The Wildcat men?s track and field team from Abilene Christian University extended its streak of Lone Star Conference championships by a narrow margin, and the women?s team fell short by a much smaller margin of reclaiming a title.
The men held off challenger Texas A&M-Kingsville to win the team title, 176.33 points to 170.83, after the two teams finished second (ACU at 3:11.21) and third (Kingsville at 3:12.32) to Angelo State (3:10.36) in the meet finale, the 1,600 relay.
The Javelinas had pulled to within 3.5 points of the Wildcats after the 5,000 meters in the 20th of 21 events.
It was the 19th consecutive LSC men?s championship for Abilene Christian starting in 1993 (the 1995 meet was not completed because of inclement weather so no trophy was awarded).
In the women?s competition, ACU trailed reigning champ Angelo State by 27.5 points after 18 events. The Wildcats rallied to outscore Angelo State 16-0 in the 200 (won by ACU?s Shennae Steele in 24.21), 13-4 in the 5,000 (ACU?s Chloe Susset was second in 17:49.58) and 10-8 in the 1,600 relay (ACU won in 3:43.88).
But that left ACU second with 195 points to Angelo State?s 195.5 ? extending the Rambelles streak to four straight LSC women?s titles. ACU last won in 2008.
Angelo had scored a one-point victory, 222 to 221, in 2004 in Kingsville over the ACU women.
For the Wildcat men, Nick Jones added to his growing list of accomplishments with a meet record in the discus throw at 199-2. The three-time NCAA Division II champion broke the meet record in the second round, but he failed to improve in the finals after fouling on his third attempt.
He also placed sixth in the javelin Saturday for 13 points ? giving him points in each of the four throwing events here. He is a provisional qualifier for the U.S. Olympic trials in the shot put and discus throw and will seek his record-setting fourth straight Division II discus title in Pueblo, Colo., May 24-6.
ACU?s Jordan Geary was an upset winner in the men?s 400 in 46.79 to spark the Wildcats in the evening session of running finals. He came back to run 21.02 for runner-up in the 200 for 18 points for coach Roosevelt Lofton?s team.
?I just got out as fast as I could and fed off the guy in front of me,? Geary said. ?I felt good after running the 4x1 (400 meter relay) earlier. I have been having hamstring problems (earlier in the season) so I haven?t been running to my full potential, but I still believed I could win.?
The only other winner Saturday for the ACU men was Dennis Bain in the 110 hurdles (14.15). The Wildcats also were runners-up in the 400 relay in 40.01 as the Javelinas won in 39.71 to become the first LSC men?s team to ever run under 40 seconds in the event at the league meet.
For the Wildcat women, Susset turned in more heroics Saturday after winning the steeplechase Friday. She repeated as champion of the 1,500 meters in 4:36.83 before her runner-up effort in the 5,000 meters later Saturday night.
Steele was a double winner in the sprints (11.75 in the 100), Lexus Williams won the 100 hurdles (13.77), and the ACU women were runners-up in the 400 relay (46.44 to 46.23 by West Texas A&M).
Information provided by ACU athletics department.