Alexander also set the third best leap with a 7.76 meter long jump at the W&L Carnival.

“(For the W&L carnival) the throwers and jumpers had to travel on Friday and compete. It was a tough line up of jumpers and the Guilford jumpers kept their cool and worked as a team, listened to my coaching cue’s and we left the day with many PR and school records,” said Assistant Track &Field Coach Marla Lindsay. “So it was only natural when Saturday came that’s when the whole team assembled, it became a day of hard work paying off.”

The team is focusing on improving their mark from last year at the ODAC Outdoor Championship after both teams finished in ninth place and the men picked up 10 points and the women’s team had zero points

The teams will compete at the Phoenix Invitational at Elon University  on April 6 and the Wildcat Invitation at Randolph College on April 12-13 before the ODAC Outdoor Championship on April 19-20.