Photo courtesy of Texas State Athletics
Texas State men crowned Sun Belt champions, women place second
The Bobcats took home eight individual gold medals and 21 all-conference selections at the Sun Belt Conference Outdoor Championships in Jonesboro, Arkansas over the weekend, where the men’s team earned the league title with 122.5 points and the women’s team finished second with 128.
Juniors Jaylon Jorge and Leslie Romero each picked up victories on Friday, the first day of the meet. Jorge tossed for a personal-best 57.15 meters (187-06) in the men’s hammer throw. Romero ran for the No. 2 time in program history in the 10,000 meters at 36:11.53 and also broke her own school record in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, placing fifth at 10:39.89.
Naomi Ferdinand began the next day with another win for Texas State. The junior leapt for 6.11 meters (20-0.50) in the women’s long jump. Fellow junior Ben Collerton retained his championship in the men’s decathlon with 7,180 points. Senior thrower T’Mond Johnson took his third-straight title in the men’s shot put, launching for 19.70 meters.
Senior Tramesha Hardy three-peated as well in the women’s 200-meter dash on the final day of the competition, crossing the finish line in 23.14 seconds. Hardy was also the top scorer of the meet, racking up 21.5 points by placing in the top three of the women’s 100-meter dash, 4x100- and 4x400-meter relay.
The maroon and gold’s final wins came from sophomores Brandon Busby and Jaylen Allen. Busby received gold in the men’s discus throw at 54.66 meters (179-4), a career best. Allen became the No. 4 runner in school history in the men’s 400 meters, clocking in at 46.50 seconds.
Despite the victories, the men’s team still trailed heading into the final three events of the championship. Senior Kyle Denomme (1:50.50 800 meters) and junior Michale Reyes (52.39-second 400 meter hurdles) both placed in the top three of their respective events to come from behind and take the conference title.
"We are so proud of these guys and how they competed," head coach Jody Stewart said in a statement. "We are elated to have this moment with this group. They stuck with us and trusted the process. This was a monumental moment for our men's program. Special thanks to our entire administration, supporters and fans."
A few Bobcats will move on to the NCAA West Preliminary regional meet, taking place May 23-25 in Sacramento, California.