April 18 – SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. – Continuing their preparation for the Presidents’ Athletic Conference Championships which are only one week away, Bethany College juniors Umar Moore (Coraopolis, Pa./Moon) and Kyle Minger (Richmond, Ohio/Edison Local) traveled to Slippery Rock, Pa. to compete against stiff competitions at the Slippery Rock Invitational. The result; two combined victories, four new school records, and the second-best mark in the long jump in all of Division III this season.
For Moore, the junior field athlete posted the best mark of his career in the long jump, while also notching two top-two finishes against competitors from Divisions I, II and III. Moore first competed in the long jump competition, where he walked away with the win in a field of 33 competitors with a distance of 23-10. The mark not only became the second-best leap in the Nation in terms of qualifications for the NCAA National Championships, but it also broke a Bethany school mark that has stood for 89 years.
The distance for Moore took down the longest standing record at Bethany, not only in track & field, but in every sport on Bethany’s campus. The previous mark of 23-7, which all athletes in the past eight decades have failed to achieve until Moore, was set by Virgil Elliott back in 1926.
For the record, the two-time All-American broke a school mark that was set before the Great Depression. It was a mark that was earned in the same year that the late Joe Paterno, Queen Elizabeth II, and Marilyn Monroe were all born and was as old as both Whinnie the Pooh and Route 66.
Along with his performance in the long jump, Moore broke his own record in the triple jump, posting a leap of 47-0.25. The distance gave him a second-place honor, while also breaking his own school mark of 45-11.25 which he set back in 2013.
For as good as Moore performed in the field, Minger did just as well on the track on Saturday afternoon. The junior sprinter proved what he can do against tough competition, capturing two top-ten finishes, including a victory in the 400-meter dash.
In the 400, Minger competed against 26 other competitors, running in the first heat of the four-heat event. He proved to be the fastest in his heat, posting a school-record mark of 48.73. That mark also held up through the next four heats, giving Minger the victory over athletes from all Divisions as well as runners from the NAIA.
Not only was his mark a school record and good enough for first, but Minger also notched the 23rd fastest time in all of Division III.
Minger also ran well in the 200-meter dash, posting a ninth-place mark with a time of 22.05. That time also set a new Bethany best, breaking Herman Nuckols’ 2006 record of 22.10 which was set back in 2006.
“Both Umar and Kyle performed at a very high level today,” commented head coach Andy Upton. “The whole purpose of today’s meet was to get two of our best athletes a chance to compete against good competition and have them pushed to a limit where we could get the very best performances in hopes they could get one step closer to qualifying for the NCAA Champisonships.
“Both athletes took advantage of the opportunity that was given to them. I knew they were capable of great marks, but they surpassed my expectations today. They are both very special athletes, and I believe they are peaking at the right time as we head into (PAC) Championships next week.”
Moore, Minger and the rest of the Bison track & field squads will be back in action on Friday and Saturday, April 24 and 25 as they travel to Grove City, Pa. to compete in the PAC Championships.