BETHLEHEM, Pa. - The Stevenson men's indoor track and field team won its first MAC Championship in program history with a school-record 164 points, which was two better than eight-time defending champion Widener. This was also the Mustangs' first ever conference championship of any kind in the programs' history. Head coach Erick Camodeca, who won Men's Coach of the Year honors, is the first coach in program history to receive the honor. This is Camodeca's second conference championship in his coaching career, with the first coming as head coach of York College (Pa.) during the 2011 outdoor season.
Stevenson led by nine points with the high jump being the only event yet to finish. Freshman Clement Onyebadi clinched the conference championship with a decisive sixth-place finish (1.88m), giving the Mustangs three points. Widener's James Burton and Valiant McKee finished tied for third, which gave Widener 10 points and the Mustangs the narrow two-point victory.
The Mustangs also set two more school records on the day.
The 4x400m relay team of juniors Vladhimir Theophile, Matt Riggins, freshman Ritchie Case and junior Kendall Belser took first overall and set a new school mark in the event with a 3.23.33, giving the group All-MAC First Team honors.
Another record was set in the 4x800m relay where sophomore Patrick Watson, freshman Sean Dodson, junior Anthony Mercoli and sophomore Iddriss Iddriss clocked a combined time of 8:15.37, giving them fourth-place overall.
In the 60m dash finals, freshman Dereck Davis clocked a personal-best time of 6.99 seconds, giving him second overall and second team honors. Davis' time is currently fifth in the Mideast region. Belser set a personal best with a time of 7.01 to take third overall, earning third team honors. Sophomore Aaron Holliday ran a personal-best 7.03 to finish fourth, while Riggins ran a 7.05 to take fifth. Junior Morgan Cheatham clocked a 7.22 to take seventh.
Junior Langston Gash clocked a 4:21.6 in the mile to take second place overall in the event, giving him second team honors. Gash also picked up a fourth-place finish in the 3000 with a time of 8:44.61.
Sophomore Iddriss Iddriss just missed setting a new school record in the 800, but did finish second overall with a time of 1:56.93. Iddriss also earned second team honors in the event.
In the 200m dash, Belser earned second team honors after clocking a personal-best time of 22.28 seconds, giving him second overall. Theophile took fifth with a 22.90, while Davis and Cheatham finished seventh and eighth with times of 23.14 and 23.19. Cheatham's time was a personal best.
Theophile earned third team honors after placing third in the 400m dash with a 51.36. Case took fourth with a 51.52.
Freshman Maurice Johnson took third overall in the shot put with a toss of 14.05 meters, which gave him third team honors.
Freshman Dimeon Wright had a hop, skip and jump of 13.78m to take fourth in the triple jump. Onyebadi jumped a personal-best 12.89 to take seventh.
Junior Cooper Smelski took fourth overall in the heptathlon, which was highlighted by second-place finishes in both the pole vault (3.70m) and long jump (6.29m). Freshman Ritchie Case, who won three events on the first day of competition, finished fifth with 3789 points. Freshman Gabe Madro took seventh with 3643 points.
Stevenson finished the competition with 11 All-MAC team honorees.
The Mustangs will continue its historic season at the ECAC Indoor Track and Field Championships, held at The Armory in New York City, starting on Friday, March 2 through Saturday, March 3.
Erick Camodeca (center), here with the Mustang coaching staff, was named Coach of the Year.