Salukis wrap up successful weekend at GVSU Big Meet with four more event titles

    Sophomore Ashley Gaston earned her first career Saluki event win on Saturday in the shot put with a launch of 14.72m (48-03.50).

    Sophomore Ashley Gaston earned her first career Saluki event win on Saturday in the shot put with a launch of 14.72m (48-03.50).

    Feb. 9, 2013


    By Tyler Wooten

    Day Two Results | Day One Results

    ALLENDALE, Mich. -- Southern Illinois track and field will come home from the GVSU Big Meet with six total event wins, four of which were won on Saturday at the massive meet hosted by Grand Valley State.

    Junior Kenya Culmer won her second-ever triple jump title with a leap of 11.91m (39-01.00), which was nearly a foot better than the second place finisher. This brings Culmer's total win count for the 2013 indoor season to seven between the high and triple jumps.

    Also claiming a second event this weekend was senior Zach Dahleen, who took home his first win in the 800 meter race this season in his first attempt, clocking in at 1:51.98. Fellow senior Lucas Cherry also finished high in the 800 with a time of 1:56.09 for 11th place.

    Sophomore Ashley Gaston won her first event as a Saluki in the shot put on Saturday, besting 52 other competitors with a launch of 14.72m (48-03.50). Fellow Salukis DeAnna Price (second place, 14.69m/48-02.50), Alexus Scott (eighth, 13.75m/45-01.50) D'Monami Gardner (ninth, 13.43m/44-00.75), and Erin Scott (12th, 13.15m/43-01.75) all finished in the upper quarter of competitors.



    Southern's final title came in the men's pole vault from senior Ryan Sidwell, who cleared 4.85m (15-11.00) for his second pole vault win this season.

    Curtis Wideman fell just short of claiming Southern's seventh overall title in the men's weight throw. Wideman bested 49 other throwers, but his best throw of 18.48m (60-07.75) tied Keenan Hamilton of Tiffin for first place. Unfortunately, Hamilton had the next best throw to break the tie for first place.

    Saluki track and field has one more tuneup before the Missouri Valley Conference Indoor Championships on Feb. 23-24, and head coach Connie Price-Smith likes the progress she has seen in her team leading up to it.

    "We had a good weekend, all in all," Price-Smith said. "We had a lot of season and personal bests, and we're heading in the right direction going into conference. We have one more weekend to sharpen this up."

    Southern's final tuneup will be at Eastern Illinois for the EIU Friday Night Special next Friday, Feb. 15.

    Other Notable Performances
    Remy Abrought - 200m dash (tenth place, 25.79 PR); 60m dash (16th place, 8.05 PR)
    Matthew Benes - 60m dash (12th place, 7.13)
    Lauren Cheadle - Long Jump (fourth place, 5.41m/17-09.00)
    Brian Cooper - Shot Put (fifth place, 15.91m/52-02.50); Weight Throw (sixth place, 18.17m/59-07.50 PR)
    Ashley Gaston - Weight Throw (ninth place, 17.64m (57-10.50)
    Blake Green - 200m dash (14th place, 22.64)
    Spencer Jackson - 200m dash (T-15th place, 22.66)
    Nirupama Sunderraj - 400m dash (11th place, 58.10 PR)
    Bradley Sauer - Shot Put (sixth place, 15.81m/51-10.50)
    Women's Distance Medley Relay - Fifth place, 12:00.09