GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Saturday proved especially for productive for the Florida State men’s track & field team, thanks in large part to the productivity of the men’s sprinters.
Senior Andre Ewers made his season debut in the 100-meter dash and dropped an ACC-leading and NCAA East Preliminary qualifying time of 10.22 at the Tom Jones Memorial. It was another step forward in his methodical return from a season-ending injury during the indoor campaign.
Meanwhile, senior Michael Timpson Jr. capped a strong weekend, following up his NCAA East qualifying 20.95 in the 200 on Friday with a personal-best 100-meter time of 10.29 on Saturday. Freshman Jhevaughn Matherson also assured himself a spot in at the NCAA postseason with a collegiate-best 100-meter time of 10.32.
Indoor All-American sprinter Bryand Rincher made his outdoor debut Saturday and punched his ticket to the ACC Championship meet in the 100-meter dash when he ran 10.50. It is his fastest wind-legal time since 2016; his sophomore season in high school.
Senior Darryl Haraway, who has also been battling back from injury, posted a season-best and ACC 100-meter qualifying time of 10.59.
In all, six FSU men appear to have solidified NCAA East qualifying spots over the weekend, including DaeQwan Butler and Kyle Fearrington in the 400-meter dash, and Tyricke Highman in the 400-meter hurdles. Butler dropped a personal-best time of 46.26 to place eighth overall and second among collegians. Fearrington was two spots back in 46.60, his fastest one-lap circuit since 2017.
Highman’s PB (52.40) came on Friday, but the sophomore also recorded a personal-best of 13.91 in the 110-meter hurdles to finish third.
“Overall, I’m pleased with our results,” FSU coach Bob Braman said. “We had some nice breakthroughs and a few comeback efforts as well. The men’s sprints in the 100 and 400 meters all stepped up today.”
While the men’s 4×100 had already secured an NCAA East qualifying time, the team of Darryl Gay, Matherson, Timpson and Ewers lowered their season-best to 39.14, placing second behind Florida.
While there were fewer NCAA East-qualifying performances on the women’s side, there were some notable additions.
The biggest breakthrough of the day came from junior Kayla Maczuga, who registered a personal-best of 1.75 meters (5-8.75) in the high jump to place second and virtually assure herself a spot in the NCAA postseason for the first time. Maczuga also moved into a share of ninth all-time on top-10 list.
Jayla Kirkland’s season debut in the 100-meter dash produced a time of 11.59, which will get her into the NCAA postseason. Teammate Shauna Helps strengthened her standing with a season-best 11.53.
So too did junior Ashley Miller, whose all-conditions season-best of 13.48 in the 100-meter hurdles is well within the top 48 in the NCAA East.
In all, the Noles cranked out eight personal-best performances on Saturday. Senior Istvan Szogi finished sixth overall and was the third collegian across the finish line in the 1500-meter run with a lifetime-best of 3:46.16. Tyler Dau also recorded a personal-best of 3:50.72.
Also joining the PB parade were multi-eventers David Lott (37.84m/124-1) and Hunter Napier (37.73m/123-9) in the discus.
With the ACC Outdoor Championships looming on the horizon, the Noles added seven new automatic qualifiers – six men and one woman – over the course of the weekend.
Saturday’s light Penn Relays schedule produced modest results. Senior Brandon Tirado advanced to the finals of the men’s hammer championship section and finished eighth (60.01m/196-10), while Conor McClain placed 14th in the men’s college section of the javelin (54.45m/178-7).
Next up are the ACC Championships in Charlottesville, Va. (May 9-11), where the men will attempt to defend their title and the women will seek redemption after falling just short in 2018. That meet will also mark the final opportunity to earn an NCAA postseason berth, which requires a top-48 ranking in all individual events.
“We need to have a great two weeks of training and build off this momentum if we want to win ACC’s,” Braman said.