Men’s Track and Field wins PL Indoor Championship

Army Athletic Communications

February 21st, 2019 | Army and Community Sports, Sports
 For the first time since 2010, the Army West Point Men’s Track and Field team won the Patriot League Indoor Track and Field Championship Sunday at Annapolis, Maryland. The Black Knights were strong across the board, posting 260 points to claim the title.             Photo provided by Army Athletic Communications

For the first time since 2010, the Army West Point Men’s Track and Field team won the Patriot League Indoor Track and Field Championship Sunday at Annapolis, Maryland.
The Black Knights were strong across the board, posting 260 points to claim the title.

Coach’s Corner: Head Coach Mike Smith
“A great team effort from our men this weekend. When I first arrived here in 2014, winning a championship on the track was a very tall ask. We were mired in the middle of the conference and struggled to score in all of the events. Our roster was thin and our outlook was bleak.
“The Firsties that are wearing the championship hats and T-shirt’s today are the same kids that got beaten soundly at this meet as plebes in 2016. Those days are over. I am happy for them and proud of our entire team. Our coaches, our OR’s, our trainers, and our coaches have all put in the work to make this possible and I am happy for all of them and appreciate all of their efforts.
“We had wins everywhere out there today. We won on the track and we won in the field. We had so many outstanding efforts, it’s difficult to single any one thing out. The records and the wins are the obvious focal points but those are easy to see in the results.
“I prefer to highlight what our seniors did to bring the trophy home. Those are the guys that appreciate this the most. Jeff Giannetino won the high jump again. He has been so consistent for us that it is easy to take him for granted. He is always there at the end jumping alone. But those guys don’t come along very often and he is such a special kid. He never complains and always willing to work. He deserves every bit of this. What a career.
“Andre Vaughn scored for us in the 60 and the 200. That was a kid that we almost cut as a plebe. He just kept coming to practice and doing what we asked and then all of sudden he’s beating people and setting records and pretty soon he is a guy that you got to have. I really appreciate those types of kids that just grind away and see the results pay off.
“Kenneth Brinson has been doing med school interviews all winter and trying to keep up with school and was a starter on the football team all fall. What can you say about a kid that is spread so thin like that? He just shows up and competes. Never complains. He is an amazing kid and we are lucky to have him.
“Mikey Singer has been one of our most consistent performers all year and today he got the points we needed him to get. Last year, he didn’t even score in this meet. Now, he is wearing the champion hat. We hung him out on a island today in the 1,000 and told him to go get the job done and he did what we asked.  He is one of the grittiest kids we have and one you can count on.
“Kevin Dyer was a kid that we found at the prep school. He wasn’t even a recruit. He has been unstoppable at times and holds multiple school records. He was solid out there in the 60m and I know he wishes that the 200 had gone better but that wasn’t in the cards. He did his job and has been a force and guiding our young men all year.
“Then there are the two Bens. Boswell and Sims. Those guys were warriors all weekend. We asked a lot of those two. Ben Sims competed in the 60m, the long jump, and the triple jump and scored in all of them. Ben Boswell ran on the 4×800, the distance medley and the open 800. Combined, those guys were responsible in part for 45 points. What they did was tremendous.
“Every one of our guys played a role in the overall outcome today, but those Firsties are the ones that are the tip of the spear for us and I have to put the spotlight on them.”

Event winners:
• Men’s 60mh: Freshman Justin Young—7.87 (Meet record);
• Men’s 200m: Sophomore Kedrin Jefferson—21.31 (Program record);
• Men’s 800m: Junior Jackson Sullivan—1:51.66;
• Men’s 3000m: Junior Roman Ollar—8:14.81;
• Men’s High Jump: Giannettino—2.09;
• Men’s Shot Put: Freshman Jamir Gibson—17.18;
• Men’s DMR: Jackson Sullivan, freshman Kevin Sembrat, Boswell and junior Keagan Smith—9:56.64.

Notable performances:
• Men’s 60m: Sims—6.88, third place;
• Men’s 400m: Al-Tarik Samuel—48.71, second place;
• Men’s 400m: Aidan Christensen—48.72, third place;
• Men’s 500m: Tyrell Maddox—1:02.85, second place;
• Men’s 800m: Boswell—1:52.03, second place;
• Men’s Mile: Smith—4:12.17, second place;
• Men’s 3000m: Ben Petrella—8:18.82, third place;
• Men’s 4×400: Justin Young, Al-Tarik Samuel, Aidan Christensen and Tyrell Maddox—3:12.27, second place;
• Men’s Shot Put: Michael Renard—16.88.

• Young was named Rookie of the Meet for his meet record setting performance in the 60mh.
• Jefferson’s 21.31 beat the program record of 21.40 from the Penn State National Open.
• Army has improved its point total in each season under Mike Smith.
• 2015, fourth (104), 2016, second (140), 2017, second (168), 2018, second (197), 2019, first (260)