Ohio's consistent bright spots shined through the crowded field in the Thundering Herd Open on Friday and Saturday at Marshall.
Standing out for the Bobcats was Jordan Porter, who came in fifth in the shot put with a throw of 14.52 meters. Also coming in fifth was Alyssa Atkinson, who finished the mile in 4:56.40.
Christina Seas also earned a sixth place finish in the 5K with a time of 17:51.97.
Gaza Odunaiya with a throw of 16.54 meters, Emma Ryan with a throw of 16.43 meters and Cassidy Cleland with a throw of 15.05 meters finished 11th, 14th and 20th, respectively, in the weight throws.
Ohio came into this meet to face a crowded field of schools from a wide geographical range. Florida International, Appalachian State, Bowling Green, Saint Louis, Wofford, Cincinnati, Toledo and Winthrop, among others, were at the event.
These crowded field meets are becoming second nature now to the Bobcats, as they are coming off a 20 team meet last week at Youngstown State. But the competition was stiffer Friday and Saturday at Marshall, as consistent high finishers for the Bobcats found themselves finishing farther back than usual in this meet.
Olivia Mayfield, who has not finished lower than third in the long jump at any meet this season, finished in 10th with a jump of 5.54 meters. The ‘A’ 4x400-meter relay team that earned a top-five finish in every meet this season finished ninth.
Emily Deering, Marissa Handel, Gracie Huffman and Erin Stewart who make up the ‘A’ team also found themselves farther back from the top slot than normal in the individual 400-meter dash. This group that normally finds all members in or close to the top-20, but on Saturday saw the highest finish came from Huffman, who came in 22nd at a time of 58.43. Deering and Stewart came in at 35th and 37th, respectively.
While the Bobcats can get used to the big meets by competing in them, the importance is on the quality of the competition which was illustrated by Friday and Saturday.
This is a young Bobcat squad that is learning about the importance of fitness to success during meets, so there isn’t a whole lot to worry about going forward. As coach Clay Calkins said, it’s a learning curve in hopes of getting better.
“There are no special plays unfortunately, its just about the level of conditioning,” Calkins said.
The Bobcats will return to the track for another two day meet as they head to Notre Dame on Feb. 3-4 for the Meyo Invitational.