(Story courtesy of South Plains College Sports Information)
South Plains College swept the team titles at the 2015 NJCAA National Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Kansas.
The 2015 Outdoor National Track and Field Championship concluded a little later than anticipated on Saturday, May 16 at the Gowans Stadium in Hutchinson, Kan. Due to weather conditions the championship was delayed for multiple hours. South Plains however pushed through and did so in style, winning both the men and women's 2015 NJCAA Outdoor National Crowns, the ninth consecutive win for the men and second consecutive win for the women.
With dominating performances the Texans took a large lead early in the last day of competition, eliminating any chance for competitors to take the win. With a total of 162.50 points, the South Plains men's team defended their national championship reign with a large 61.50 points ahead of runners-up Central Arizona.
The Lady Texans, however, were neck and neck with top opponent Iowa Central who was half a point above South Plains with two events left, women's high jump and women's 4x400 meter relay.
Freshman, Anyi Garcia-Solis finished fifth in high jump (5-05.25) earning four points, while the top Iowa jumper tied for seventh earning only one. Iowa Central also was not a match for South Plains in the 4x400 that consisted of powerhouse, Chrisann Gordon, Domonique Williams, Medinah Spencer, and Deja Harrison. The relay team finished as the national champions with a time of 3:39.45, earning an ending total of 122 team points, six and a half points over Iowa.
Gordon also earned her fourth individual national championship title upon dominating the women's 400-meter dash with a large lead to the finish line in a time of 51.74 seconds, while teammate Williams finishes at 53.71 as the runner-up.
"It means a lot to me to win another national title my last season at South Plains," Gordon said. "I did not want to go away losing."
Gordon was just one out of the many South Plains athletes that won national titles. Over the three-day meet South Plains came home with a total of eight national champions and 10 national runners-up.
Sophomore Kyle Robinson, the runner-up last year at outdoor nationals in Arizona, finished with his best performance of the season in the 400 hurdles. Robinson rounded the final curve well in the lead clocking a time of 50.97, a national champion finish.
"This year was way better in terms of preparation and stuff," Robinson said. "I feel great, I feel excited."
Also among the champions was Jereem Richards, the 2015 indoor national champion in the men's 400. He earned another national championship with his impressive time of 46.23 in the men's 400 outdoor competition. Richards also finished fourth in the men's 200, along with teammate Renard Howell, who earned his first national championship crown with a finishing time of 20.96.
"It feels great to be the 200 meter champion," Howell said. "This is something I have been working towards for forever. I missed indoors due to an injury, so to come back and win means the world to me."
Howell also received a second national championship in the men's 4x100 relay with a time of 39.99. Along with Howell the team consisted of Brian Smith, George Flaviano, and Andre Ewers.
Flaviano was apart of the men's 4x400 meter relay with Fred Kerley, Isaac Clark, and Robinson. The team finished in third at 3:11.00. Isaac Clark also ran the 800 earlier in the day and finished in fourth with a 1:52.00 flat.
There were also impressive performances by Victoria Salvadores (18:16.39), who finished third in the women's 5000 after being passed in the last second by an Iowa Central runner, Kamille Kronemann (18:16.39). Hurdle runner, Medinah Spencer is the national runner-up in the 100 hurdles with a time of 13.93
Andre Jefferson finished as the national runner-up in the men's long jump with a distance of 24-03.75. Vaulting to 14-09.00, Andre Pollard ties for sixth with Bo Haddock from Paradise Valley. Antibahs Kibiwott Kosgey the national champion in the men's 3000-meter steeplechase finishes as the national runner up in the 1500 at 3:50.49 a personal best.
Tying her season best of 127-10, Selena Orlenas places fifth in javelin. Also a thrower, Tasha Crosse finishes third after the multiple delays with a throw of 141-03 in women's discus.
For more on the South Plains College Track and Field 2015 NJCAA Outdoor Season visit www.spctexans.com, to view the performance list.