Meet Recap: 2022 NAIA Outdoor T&F Championships

Champions were crowned at the 2022 NAIA Outdoor Track & Field Championships, which were held at Mickey Miller Blackwell Stadium in Gulf Shores, Alabama!

From The USTFCCCA InfoZone: National Championships Central

Life (Ga.) won its first men’s crown since 2000, while British Columbia won its first since 2019 – the last time the Thunderbirds competed in this meet.

This was the 70th edition of the men’s meet and 41st for the women.

2022 NAIA Outdoor T&F Championships – Final Standings

Men’s Team
Women’s Team
#4 Life (Ga.)
#1 British Columbia
#2 Southeastern (Fla.)
#2 Indiana Tech
#1 British Columbia
#4 William Carey (Miss.)
#6 Saint Mary (Kan.)
#3 Concordia (Neb.)
#12 Madonna (Mich.)
#6 Life (Ga.)

Men’s Recap

An incredibly tight men’s team race found Life (Ga.) winning for the first time since 2000. Back then, the Running Eagles were led by punishing distance runners, but this year they were fueled by scoring in events of 400 meters or less.

Life’s Phemelo Matlhabe led the way, sweeping the 100 and 200 with PRs of 10.08 and 20.48, respectively.  He also ran the second leg of the Running Eagles’ winning 4×100 team, which clocked 40.21. He was also on the Life 4×400 squad that finished fifth, giving him 23.5 of Life’s 52 winning team points.

Runner-up Southeastern (Fla.) finished with 48 points, including a winning performance from Glenn Rodgers in the 110 hurdles in 13.83. That led a 1-3-5 finish by the Fire that included Davonte Vanterpool and Darion Carter.

British Columbia finished third with 39 points. The Thunderbirds got 10 points from Rowan Hamilton in the hammer throw as he returned for the first time since winning as a freshman in 2019. Hamilton launched the hammer and a chain a meet-record 74.21m (243-5), breaking a mark that had stood since 1992.

Two other individuals repeated championship performances, both from last year – Senzo Sokhela of Westmont (Calif.) in the 800 in 1:51.04 and Lee Walburn of Carroll (Mont.) in decathlon with 7225 points.

Women’s Recap

British Columbia put away the women’s team title early with its winning total of 138 points, but defending champ Indiana Tech surpassed its winning total of last year with 94 points.

The Thunderbirds won five titles, including four individual events with four different athletes. UBC was most dominant in the 5000 race walk, chalking up 27 points as Olivia Lundman led a 1-2-4-5 finish for the Thunderbirds.

Also winning for UBC was Hailey Kjaer in the javelin at 47.65m (156-4) in leading a 1-3-4 finish (21 points). Jenna Melanson led a 1-4 finish for the Thunderbirds in the steeplechase, while Glynis Sim added a victory in the 5000. UBC also won the 4×800 relay in 8:57.70.

Indiana Tech racked up four wins – Lisa Voyles in the 800 and Erica Xayarath in the high jump, along with the 4×100 and 4×400 relay teams.

Two athletes won a pair of events – Raheema Westfall of Wayland Baptist (Texas) in the 100 (11.43) and 200 (22.98, a meet record) and Joy Abu of William Carey (Miss.) in the 100 hurdles (13.48) and 400 hurdles (59.34).

Marian (Ind.) also earned a pair of victories with Jai-Lyn Norwood (triple jump) and Arriana Benjamin (shot put).