LEXINGTON, Ky. – The Belmont men's track and field team concluded the Jim Green Invitational with more solid performances on Saturday. The Bruins saw a school record fall plus five more top-15 finishes at the University of Kentucky.
Leading the way for the Bruins was senior Corey Claiborne (Milton, Ga.), who notched a new school record in the shot put with a mark of 17.48m to take fifth in the event. His toss now stands atop the Ohio Valley Conference as the best in the young season.
"We competed well, but nothing compared to what we will accomplish for the rest of the season, both individually and as a team," said Claiborne. "Other OVC teams should be worried."
On the track, senior Drake Mitchell (Nashville, Tenn.) advanced to the semifinals in the 60m Hurdles before narrowly missing a spot in the finals. Freshman Finn Birnie (St. Austell, United Kingdom) made his collegiate indoor debut in the Mile, recording a top-25 finish. His time of 4:21.23 moves him into the top-five in the OVC in the event. Also making moves in the OVC rankings after their performances were sophomore Elijah Shepard (Danville, Calif.) in the 400m and senior Christian Gonzales (Orinda, Calif.) in the 800m.
"The race was really fun, a real solid start to the season," Birnie said. "The race started slowly, so I'm pleased with how I finished. Plenty more to come this season."
"Overall, it was a solid season opener," said Associate Head Coach Cameron Harvey. "I honestly didn't know what to expect with the team only getting in four days of practice before the meet. But they showed that they were ready to compete and put some solid performances out there.
"The ladies got off to a great start with two school records Friday. Smashing both records soundly definitely shows what direction our ladies team is going. The guys side had less big performances, but it was great to see Corey open up the season with a PR/school record after red shirting last season."
Belmont returns to action next weekend at the Vanderbilt Indoor Invitational, January 17-18.
6. Noah Grimm 1.99m
6. Noah Grimm 1.99m
5. Corey Claiborne 17.48m
60m Dash Prelims
38. Griffin Hodge 7.30
13. Sheppard, Kieffer, Mitchell, Barnhart