"The weather was pretty rough all day, with rain in the first part of the meet and extremely high winds in the second part, but we still saw a bunch of great performances out of our team," said Lee head coach Caleb Morgan.
"We used the meet as an opportunity to get in some faster work," added Morgan. "Everybody was dropping down in distances to shorter events and several were doubling back to a second event. A lot of times that means your team may not have a great showing, but that's not what happened today."
The women's team had 14 individuals participate in eight events and placed eight athletes in the top 10 of their event.
Ashley Matthews gave the Lady Flames their lone win of the day. Matthews posted a time of 18:51.22 in the 5,000-meter run and was nearly nine seconds faster than runner-up Shea Spicher (Shorter).
"Ashley winning the 5,000-meter and running a personal best was definitely the highlight of the day for the women's team," said Morgan. "She executed her race plan perfectly, running controlled for the first four kilometers, and then she put a 10-second gap over second place in the final kilometer. It was a lot of fun to watch and I'm really proud of the improvements she's made over the past year. That was definitely one of the best races she's ever run, including her All-American performance in the NAIA marathon last spring."
Ode Fulutudilu finished 11th in the 100-meter dash with a time of 13.09. Shorter University's Lakeisha Spikes was the winner at 12.16.
Fulutudilu was joined by Emily Bryan, Storyie Miller and Brianna Prugh in the 200-meter dash. Fulutudilu was 20th (27.54) in a race won by Giselle Webb (25.11) of Shorter. Bryan was 27th (28.21), Miller 31st (28.47) and Prugh 35th (29.19).
Jessica Childers placed fifth in the 800-meter run with a mark of 2:25.44. Prugh was right behind at 2:25.73 (sixth). Miller was ninth (2:27.64) and Rachel Riel finished with a time of 2:34.29 (13th).
Riel ran the 1,500-meter in 5:21.13 to finish 11th, while Danielle King was 18th (5:45.02). Bryan and Emily Arnesen also took on the 400-meter hurdles. Bryan was fourth (1:09.52) and Arnesen came in eighth (1:13.20).
Several Lady Flames took on the shot put and discus throw. Kayla Gash was fifth in the discus with a throw of 34.08 meters and posted a distance of 8.98 meters (ninth) in the shot put.
Bethany Metz, Alexis Hewitt, Cayce Bryan and Elizabeth Sillcocks performed in the shot put. Metz was 11th (7.15 meters), Hewitt was 12th (5.77 meters), Bryan placed 13th (5.08 meters) and Sillcocks was 14th (5.02 meters).
The Flames entered three events and placed seven athletes in the top 10 of two total events.
Five of the Flames' top 10 finishes came in the 800-meter run. Emmanuel Kipchumba placed second behind Shorter's Josiah Jenkins (1:56.33) with a time of 1:57.32. Terris Elliott was sixth (1:59.78), Justin Knuth was seventh (2:00.28), Mike Walker placed eighth (2:00.50) and Camden Perez rounded out the top 10 with a 2:01.06 mark. Patrick Shultz and Adam Gullette recorded times of 2:09.67 (24th) and 2:10.50 (25th), respectively.
"The highlight of the day for the men's team was the 1,500-meter run, where we saw five Lee runners place in the top 15 overall," said Morgan. "That really says a lot to me about the depth of our program and the way our training has been going."
Walker finished the 1,500-meter in 3:59.27 to place third. Elliott was right behind in fourth (4:00.65). Perez crossed the finish line in 11th (4:09.64). Keenen Hindes was 14th (4:14.32) and Shultz was 15th (4:14.74).
Blake Smith, Joseph Crook, Zach Orrison and Tim Yates gave the Flames nine runners in the top 49. Smith was 17th (4:17.72), Crook finished 24th (4:22.50), Orrison was 46th (4:49.46) and Yates had a time of 4:58.94 (49th).
Adam Tauzer took on the shot put and recorded a distance of 4.57 meters. He placed 13th in the event.
"It was a really positive day," said Morgan. "It's still early for us. We don't hope to be running fast for another month, but we saw five personal bests on a day when it wasn't going to be easy to throw down fast times."