Senior Jarrett Mickens (Aurora, Ill./Waubonsie Valley) bettered his own school record en route to winning the long jump Saturday, while freshman Julian Smith (Chicago, Ill./Brother Rice) established a new standard in the 200m dash as the Valparaiso men’s track and field team competed on day one of the 2011 Horizon League Indoor Championships in Geneva, Ohio.
Valpo totaled 12 points on Saturday, ending the day in seventh place, but just 11 points out of a tie for second. Milwaukee currently owns the top spot in the team standings with 43.5 points.
Mickens continued his standout final season in the jumps with a career-best leap of 24’2 ¼” in the long jump on Saturday, out-doing his previous best by over five inches. The leap was more than enough to secure the win, as Mickens out-jumped his closest competitor by nearly a full foot.
On the track, Smith stood out on Saturday, covering the 200m dash in 21.87 seconds to qualify third for Sunday’s event final. The freshman sliced over four-tenths of a second off of his previous season-best time, and came in 0.33 seconds faster than the previous Crusader record of 22.20, set by Elliot Powell in 2005. Smith also qualified fifth for the event final in the 60m dash with a time of 6.97 seconds.
Junior Bill Rixon (Deerfield, Ill./Deerfield) contributed to the Crusader team score with a career-best toss of 52’1” in the weight throw, good for fifth place and the fifth-best mark in Valpo history. Rixon’s brother, sophomore Andrew Rixon (Deerfield, Ill./Deerfield), also posted a PR in the same event, placing seventh with a mark of 48’11 ½”.
Freshman Joe Holy (Bolingbrook, Ill./Joliet Catholic) moved into fourth place all-time at Valpo in the 400m dash, crossing the line in 50.86 seconds, but narrowly missed out on qualifying for Sunday’s final in the event. Senior Joel Hartenberger (Albuquerque, N.M./Sandia) ran a career-best time of 15:41.10 in the 5,000m run to lead the Crusader contingent in the event, finishing in 13th place.
Valparaiso concludes the 2011 indoor season with the final day of action at the league championship meet on Sunday morning. Sunday’s activity is slated for an 8 a.m. CST start.