U-M Posts Seven Event Wins at Silverston Invitational
Stephen Sykes

Feb. 22, 2014

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Site: Ann Arbor, Mich. (U-M Indoor Track Building)
Event: Silverston Invitational
U-M Team Result: Non-scoring
Attendance: 1,014
Next U-M Event: Fri-Sat., Feb. 28-March 1 -- at Big Ten Indoor Championships (Geneva, Ohio), 10 a.m.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The University of Michigan men's track and field team finished the regular-season portion of the indoor season with a strong performance at the annual Silverston Invitational on Saturday (Feb. 22) at the U-M Indoor Track Building. The Wolverines won seven events and were runner-up in an additional four events in the meet.

U-M received a stellar performance from sophomore Stephen Sykes (Litchfield, Mich./Litchfield) in the high jump. Sykes won the event by clearing the bar at 2.1 meters (6-10.75 ft.), which is almost three inches better than his previous best of 2.03m (6-8 ft.).

The Wolverines continued their strong showing in the field event as senior Patrick Cochran (Erie, Pa./McDowell), competing unattached, won the long jump with a personal-best leap of 7.28 meters (23-10.75). Sophomore Thomas Sullivan (Reno, Nev./Galena) finished runner-up in the pole vault by clearing 4.47 meters (14-08.00 ft.).

In the shot put, the Wolverines finished in second and third place behind Michigan State's Antonio James. Junior/sophomore Derek Sievers (Byron Center, Mich./Byron Center) finished second with a throw of 17.82m (58-05.75 ft.) on his very first attempt of the day. Senior/junior Justin Gaumer (Holly, Mich./Holly) was a close third with a successful attempt of 17.25m (56-07.25), a career best for the third-year performer.

Senior Erick Gavin (Chicago Heights, Ill./Marian Catholic) won the 60m hurdles with a career-best time. Gavin clocked 7.98 seconds to win the event and in the process lowered his personal-best mark, breaking his previous mark of 8.01 set at the Big Ten Indoor Championships last year (Feb. 22, 2013).

Michigan track alumni Adam Harris clocked the best time in the 60 meter dash at 6.78 seconds. Harris is the Michigan and indoor track building record holder in the event and is currently running for his home country of Guyana. Junior/sophomore Codie Nolan (Morenci, Mich./Adrian) and sophomore/freshman Chris Maye (Union City, Mich./Union City) placed third and fourth, respectively, in the event with career-best times. Nolan shaved one one-hundreths off his personal best with a time of 6.90, and Maye finished with a time of 6.93 seconds. Nolan finished second in the 200 meter dash with a time of 22.32 seconds.

Running unattached at the meet, senior Ali Arastu (Northville, Mich./Northville) and junior Philip Washington (West Bloomfield, Mich./West Bloomfield) finished 1-2 in the 400-meter dash with times of 48.01 and 48.94, respectively. The pair was followed by three Eastern Michigan competitors and then three Michigan teammates who finished sixth through eighth in the event.

In the 800 meter dash, junior/sophomore Zac Miklja (Rochester, Mich./Avondale) won the event (1:55.84) by more than two seconds over the next closest competitor.

The Wolverines swept the top four places in the mile. Junior/sophomore Jeff Sattler (Byron Center, Mich./Byron Center) won the event with a closing lap that featured him going from third to first against his teammates. Sattler posted a personal best time of 4:08.23. He was followed by Senior/junior James Yau (Troy, Mich./Troy) at 4:10.01, senior/junior Nathan Karr (Ann Arbor, Mich./Pioneer) at 4:10.60 and junior Ben Reed (Hemlock, Mich./Midland) at 4:18.12.

Fifth-year senior Ethan Dennis (Grand Rapids, Mich./Grandville) placed second in the weight throw to finish the competition. Dennis recorded a throw of 20.09 meters to finish as a runner-up to Michigan State's Antonio James (21.03m).

At the outset of the meet, the track and field programs recognized the achievements of their seniors. The men's program will have seven competitors finish their careers this year: Ethan Dennis, Austin DeWildt, Erick Gavin, Ed Hur, Bradley James, Troy Sneller and Herman Washington.

The Wolverines will begin the championship portion of the indoor season at the Big Ten Indoor Championships on Friday and Saturday (Feb. 28-March 1) at the SPIRE Institute in Geneva, Ohio. Competition will begin each day at 10 a.m. [ Big Ten Championship Central ]

Patrick Cochran - Long Jump (23-10.75 ft. 7.28m)
Justin Gaumer - Shot Put (56-07.25 ft. 17.25m)
Erick Gavin - 60m Hurdles (7.98)
Codie Nolan - 60m Dash (6.90)
Chris Maye - 60m Dash (6.93)
Jeff Sattler - Mile (4:08.23)
Stephen Sykes - High Jump (6-10.75 ft. 2.1m)
James Yau - Mile (4:10.01)


U-M Senior Sprinter Erick Gavin
On his performance in the 60m hurdles ... "I've had two really good meets in a row. It was important to get under eight seconds heading into the Big Ten Indoor Championship. In the 60, it's important to get off to a good start, which I did today, because there's no room for error indoors. I like where I'm at heading into the championships."

Michigan Head Coach Jerry Clayton
On Stephen Sykes' performance in the high jump ... "We had a good meet overall today. There were a lot of personal bests achieved. We have a lot of positives heading into Big Ten's. I think our guys were really competing well and were focused on doing their best and that showed today."

On Stephen Sykes and his performance the past couple of meets ... "Stephen has really come along and today he performed really well. He continues to improve. We have changed Stephen's approach to the bar, moving him back about six feet while maintaining the same amount of strides, which has him coming in with more momentum. If Stephen keeps this up he will be breaking the world record soon. We know that you can't keep adding multiple inches every meet so our goal will be to build consistency in performance. We want them to come out and be able to perform at their best each meet."

On his expectations heading into the Big Tens ... "We need to focus on trying to perform our very best each opportunity we have to compete against competition. We aren't one of the strongest teams in the Big Ten but we are making strides. All I can ask is that we compete hard, make progress and do your very best. Our goal is to be performing at our best in the post-season."

Contact: Whitney Dixon (whitdix@umich.edu)