Cahoy Leads Three Huskers to Big Ten Titles
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Steven Cahoy won the Big Ten pole vault title, leading three Nebraska track and field athletes to Big Ten individual titles on Sunday at the Big Ten Outdoor Track and Field Championships.
Cahoy, a senior from Grand Island, became the Big Ten pole vault champion for the first time after finishing second four times in his career. Nick Percy won his second straight discus championship and Brittni Wolczyk won the women's javelin title for the Huskers.
The Husker men finished third in the team race with 97 points. Penn State won with 117 points, and Ohio State was second at 103. The Husker women were sixth with 76 points. Purdue won with 133 points.
Cahoy finally captured the title with a final clearance of 17-5 (5.31m). He finished second at the Big Ten Indoor Championships this year and in 2016, and he was the runner-up at both the indoor and outdoor conference meets in 2015.
"It feels great," Cahoy said. "It's been a long time. I've had it taken from me four different times and I was finally able to get it."
Cahoy was able to set his best mark of the season despite jumping in winds of 20-plus miles per hour all day. Tyler Loontjer took third place for the Huskers with a clearance of 17-1 (5.21m).
"It was pretty hectic to start off," Cahoy said. "The bars were falling down when guys were on their way up to clear it, and we had to wait 20 to 30 minutes at times to jump. It kind of calmed down toward the end, and the guys that could get through it got through it and achieved their goals."
Percy set a season best of 206-4 (62.91m) on his third attempt to win the discus gold medal and retain his Big Ten title. It was the best throw in a Husker uniform for the defending national champion in the event. Percy's only better mark of his career - 207-11 (63.38m) - came last summer while competing in Europe. Percy scored 16 team points for the Big Red on the weekend. Redshirt freshman Nick Coghill also scored in the event, finishing sixth with a personal-best 179-3 (54.65m).
"It's a big thing to come back and win it again. This isn't an easy event in this conference," Percy said. "I knew it was going to be a tough meet. I struggled a little bit coming in the first round with a foul, but I'm happy I at least came back and had a couple of throws over 60 (meters) and got 62.91 in the third round."
Brittni Wolczyk won the women's javelin title for the first time in her career. The sophomore was the runner-up last year. Wolczyk set a personal best of 178-9 (54.48m) on her last attempt, and four of her six throws would have won her the title on Sunday. The Husker women have won three of the last four Big Ten javelin titles.
"I kind of went into this confident but also unsure because of the wind, and I think it was really anybody's game today," Wolczyk said. "I think the wind was definitely a factor in how everybody performed, so I was kind of surprised with my last throw."
Landon Bartel took the silver medal in the high jump, clearing a personal-best 7-2 1/2 (2.20m), which ranks eighth in NU history. Mike McCann was sixth in the event, and Grant Anderson was eighth. Both cleared 6-11 (2.11m).
Tierra Williams was the runner-up in the triple jump at 43-5 1/4 (13.24m) - her second medal of the weekend - while Angela Mercurio earned a medal for the first time, finishing third with a PR 43-4 1/4 (13.21m).
Kaiwan Culmer recorded a personal record of 52-10 3/4 (16.12m) on his last triple jump attempt to secure a third-place finish. Culmer entered the final round in fifth place but produced the best mark of his career to earn a Big Ten medal for the third time in his career.
Wyatt McGuire finished fourth in the 5,000 meters in a time of 14:25.73, giving him 11 team points on the weekend.
Drew Wiseman took sixth in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 53.21, while Andy Neal was seventh at 55.14. The women's 4x400-meter hurdlers finished fifth, sixth and seventh. Jasmine Barge was fifth at 58.35, Michaela Peskova was sixth at 59.08, and Virginia Hill was seventh at 59.55.
Barge also placed sixth in the 100-meter hurdles in 13.35. Luke Siedhoff finished eighth in the 110-meter hurdles with a personal-best time of 14.01. Antoine Lloyd, who had the third-fastest qualifying time on Saturday, fell after the last hurdle and was disqualified. Jake Bender placed seventh in the 400 meters in 46.53.
Toni Tupper finished sixth in the shot put at 50-10 1/4 (15.50m). Chase Wolinski was sixth in the javelin at 153-2 (46.70m). Sydney Otto set a personal best of 151-6 (46.19m) to finish seventh.
The women's 4x400-meter relay (Kierra Griggs, Barge, Peskova, Chelsey Jones) ran 3:37.37 and finished third. The men's 4x400-meter relay (Neal, Moujtaba Mohammed, Sam Bransby, Bender) posted the 10th-fastest time in NU outdoor history, 3:06.18, to finish fifth.
Both the men's and women's 4x100-meter relays finished eighth to score one team point each. The men (Davon Clark, Wiseman, Jake Nelson, Lloyd) ran 41.34 and the women (Chanel Freeman, Quashira McIntosh, Jones, Lakayl Harris) ran 46.85.