McDonald’s Tayala Wins at Penn Relays

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – The Kent State track and field teams finished strong after three days of elite competition at the 119th Penn Relays.

Sophomore Matthias Tayala (McDonald, Ohio) headlined the final day (April 27) for the Golden Flashes by winning the College Men’s Hammer Throw Championship with a toss of 217 feet, 8 inches.  That mark is seventh in Kent State history.

Tayala also highlighted a solid showing in the field events on day two (April 26) with a second-place finish in the College Men’s Discus Throw Championship with a toss of 175-08.

In the College Women’s Discus Throw Championship, the Golden Flashes placed two in the top five as freshman Danniel Thomas (Shrewsbery, Jamaica) finished second at 170-06 and junior Joh’vonnie Mosley (Youngstown, Ohio) finished fourth at 162-06.

Freshman (Sugar Grove, Ohio) placed third in the College Men’s Pole Vault at 16-02.75.

The Flashes also had an impressive showing in the College Men’s High Jump as freshman Cody Jones (Canton, Ohio) placed fourth at 6-09.75 and senior Kenneth Agee (Shaker Heights, Ohio) finished sixth at 6-08.25.

Kent State was fifth in the College Men’s Shuttle Hurdles as senior Mitchell Seawood, Jr. (Warren, Ohio), sophomores Kyle Tywon (Tallmadge, Ohio) and Tyler Jones (Stow, Ohio), and freshman William Barnes (Columbus, Ohio) finished in 1 minute, 1.68 seconds.

In the College Women’s Shuttle Hurdles, senior Diana Dumitrescu (Campulung, Arges Romania), junior JoAnne Pittman (Capitol City, Md.) and sophomore Ann Marie Duffus (North Clarendon, Jamaica) placed fourth in 58.99.

Sophomore Roseanne Erickson (Alexandria, Minn.) and senior Michael Heller (Stow, Ohio) were among the opening day standouts Thursday (April 25) for the Kent State track and field teams at the Penn Relays.

Erickson won the College Women’s Long Jump with a leap of 20-04.25, which is second all-time in Kent State history. Erickson was just one inch off the school record set by Kym Wilson in 1988.

Heller placed fourth in the College Men’s 5,000-meter run in 14:23.22, also second all-time in school history for that event. Heller previously occupied the second spot in Kent State’s record book in the event at 14:25.99.

The women’s 400-meter relay of juniors Shanequa Williams (Akron, Ohio) and Katie Reiser (Wayne, Ohio), and sophomores Olivia Hallstein (Long Island, N.Y.) and Chanitta Westbrooks (Cleveland, Ohio) won its heat and finished 20th overall to advance to the College Women’s 400 relay final where it placed eighth in 46.53.

Thomas won the College Women’s Shot Put with a toss of 51-02.75.

Sophomore Jackie Leppelmeier (McComb, Ohio) placed fourth in the College Women’s Shot Put Eastern at 47-06.25 and sixth in the College Women’s Hammer Throw Championship at 186-06.

Senior Sara Oczypok (Pittsburgh, Pa.) finished second in the College Women’s Javelin Championship with a throw of 152-07.

Mosley was fifth in the College Women’s Shot Put Championship at 51-10.50.

The Penn Relays are the world’s oldest and largest relay carnival and showcase the best high school, collegiate and international athletes in the world.

Last year, the Penn Relays posted a three-day attendance total of 112,416, marking the ninth straight year and the 12th time in the past 13 years that the event has attracted 100,000 spectators.

The Flashes also had athletes competing on Friday (April 26) and Saturday (April 27) at the Ashland Alumni Open at Ashland University in Ashland, Ohio.  Sophomore Lynnese Beyan (Upper Darby, Pa.) won the 400 in 56.64.  Sophomore Kaila Gardner (Toledo, Ohio) finished second in 57.22, while junior Erica Hutson (Akron, Ohio) placed third in 57.74.

Beyan, Gardner and Hutson also joined freshman Taylor Farquhar (Belmont, Ohio) to win the 1,600 relay in a season-best 3:45.14.

The Kent State track and field teams return to action when they travel Friday (May 3) and Saturday (May 4) to the Campbell-Wright Open at Akron.

Courtesy: Kent State Sports Information

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