By: Sean Neidig, sports information graduate assistant
COLUMBUS, Ohio – All of the work done by Capital University Men's Track & Field's athletes this outdoor season has led to this, the 2019 Ohio Athletic Conference Outdoor Track & Field Championships hosted by Otterbein University.
The two-day championships will begin Friday, April 26 with the men's pole vault at noon and then conclude on Saturday with the women's 4x400-meter race at approximately 6:05 p.m. Over the course of those two days between those events though athletes from each OAC school will battle for conference supremacy and an All-OAC spot by placing in the top three of each event.
Capital's best chances at winning an OAC title will come in the field events, led by sophomore thrower Josh Miller (Botkins, Ohio/Botkins). Miller has won the shot put three weeks in a row and has placed first in four of his five tries this outdoor season. On April 13 at the All-Ohio Outdoor Championships, Miller set a personal record with a throw of 16.38 meters (53-09) which is the top performance in the event by an OAC athlete this season. Miller's mark is 0.21 meters (0-08 ¼) better than the second-place mark by Sean Sherman of the University of Mount Union.
Miller is also eighth in the OAC in the hammer throw with a distance of 45.41 meters (149-00) and is 10th in the conference in the discus with a mark of 44.51 meters (146-00).
Freshman Spencer Smith's throw of 38.38 meters (125-11) in the discus and hammer toss of 38.10 meters (125-00) have him ranked 22nd and 20th in the conference, respectively, and both marks are good enough to enter Smith (Lancaster, Ohio) into the field.
Senior high jumper John Seman's best performance of the season came on March 30 at the Otterbein April Fools Invite when he cleared 1.92 meters (6-03 ½), a personal record. Seman (Ashland, Ohio/Hillsdale) has the fourth-best mark in the conference, only 0.02 meters behind the third-place jump.
Freshman Joseph Eskra (Huron, Ohio/Edison) is fifth in the OAC in the pole vault thanks to a performance that saw him clear 4.35 meters (14-03 ¼), also that the April Fools Invite. Eskra is only 0.01 meters out of third.
In the triple jump, sophomore Nate Hayes (Madison, N.C./Walter Hines Page) is 10th with a performance of 12.40 meters (40-08 ¼).
On the track, Noah Meeker (Powell, Ohio/Olentangy Liberty) turned in a 10th-place run of 11.13 seconds in the 100-meter dash at the April Fools Invite, meaning a good run could vault him into an All-OAC spot. The sophomore is also 18th in the conference in the 200-meter race with a mark of 22.75 seconds.
Junior distance runner Nathan Hutchins (Toledo, Ohio/Maumee) also qualified for the 10,000-meter race by turning in a run of 36:47.24 at the Pioneer Invitational.
Capital's 4x100-meter and 4x400-meter relay teams are both ranked ninth in the conference with season-best times of 44.42 seconds and 3:31.49, respectively, both achieved at the All-Ohio Championships. The 4x100-meter team will be comprised of Eskra, Meeker, Carter Moore (Lakeview, Ohio/Kalida) and Cole Williams with Corbin Brown (East Spart, Ohio/Sandy Valley) serving as the alternate. The 4x400-meter team will be made up of Brown, Meeker, Grant Ward (West Liberty, Ohio/Benjamin Logan) and Williams with Jonas Pyle (Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio/Woodridge) and Moore serving as the alternates.
For the first time this season, Capital will field a 4x800-meter team comprised of Ward, Pyle, Andrew Rus (Highland Heights, Ohio/Mayfield) and Maxwell Zawatsky with Brown waiting in the wings as the alternate.
Live results will be available throughout the championships and final results will be available after each day's events have concluded.