Marcus Connolly, The Paisano
On Saturday, April 4, the UTSA Roadrunner track and field team dominated their home meet, the UTSA Invitational, by winning two-thirds of the weekend’s 38 events.
Junior distance runners Dusan Makevic and Emily Perez, both of UTSA, won two events each at the Invitational, and freshman sprinter Dionte Robinson set a UTSA school-record in the 200-meter dash with a blazing 20.56 second performance.
Robinson’s wind-aided time broke the school’s five-year-old record of 20.60 seconds, which was previously held by four-time All-American Teddy Williams. Robinson’s 20.56 is the seventh fastest 200-meter time in the nation this spring. Robinson also ran the lead leg of the 4×100 relay team. Robinson, Aaron Lejuene, Christopher Hall and Jurmarcus Shelvin won, circling the track in 40.54 seconds.
Makevic won the 1500 in 3:52.87 and was later victorious in the 5000-meter run as well, finishing in 14:57.81. Makevic used the weekend to prepare toward his goal of qualifying for NCAA Regionals later in the season.
“I think I ran well. Today was a time trial so I can run well at the Mt. SAC Relays in two weeks,” Makevic said. “My goal is to run under 9:00 in the steeplechase at Mt. SAC so I can qualify for regionals. With the competition, if I find a good pace, I know I can break nine.”
Other track wins for the men’s team included Justin Gerbrecht’s 14.78 win in the 100-meter hurdles, senior Michael Medrano’s 1:54.39 performance in the 800 -meters, and Saul Vasquez’s 9:57.06 victory in the 3000 -meter steeplechase.
For the women’s team, Emily Perez won both the 800-meter run in 2:14.18 and crushed her competitors in the 5000-meter run with a 17:11 performance that was enough to win the race by more than a minute and a half. Senior Stephanie Wangui, the current Conference USA Athlete of the Week, won the 1500-meter run in 4:32.32.
In the sprints, three UTSA athletes — freshman Jennifer Arinze, sophomore Paige Patterson and junior Evelyn Clark — swept the 400 meter dash, finishing 1st in 55.83 seconds, 2nd in 55.90 seconds and 3rd in 56.07 respectively. Fellow Roadrunner senior Venessa Onwuchekwa won the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 1.02.65. The women’s 4×400 relay team finished the meet with a win as Swift, Arinze, Clark and Patterson passed the baton in 3:47.68.
The Roadrunner men dominated the Invitational, winning seven of eight field events. UTSA sophomore Victor Perez set a personal best of 54.56 meters in the hammer, while junior Jonas Gutierrez, also of UTSA, jumped 22’11” in the long jump. Roadrunner freshman Branden Perry jumped 6’8” in the high jump while teammate and fellow freshman Adrian Riley won the javelin with a throw of 54.11 meters.
The UTSA women picked up four wins in the field events; senior Whitney Flannel won the high jump, clearing 5’9¼“; sophomore Katelynn Homb won the hammer with a throw of 43.95 meters; senior Lindsey Pew won the pole vault, with a 12’1” performance ; and senior Zoe Meade won the long jump, leaping 17’10¾“.
The Roadrunner track and field team will return to competition next week at the Texas Invitational in Austin on Saturday, April 11.