North Texas Daily

Lewis leads the way at Red Raider Open in Lubbock

Lewis leads the way at Red Raider Open in Lubbock

February 07
01:27 2012

Zach Claussen / Staff Writer –

The UNT track and field team claimed seven top-five finishes and broke a school record at its best meet of the season Saturday at the Red Raider Open in Lubbock.

Sophomore thrower Charleston Lewis broke his own school record in the weight throw, which he set at last week’s Houston Indoor Invitational, with a toss of 16.78m. Junior thrower Aaron Sirles placed fifth in the weight throw with a toss of 15.79m, but excelled in the men’s shot put after launching a 16.89m toss.

Photo by Jordan Foster / Staff - UNT sophomore and high jumper Shahaf Bareni throws herself over the bar during practice at Fouts Field Stadium Monday.

Sirles’ shot put toss was the second highest in the Sun Belt Conference through the first four weeks of the season. The competition his teammate Lewis provides at practice has helped Sirles become a better thrower now than he was a season ago.

“My first year here, when I didn’t really have anyone to throw against, I couldn’t really measure myself,” Sirles said. “As throwers we have more camaraderie. We always want everyone to throw better because it makes you throw better. It’s a friendly competition.“

Head track and field coach Carl Sheffield said he was pleased with the results of the Red Raider Open despite not having the team’s top two distance runners, senior Sara Dietz and junior Matt Russ, or the team’s sprinters.

“Our goal this weekend was to get our field event guys some reps and some take-offs and throws,” Sheffield said. “The distance runners had been carrying us before, but the field event athletes came through this weekend.”

Other notable results from the field portion of the meet included a second place finish in the women’s high jump (1.7m) for sophomore Shahaf Bareni and a third place finish in the women’s pole vault (3.65 m) for sophomore Sarah Vann.

Freshmen Ellie Arends had the best day of the members of the track team, as she finished sixth in the women’s mile with a time of 5:19.46 minutes.

Coach Sheffield is looking forward to the upcoming meeting in Ames, Iowa this weekend and hopes to see the team continue to improve.

“We got to go up to Iowa this weekend and put our stamp on everything,” Sheffield said. “We were [improving] until last week [at the Houston Indoor Invitational]. It was a little slip but we had a really good week this week, and I think we’ll be good if we can keep everybody healthy.”

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