LANCASTER, Pa. – The Ursinus College men's track and field team enjoyed a gold rush on the first day of the Centennial Conference championships at Franklin & Marshall, grabbing a pair of gold medals to script a solid opening performance.
The Bears collected 25 points on Saturday to sit fifth in the team standings, just 10 points out of second.
Freshman Nick Galbraith made history as the first champion of the inaugural weight throw competition at the indoor meet, uncorking a heave of 45-5.25 to outdistance Dickinson's Francisco Villareal by almost one-and-a-half feet. The rookie's toss was easily good for a new program record and got the Bears off to a dream start, which was helped along by sophomore George Psaradakis tacking on a pair of points with a seventh-place mark (34-4.75).
Freshman Octavious Carter, freshman Tyler Reilly, junior Austin Bittenbender, and freshman Bradley Duncan-Taylor gave the Bears another signature result with a gold medal in the 4x200-meter relay, becoming the first Ursinus quartet to win the event since 2009 by posting a time of 1:33.00 and holding off stiff challenges from McDaniel and Dickinson. The group's clocking was two-thirds of a second short of the indoor program record set in 2007.
Junior James McDaid, freshman Brandon Slaboda, junior Andre Kelly, and freshman Marcos Maciel finished sixth in the distance medley relay with a clocking of 10:33.16, only about six seconds off a school record that has stood untested since 1987.
A pair of Ursinus sprinters qualified for Sunday's final. Freshman Octavious Carter was fourth in the 60-meter dash prelims with a time of 7.12 seconds, while sophomore Zack Beavers grabbed the eighth and final spot in the 60-meter hurdles (9.50).
Junior Brody Johnson ended the first day of competition in sixth place in the heptathlon. He was third in the 60-meter dash with a personal-best 7.63 while ranking fifth in the long jump (5.32 meters), sixth in the high jump (1.52 meters) and seventh in the shot put (8.11 meters). Johnson nabbed personal records in both the high jump and shot put in addition to the 60-meter dash.