The track and field teams were in action this past weekend at the Philadelphia Big 5 Meet. It was a cold and windy day, which caused difficulties for some events, like the pole jump. There was no team scoring, but Villanova had several individual first place medals and other personal records throughout the team.
The men’s team had five first place finishers, and the women’s team also had five first place finishers in both track and field events. The men also had four second place medals and eight third place medals. The women finished with six silvers and four bronze medals. Many individuals on both teams also set personal bests.
On the men’s side, the first-place finishers were Keegan Hughes in the 400-meter hurdles, Thomas Conboy in the pole vault, Malik Cunningham in the triple jump and Jadyn Anczarski in the discus and hammer throw. It was a personal best 50.11 meters for Anczarski. It’s the first time he’s made it over 50, and it moves him up to fifth in school history.
Jim Keys finished second in the pole vault. Both he and Conboy completed the same level bar and failed on the same level as well, but because Conboy completed the 4.51-meter height on his first try and Keys didn’t, Conboy got the win and Keys finished second.
In other field events, Michael Troup finished second in the long jump, Eduardo Perez finished second in shot put and Joe DiDario finished second in javelin. Hughes won his strongest event, the 400-meter hurdles, on his first time running it since May of 2019.
Freshmen Nicholas Mollica and Mac Costonis both set personal best times in the 400-meter hurdles, while finishing third and sixth in the event. Richie Bush finished second in the 200-meter race with a time of 22.12.
On the women’s side, Grayce French continues to break school records in discus. French set the school record at the Raleigh Relays, which had stood since 2003. Nine days later at this tournament, she broke her own record, recording a 50.9-meter throw, moving her into 24th place in the East region qualifying list.
First place winners from other field events include French winning shot put, Ashley Preston taking pole vault, Emily Galvin winning hammer throw and Liv Morgan taking home first in javelin.
Jul Thomson had an incredible day, finishing second in hammer, third in shot put and third in discus while recording personal bests in all events. Teresa Rotolo finished second in Javelin.
Freshman Roschell Clayton finished second in the high jump. In the track events, Trudy Ann-Williamson had a great meet, winning the 100 meters and finishing second in the 200. Jada Thomas finished second in the hurdles and sixth in the 200. Trinity Hart finished third in the 100-meter hurdles while setting her personal best time.
Nikki Merrill, Nova’s lone runner in the 400, finished sixth with a time of 1:01:18. Jennifer Barbour and Faith Robinson, who both competed with Hart in the long jump, also competed in the 100 meters and finished fourth and fifth. Barbour posted a personal best in the 100 meters and tied her personal best in the long jump.
Up next for Villanova is the Temple Invite on Saturday. Villanova hopes to maintain the strong individual performances from those who stepped up. For the men’s team, some of them will be in action Friday at the Joe Walker Invitational hosted by Mississippi.