Tech earns four event titles at Clemson, Liberty

Bob Pollack Invitational Results | Liberty Kickoff Results

Four event titles behind Lauren Berman (mile), Neil Gourley (1,000 meters), Rachel Pocratsky (1,000) and Deakin Volz’s (pole vault) performances highlighted the Virginia Tech track and field teams’ outings at the Bob Pollack Invitational and Liberty Kickoff on Saturday.

Pocratsky posted the sixth-fastest time in NCAA history on the campus of Liberty, clocking a time of 2 minutes, 41.98 seconds to place first and reset her own school record.

The Maryland native wasn’t the only one to shine in the distance group, with the squad boasting three titles on the day.

“I’m happy with our progress,” distance coach Ben Thomas said. “I think we’re in good shape for the end of January. We’re training through a bit for the past two meets, so there’s definitely some sluggishness. If we get 100% healthy and keep the consistency going for the next four weeks, we’ll be very competitive at ACCs.”

Gourley, who turned in a time of 2:21.89, led a contingent of Hokies in the 1,000 meters, as Patrick Joseph (2:22.30) and Vincent Ciattei (2:22.81) placed second and third and Daniel Jaskowak (2:26.15) and Diego Zarate (2:26.68) took eighth and ninth.

The mile was similar with five Hokies placing in the top 10. Jack Joyce crossed the finish line in 4:08.02 to place fifth, while Brent Musselman (4:08.82), Andrew Goldman (4:08.63), Peter Seufer (4:09.92) and Bashir Mosavel-Lo (4:10.17, unattached) went 7-10.

On the women’s side, Berman, a redshirt sophomore, earned her first-ever event title in the mile with a time of 4:51.71. Sophomore Sara Freix (4:56.63) and Ellie Brush (5:05.03) recorded personal bests to finish third and fifth.

In the 1,000, led by Pocratsky, Tech had five of the sixth best times in the event. Pocratsky (2:41.98), Sarah Edwards (2:45.45), Katie Kennedy (2:47.93) and Laurie Barton (2:48.00) placed 1-4, while Kayla Richardson (2:53.24) took sixth.

“Rachel Pocratsky just ran the sixth-best 1,000 meters in NCAA history,” Thomas shared. “Joseph, Gourley and Ciattei swept the 1,000 with very solid times. Also had solid runs from Edwards and Kennedy.

“The long group guys and girls all ran the mile today, and it was nice to see Berman get the win and some PRs for the guys, as well. So that’s all encouraging and we’re getting some good work done in training. I like the focus and effort I’m seeing, so we’re planning on finishing strong this season!”

The pole vault group on the men’s side were at the Bob Pollack Invitational, and were led by Volz’s first-place effort as the Indiana native cleared a height of 5.49 meters (18 feet, 0 inches). Torben Laidig placed fourth in his first outing of 2018, and Jaelyn Demory placed ninth.

Select sprinters showcased their abilities with Nathan Hogye running his first 200 meters in the maroon and orange, while Austin Kolko improved his 200 time from last week.

Will Kendall turned in a top-10 finish, placing ninth in the high jump.

The Hokies will split up for three meets next weekend, going to Akron, Kentucky and Wake Forest.

PERSONAL BESTS

W Mile
Sara Freix, 4:56.63
Ellie Brush, 5:05.03

W 1,000
Rachel Pocratsky, 2:41.98
Sarah Edwards, 2:45.45
Katie Kennedy, 2:47.93
Laurie Barton, 2:48.00
Kayla Richardson, 2:53.24
Alyssa Shupe, 2:58.99

M Mile
Jack Joyce, 4:08.02
Brent Musselman, 4:08.82
Andrew Goldman, 4:08.83
Bashir Mosavel-Lo (unattached), 4:10.17
Ben Fleming (unattached), 4:14.17
Zachary Witt (unattached), 4:21.00
Osman Humeida (unattached), 4:23.39

M 1,000
Patrick Joseph, 2:22.30
Thierry Siewe Yanga, 2:27.07
Dave Whitfield, 2:31.00

For updates on Virginia Tech track & field, follow the Hokies on Twitter