Feb. 3, 2013
WEST POINT, N.Y. – Army won seven of the 11 running events on the afternoon, but Navy used a dominant jumping contingent to capture the annual indoor Star Meet, 93-88. The Midshipmen tallied 32 points in four jumping events to edge the Black Knights for the second consecutive year.
Army finished 1-2 in four events on the day but Navy earned the two best marks in five events which proved to be the difference.
“That was an insurmountable amount of points for us to make up,” said Army head coach Troy Engle. “We did had some kids with good performances in the field events, like going 1-2 in the shot put, but it’s a matter of us trying to find a way to break up all of Navy’s 1-2 finishes.
“I don’t remember the last time we went 1-2 in the 3,000 meters and broke Navy up in the mile. There were some unbelievable hard-fought events. Even events where we didn’t win the point swing on, our kids competed with phenomenal heart. Today was a great testament to our team’s character and toughness.”
Army outscored Navy on the track, 64-51, including the top two times in the 500-meter dash, 800m and 3,000m. Freshman Stevyn Spees captured the 500-meter title with an IC4A Championship-qualifying time of 1:04.96, while junior Chris Smith was runner-up in 1:04.97. Freshman Mitch Dutton and sophomore Clyde Wilson recorded a pair of personal bests in the 800m, placing first (1:55.66) and second (1:56.03), respectively. Sophomore Cody Barger, competing in his first Army-Navy Star Meet, flew to a winning time in the 3,000 meters of 8:22.99, before junior Ricardo Galindo placed second in 8:25.73.
Senior Scott Geary was Army’s lone winner in the field events, leading the charge in the shot put with a heave of 15.54 meters. Geary’s throw was the best by a Black Knight this season and was followed closely by No. 2 finisher Shane Jones (15.51m).
Junior Jason Wilkes and senior Kyler Martin also had successful showings on the afternoon. Wilkes won the 60-meter dash for the second straight season, crossing the line in the eighth-fastest time in Academy history, 7.00 seconds. Martin claimed the 60-meter hurdles title with the third-fastest time in program history, 8.03 seconds.
With the meet already decided, barring disqualifications, Army swept both relay events for the first time under Engle’s watch. Spees and Smith teamed with Patrick Taylor and Matt Green in the 4x400, crossing the line in 3:19.15 to edge Navy by over three seconds. In the 4x800, sophomores Clyde Wilson, Andreas Kellas and Nathan Fisher and senior Mark Castelli bested Navy by three seconds with a time of 7:54.59.
Navy last won back-to-back indoor Star Meets in 2007-08 before Army reeled off six consecutive indoor and outdoor wins. The Midshipmen pulled ahead in the all-time indoor series, 27-25-2, while all Star Meets, indoor and outdoor, are now even at 69-69-2.
Army will have one final tune-up meet before the postseason begins. The Black Knights will travel to The Armory for the Lafayette-Rider Winter Games on Feb. 8. Events are scheduled to begin at 4 p.m.