Volume 91, Issue 84
Tuesday, March 10, 1998
Western men are creme de la creme
WE'RE SO FAR AHEAD I BET WE COULD DROP IT THIS TIME. Mustang track star Adrian Jordan [left] accepts the baton from Roland Acheampong with perfect execution at the OUA track championships. The men won the event and the meet.
By Geoff Robins
Most members of the 1997-98 Western men's track and field team were not even born in 1973 the last time the Mustang men won the Ontario championships. But that's ancient history since they defeated the Windsor Lancers at York University this weekend to end a 25-year drought that has plagued the team.
Captain Adrian Jordan led Western by example, capturing three gold medals and one silver. In the 300-metre sprint, Jordan managed to stride to victory even though he was not in the fastest heat, trashing a previous personal best by almost a half second.
For Jordan, the 300-metres continued his momentum from the golden 4x200-metre win on Friday night and the silver in the 60-metre race on Saturday morning.
The championship came down to the last race of the meet, the 4x400-metre relay where Jordan was joined by co-captain Roland Acheampong and rookie Alex Pablo, who inched out the veteran Acheampong in the 600-metres by .07 seconds only two hours earlier. Tony Ogini led things off with a personal best 49.9 seconds en route to the win.
Mustang coach Bob Vigars was ecstatic about the victory. "It's incredible," he said. "I've been looking for it for a long time. In the last few years we have had some pretty good teams, we fought a good fight, but we always came up short." Vigars has led many Cross Country teams to championships in recent years but the men's track title has been elusive.
The men's distance squad was not at full strength with the absence of Guy Shultz and Jim Wardle, who sprained his ankle two weeks ago. Shultz, even with a torn meniscus, was able to pull out silver medals in the 1500-metres, 3000-metres and the 4x800-metre relay. Mike Lander, who had joined Shultz on the relay team Friday night, ran away with gold in the 1000-metres Saturday afternoon.
The Mustang women's team went into the meet ranked third in Ontario and managed to keep their place. Shot-putter Mary Ann Phillips sat in third place before her last throw of the competition. In dramatic style she heaved the shot 13.96 metres to win the event. Phillips, who has been hampered this season by a torn anterior cruciate ligament, has still managed to medal in every competition this season.
The 60-metre hurdles were prosperous for the 'Stangs with Val Moran placing fourth and qualifying for the nationals while Maisie Hahn took the gold. Hahn and Moran were also members of the 4x200-metre team that captured bronze Friday night. "It's kinda been too good to be true," said Hahn, who was also a member of the 4x400-metre team which finished fourth but still made CIAU qualifier standard.
Both teams will now prepare for the national championships to be held in Windsor's St. Denis Centre this weekend.
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