PHILADELPHIA - At the second annual Big 5 Invitational, the University of Pennsylvania men's track and field team boasted six individual champions over their city rivals on Saturday afternoon at Franklin Field.
On a wet day in Philadelphia, sophomore Jake Brenza got the Quakers off to a good start. He was ahead of the field heading into the final three throws. He then left no doubt with his winning toss of 14.77 meters (48 feet, 5 1/2 inches). It was nearly three feet better than any other throw on Saturday.
Brenza combined with sophomore Maalik Reynolds and senior Jeff Seddon for Penn's thre Big 5 titles in the field events.
Seddon won the long jump competition by three centimeters. He claimed the Big 5 title on his final jump. He entered that attempt in third place, but he leaped past the top two with a winning jump of 6.57 meters (21-06.75 ft.).
Reynolds added to his career accolades with a Big 5 victory of 2.15 meters (7-00.50 ft.). He passed at the first two heights and then cleared 1.98 meters on his first attempt. He did so at the next bar (2.03m) and was the last man standing. He raised the bar three more times and finished with another seven-foot performance. Teammate Ikechi Nnamani was third in the event. He missed just once on the day leading up to his finish at 1.98 meters (6-06 ft.).
Sophomore Mason Smith won the title in the 100 meters. He beat the field with his time of 11.03. It was four-hundreths of a second better than La Salle's Oren Buie.
Freshman Tom Timmins was the lone Penn representative in the 400-meter hurdles. He won in thrilling fashion with a photo finish against Villanova's Nicoy Hines. When the results came across the scoreboard, Timmins was officially the Big 5 champion. His time of 53.74 was one-hundreth of a second better.
Senior Mike Vido helped the Quakers sweep the 5,000 meters on their home track. Senior Laura Steel also won the event on the women's side for Penn. Vido was comfortably ahead when he crossed the finish at 15:06.05. Teammate Kevin Foy was third with a time of 15:18.87.
In the first javelin competition of the year for Karl Ingram, the sophomore nearly reached 200 feet and finished as the runner up. His fifth toss of the day was easily his best and it landed at 60.72 meters (199-02 ft.). He was the top collegian. Only former Quaker and national champion, Brian Chaput, had a better toss.
In the 800 meters, senior James Finucane returned to finish as the runner up in the event. He finished in 1:54.46. Junior Matt Chylak was fourth with a time of 1:54.82.
A long trip awaits the Quakers next week. Penn heads to Austin, Texas, to compete in the Texas Relays, March 28-31.