Pacheco ties meet record at YSU National Invite

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – With the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Championships under a month away, the Slippery Rock University men’s indoor track and field team took to the Watson and Tressel Training Site  in Youngstown, Ohio to compete at the YSU National Invite this weekend for one of its final tune-ups.

Jordan Pacheco led The Rock’s effort with a win in the pole vault. Pacheco cleared 4.80 meters, which ties the meet record and is an NCAA provisional qualifying distance. Pacheco, who ranks ninth in the nation this season with his top clearance of 4.85 meters, has met the NCAA provisional qualifying standard four times this year.

SRU made it a clean sweep of the top four places in the event with Michael Horrigan (4.70 meters) placing second, Keiffer Reed (4.60) coming in third and Andrew Koksal (4.60) placing fourth. Horrigan and Koksal have already met the provisional mark earlier in the year while Reed’s distance was a .15-meter improvement over his previous season-high mark.

The trio of Noah Bostick, Nate Zigler and Ben Kloepping posted strong showings in the seven-event heptathlon. Bostick improved on his previous NCAA provisional qualifying total by registering an impressive 4,834 points to come in second place. Zigler followed close behind in third place with 4,581 points, just missing the NCAA provisional mark. Kloepping rounded out the pack in fifth place with 3,994 points.

Bostick’s total is the most in PSAC this season while Zigler’s is the second highest. Kloepping’s amount is tied for ninth in the conference. If the season ended today all three would qualify for conference championships as the top 12 scores are accepted.

The Slippery Rock 4×400-meter relay team of Hunter Williams, James Chandler, Monte Chapman and Jacob VanHouten continued its magical season with yet another victory. The team turned in a time of 3:18.59 to cruise to the win. Oakland finished in second place, more than three seconds off SRU’s pace at 3:21.76.

Slippery Rock also placed five runners in the top 15 of the 400-meter dash to dominate the event. Williams (49.29 seconds), Vanhouten (49.67) and Chandler (49.99) took second, fourth and fifth, respectively. Caleb Smithco (50.62) placed eighth and Chapman (51.19) claimed 15th place.

Williams, Vanhouten and Chandler all improved on their previous PSAC qualifying times while Smithco met the PSAC standard for the first time in 2014-15.

Smithco also enjoyed success in a pair of field events, placing second in the triple jump at 14.03 meters and clearing 6.36 meters to finish 12th in the long jump.

Tyler Melius led three Rock runners in the mile by clocking a 4:15.54 time to earn a second-place finish. Zac Patton and Tyler Palenchak joined Melius in the event and placed back-to-back in 14th and 15th place. Patton reached the PSAC qualifying time after running a 4:22.67 mile while Palenchak improved on his previous qualifying time by nearly a second at 4:23.99.

Sprinter Erik Record grabbed a pair of top-10 finishes by claiming second in the 60-meter dash at 7.89 seconds and 10th in the 200-meter dash at 22.62 seconds.

In throwing events, David Reinhardt and Nick Garuccio placed seventh and eighth in the weight throw with tosses of 15.50 meters and 15.02 meters. Both athletes have better qualifying marks on the year. Jerrod Galloway represented The Rock in the shot put, finishing eighth with a mark of 14.67 meters.

Slippery Rock athletes will have one final opportunity to qualify, or improve on their seeds, at the Kent State Tune-up on Feb. 21 in Kent, Ohio.



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