The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Pittsburg State Sports

May 27, 2013

MIAA schools take track, field honors

National championships by Pittsburg State thrower John Talbert and Lincoln hurdler Sabiel Anderson headlined MIAA performances at the Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships, which ended Saturday night in Pueblo, Colo.

All told, athletes from eight MIAA schools collected 48 All-America honors. MIAA women posted 25 top-eight finishes, while the men had 23 All-Americans.

Talbert won the discus with a throw of 196 feet, 7 inches and became the Gorillas’ first national champion since Jeremy Jackson won the 60-meter hurdles indoors in 2010. Before Talbert, PSU’s last outdoors national champion was in 2002 when Joe Peppers won the decathlon.

Anderson swept the hurdles, taking the 110-meter highs in 13.66 seconds and the 400-meter hurdles in 49.49. Anderson, who qualified fifth in the 400 hurdles at 51.80, broke 50 seconds for the first time.

The MIAA had five national runners-up — Pittsburg State’s Marquise Cushon in the triple jump (he was seeded 10th) and Larissa Richards in the discus, Fort Hays State’s Makayla McPhail in the javelin and Lincoln’s Michelle Cumberbatch in the 400 hurdles and the Blue Tiger women’s 1600 relay team.

Lincoln finished third in the women’s team standings — only the second time in the last 11 years the Blue Tigers were not first or second — and sixth in the men’s standings. The Blue Tigers placed in the top eight in 17 events — 11 women and six men.

Pittsburg State ranked second among MIAA schools, tying for seventh place in the men’s standings and 17th place in the women’s standings. It was sixth top-10 finish for the Gorilla men in school history and their best finish since they tied for sixth in 2009. PSU’s women finished in the top 20 for the 12th time.

The Gorillas had six All-America performances by the men, including a seventh place by the 400 relay team of Jason Crowe, Keenan Soles, Greg Wright and Kyle Utsey.

PSU’s women had four All-Americans. Richards, in addition to finishing second in the discus, was fourth in the shot put and ends her career with six All-America honors.

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