ABILENE, Texas - On Day 1 of the McMurry/Heartland Invitational track and field meet, junior thrower Paul Davis (Lubbock, Texas/Coronado H.S.) proved to be the War Hawks' "Man of Steel" – literally – as he obliterated the school shot put record with a heave of 67' 4 ¼". Davis' mark not only qualifies him for the USA Track and Field Outdoor National Championships, but it is currently the best mark in the entire nation at any level.
(Texas thrower Ryan Crouser has the next best mark at 67' 0 ½").
"There's no way to describe the flood of emotions," said McM throws coach Jerry Johnson. "I'm just so proud for him.
"Paul was smooth and kept his shoulders back extremely well. He got his right foot turned, getting his hips and legs into the throw."
It was the fourth time this season that Davis has broken what was his own War Hawks' outdoor shot put record, this time bettering the mark by three-and-one-half feet. Prior to his monster effort at the McMurry/Heartland Invitational, Davis' most recent record-breaking effort came at the Texas Relays on March 29 when he went 63' 10 ¼".
Elsewhere among the first-day efforts for the War Hawks was a winning leap of 6'9" in the high jump from Jajuan Austin, Davis' brother. Teammate Chris Veail was second at 6' 3 ¼".
In the men's long jump, Desmond Williams and Dillon Wilkins finished second and third overall. Williams leaped 23' 6" and Wilkins went 23' 3 ½".
Zachary Frazier was second in the men's hammer and Garrison Railsback was second to Davis in the shot.
In the women's long jump, McM had a 1-2 finish from Shanita Coleman and Tiana Alexander. Coleman had a winning jump ,of 18' 7 ¾", while Alexander posted a mark of 17' 11 ½".
Sophomore women's thrower Destiny Kesee was a double winner, taking home gold in both the women's shot and hammer throw. Kesee won the shot by going 43' 4 ½", with fellow War Hawk LaNissa Burns in second place (41' 6 ½").
In the hammer, Kesee had a huge effort of 145' 9 ½". Burns was also second in the hammer with a toss of 129' 5".
Among the few running events contested on Friday, Alyssa Fields won the grueling 3000-meter steeplechase in a time of 12:21.65 minutes.
The McMurry 4x800 relay quartet – consisting of Mercedes Bietendorf, Mary Affleck, Leah Doughty and Chantel Ruffin – had a winning time of 10:14.35 minutes, as well.
Information for this story provided by McMurry Sports Information.
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