Men’s track finishes second at UAA Championship

| Managing Sports Editor

A 4x400M relay team of senior Marcus-Jay Wilkes, junior Alex Djetto, senior Jackson Cox, and graduate student Arthur Santoro on a podium after their first-place finish at the UAA championship. (Photo Courtesy of the Athletics Department)

Over a rainy, haily, and snowy weekend, the Washington University in St. Louis men’s track and field team put in a string of impressive performances to finish second place at the UAA Outdoor Championships with 165.5 points. Carnegie Mellon won with 171.5 points.

The Bears’ impressive performances were led by the likes of senior Aboyomi Awoyomi, who won the triple jump crown by hitting a mark of 14.31 meters. A 4x400M relay team of senior Marcus-Jay Wilkes, junior Alex Djetto, senior Jackson Cox, and graduate student Arthur Santoro took home the relay crown, finishing the race with a time of 3:17.29.

“The win is a bit bittersweet, seeing as we weren’t able to take first overall on the men’s side and because this is my last UAA conference,” Awoyomi wrote to Student Life. “However, I’m proud of the work that I and everyone that competed as part of WashU today and that’s all I can ask for.”

Coming off a UAA Indoor track & field title earlier this year, the men’s team was plagued by injuries throughout this outdoor season that saw them lose some of their best competitors this weekend. Most notably, All-American hurdler and senior Gio Alfred has been out with a concussion since sustaining the injury two weeks ago.

“Gio Alfred — hurdler — got a concussion two weeks ago. He has not gotten out of protocol, [and] Drew Sidamon-Eristoff couldn’t run the 800M,” head coach Jef Stiles said. “But those are things when we came we knew that. Other teams I’m sure have injuries, they have illnesses, or whatever it might be. Carnegie beat us with who we had, and that was our best team on the day. So has it impacted [us]? Absolutely. We did the best we could and we’re really proud of the output.” 

Despite the second-place result, the season is yet to be over. The Bears have a few meets left in their calendar before they pack and head to Rochester, New York in late May, for the NCAA DII Outdoor Track championship weekend.

“My takeaway as I look towards Nationals is to trust myself and my abilities,” Awoyomi said. “My coaches and teammates trust me to go out there and give it my all, so that is what I plan to do.”

“The takeaway is we are in a really good place and we have a lot of people ready to make a push for NCAA,” Stiles said. “Does that mean it’s exciting? Yeah, we got some athletes ready to do good stuff. We’ve got to consider this halfway — this is our fifth meet, and then when you look at the next four-plus, nationals is five. We’re halfway and we’re excited to finish strong.”

Sign up for the email edition

Stay up to date with everything happening at Washington University and beyond.