WALLER, COLES PICK UP WINS AS RAMS FINISH SECOND AT MORGAN STATE INVITATIONAL
Event: Morgan State Invitational – Baltimore, Md.
The Short Story: Junior Ryan Coles and sophomore Xavier Waller picked up wins to highlight VCU men's track & field weekend at the Morgan State Invitational. Coles took home gold in the shot put and should qualify for the NCAA postseason, while Waller took home the gold in the decathlon. Overall, the Rams finished second at the meet, less than two points behind the victors from UM-Eastern Shore.
- Coles grabbed gold in the men's shot put with an outdoor personal best of 57' 6 ½". The throw was nearly a three-foot improvement on his previous best, moved him into #2 all time at VCU, and should qualify him for the NCAA post season in the event as the mark currently ranks 37th in the East Region. Coles continued to shine in the discus taking home a bronze medal with his throw of 164', which continued his streak of meets throwing over 160 feet to five. His medal performances weren't done there though, he also grabbed bronze in the hammer with a throw of 159'6".
- Waller won the decathlon when his 10-event total came to 5939, to edge out second place by 30 points. The score moves him into fifth all-time at VCU. Waller had event wins in the high jump and 110-hurdles and finished in the top three in four other events on his way to the victory. Christopher Smith was fifth with VCU's ninth highest all-time score of 5586.
- Mohamed Adam was second in the 3000-meter steeplechase in 9:37.80, which places him seventh all time at VCU in his first attempt at the race. Matt Earman was close behind in fourth with a time of 10:10.94. Adam also finished on the medal stand in the 1500m with his third place effort of 3:58.49, and he was again followed closely behind by freshman Ben Sorensen who was fifth in 3:58.94.
- Brandon Ruffin grabbed bronze in the shot put with his second best ever outdoor throw of 56' 1 ¼". Ruffin was also sixth in the discus, just missing 150 feet for the day.
- The 4x400 relay of Tehquin Warrick, Khalid Khamis, Jacob Garcia, and George Moore secured fourth place with a time of 3:17.14.
- Chase Turner made the finals in the 110-hurdles, where he set a PR of 14.62 seconds to finish third. Close behind him in seventh was Kyle Martin with a time of 14.94.
- The 4x100 relay team of Darius Green, Warrick, Desmond Smallwood, and Moore navigated the baton around the track in 42.38 seconds to finish fifth on the day.
- Freshman Racheed Davis had a strong showing in the triple jump. His leap of 46' 10 ¼" was good enough for sixth place on the day and moved him into seventh all time for the Rams.
- Khamis for the second week in a row achieved a significant milestone in the 800m. This time he cracked 1:52 for the first time with his run of 1:51.95 for sixth place. The time was just two-tenths of a second from making the all time list at VCU.
- VCU will head to the prestigious Penn Relays next week in its last event prior to the 2014 Atlantic 10 Outdoor Championships.