Men's T&F Ascends to Third

Men's T&F Ascends to Third

ALLENTOWN, Pa. – Three gold medals and the best overall finish in more than a decade – the last day of the Centennial Conference outdoor championships was exceedingly kind to the Ursinus College men's track and field team.

Freshman Tyler Reilly racked up an incredible four medals – including golds in the 200-meter dash and one as a member of the 4x400-meter relay – to put himself in strong contention for Outstanding Rookie Performer honors, and fellow first-year Octavious Carter snagged two medals of his own as the Bears put their bright future on full display and soared to a third-place finish in one of their best conference championship efforts in years.

In taking third, Ursinus matched its best team finish at the outdoor championship since 2006, one year after a runner-up showing that stands as the program's best. The Bears nearly equaled that standard, but wound up a mere 3.5 points shy of Swarthmore in second.

Reilly was sensational over a hectic final day of competition at Muhlenberg, competing in two sprint finals and taking part in a pair of relays. The rookie became the first Ursinus champion in the 400-meter dash since 2015 with a time of 49.94, and garnered the silver medal in the 200-meter dash with a collegiate-best 22.37.

Reilly also ran the lead leg of the 4x400-meter relay, which polished off the proceedings on the highest of notes as freshman Bradley Duncan-Taylor, junior Austin Bittenbender, and junior Andre Kelly succeeded Reilly and combined for a time of 3:24.13, almost a full second ahead of Gettysburg in second.

Sophomore Mike Felix brought his javelin prowess to the fore with a dominating performance, registering a career-best heave of 192-11 to blow past the runner-up by almost 18 feet. The sophomore became the first Ursinus javelin champion since 2009 and was joined on the podium by Bittenbender, who uncorked a six-foot PR to claim third at 174-11. Sophomore Evan Giannetti gave the Bears a trio of place winners by taking eighth at 161-01.

Carter, meanwhile, ascended to the podium with a bronze medal in the 100-meter dash after a personal-best 11.10. He also earned a place in the 200, crossing in eighth at 23.33.

Carter and Reilly were also part of the second-place 4x100-meter relay group, joining freshman Tyree Williams-Jackson and Bittenbender to finish in 42.97 seconds, less than two-thirds of a tick off the school record. It was the second medal in three years in the shortest relay event for the Bears, with Bittenbender taking part in a third-place run at the 2017 outdoor meet.

Sophomore Griffin McMann secured a bronze medal in the shot put with a toss of 47-00.25, and freshman Nick Galbraith – Friday's hammer champion – placed fifth with a mark of 43-9.25, a personal best by more than three feet.

Freshman Brandon Slaboda posted a personal record in the 400-meter hurdles, finishing in 1:01.34 to grab fifth place.

Kelly moved up two spots from his prelims finish to place fifth in the 800 with a 1:57.14.

Bittenbender finished seventh in the 100 (11.37), while Duncan-Taylor was seventh in the 400 (51.40).