ABILENE — The UT Tyler men’s track and field team won their first-ever American Southwest Conference team championship on Saturda, amassing 240 total points and claiming nine individual titles in a dominating performance.
Coach Bob Hepler earned Coach of the Year honors, Nick Huff was named the Outstanding Track Athlete of the Year and Buck Thompson was the High Point Athlete.
Senior Buck Thompson stole the show in the field events, winning the shot, discus and hammer throws, while Palencia bested his nearest opponent by nine meters to win the men’s javelin.
The Patriots controlled the distance events from the meet’s outset, with individual titles going to Ford Noack (800m), Huff (1,500m), Conner Benson (5,000m) and Alex Wilson (10,000m).
Huff, Matthew Markert and Derek Blain took the top three spots in the 3000m steeplechase and Preston Mizner finished second in the 400m hurdles.
Christian Kearney finished a close second in both the long jump and the triple jump.
Other top-three finishes from UT Tyler came in the men’s 4x400 where the team of Patrick Colwell, Patrick Beach, Mizner and Noack finished third, and in the 4x100 relay where Colwell, Travis Crafton, Beach and Kearney also finished third. Colwell placed third in the 400m as well.
Crafton had a third place finish in the 110-hurdles and Benson placed second in the 10,000m run. Wilson and Markert were second and third, respectivley, in the 5,000m run, while Cesar Rodriguez came in third in the 800m.
As a team, the Patriots put up 240 total points, more than 100 points ahead of Concordia’s 131.
ASC Men’s Track and Field Awards
Coach of the Year — Bob Helper, Texas-Tyler
Outstanding Track Athlete of the Year — Nick Huff, Texas-Tyler
Outstanding Field Athlete of the Year — Justin Gray, Hardin-Simmons
Oustanding Freshmen Co-Athlete of the Year — Justin Gonzalez, Sul Ross State and Richard Snyder, Concordia
High Point Athlete of the Year — Buck Thompson, Texas-Tyler
Sportsmanship Athlete of the Year — Lee Caruthers, Sul Ross State
All-ASC (14 or more points in ASC Meet)
Conner Benson, Texas-Tyler
Shane Brogdon, MC
Travis Crafton, Texas-Tyler
Matt Denman, CTX
Derek Footer, HSU
Justin Gonzalez, CTX
Justin Gray, HSU
Nicklas Huff, Texas-Tyler
Christian Kearney, Texas-Tyler
Matthew Markert, Texas-Tyler
Cedric Miller, HSU
Michael Normand, CTX
Matt Ruhe, CTX
Richard Snyder, SRSU
Demarcus Speight, MC
Buck Thompson, Texas-Tyler
Alexander Wilson, Texas-Tyler