CORAL GABLES, FLA. – The Duke track and field team finished the ACC Outdoor Track and Field on a high note as the Blue Devils collected a pair of ACC titles as well multiple All-ACC honors to close out the annual championships at Cobb Stadium.
Duke finished in seventh in the women’s team standings with 51.5 points. The Blue Devil men finished in a tie for ninth with 41.5 points.
After finishing in third in the 400m at the ACC Indoor Championships, Steven Solomon made sure he took home the title at the outdoor edition. Solomon, who broke the Duke record in the preliminary heats on Friday, blazed to a time of 45.50 to outrace the competition by more than half a second. Solomon becomes the first Blue Devil to finish the 400m in under 46 seconds. It is the first ACC crown for the graduate student and is the tenth fastest time in the country this season.
“Biggest story of the day is Steven winning the ACC title and setting a new school record doing it,” said director of track and field Norm Ogilvie. “It was a world class performance. Now that he has an ACC title, he’s going to set his sights on qualifying for the NCAA Championships.”
Leading off the day was the men’s javelin throw and for the second straight year, a Blue Devil claimed the crown. On his very first throw of the competition, Kiegan Lenihan launched the javelin a personal-best 221-2 (67.42). That throw stood as the competition’s best and earned the sophomore from Tarrytown, N.Y., his first career ACC title as well as first-team All-ACC honors. Lenihan is now third all-time at Duke.
“Kiegan threw a lifetime best on his very first throw and the very first throw of the competition,” Ogilvie said. “He put it out there and a couple of guys chased after him, but no one improved on him. It was a big 13 points from Kiegan and Michael.”
Maddy Price earned All-ACC recognition in a pair of events. First, the senior from Hillsborough, Calif., broke the Duke record in the 400m, racing to a personal-best time of 52.30. Price finished in second place, adding to her silver medal in the 400m at the ACC Indoor Championships. Price followed it up with a fourth place finish in the 200m, crossing the finish line in 23.42. She earns first-team All-ACC honors in the 400m and second-team in the 200m.
“The MVP on the women’s side was Maddy,” added Ogilvie. “Opening with the second place and the school record in the 400m and following it with fourth in the 200m.”
Joining Price in the 200m final was Kethlin Campbell. Campbell finished right behind her teammate, clocking a time of 23.55 to place fifth. Campbell earns second-team All-ACC honors for her efforts.
In the women’s triple jump, Domonique Panton sat on the cusp of reaching the finals heading into her third attempt. Duke’s record holder in the event, Panton came through with a leap of 41-11.50 (12.79) to move her up to fourth place. That is where Panton finished, earning second-team All-ACC honors for the first time at the Outdoor Championships.
With a second-lap push, Matt Wisner moved up to finish fifth in the men’s 800m. Wisner was eighth in the standings halfway through the race and clocked a final 400m split of 54.87 to finish in 1:49.19. It is the second time Wisner has finished under 1:50 in his outdoor career and he leaves Coral Gables with second-team All-ACC honors.
“Wisner ran really well and he continues to kick as well as anyone,” Ogilvie said. “He was in eighth place at the 400 and then kicked by three guys on the last lap. He’s still one of the top half-milers in the NCAA East region and has a great shot at qualifying for the NCAA Championship.”
Also scoring points in the men’s javelin throw was Michael Marsack. Like Lenihan, Marsack had his best throw of the day in his first attempt, reaching 212-1 (64.65). The Stroudsburg, Pa., native finished in sixth place and earned second-team All-ACC honors.
In the women’s 800m, Brittany Aveni clocked her second-fastest time of the season. Aveni crossed the finish line 2:07.41 to finish in seventh place.
Duke will next head into NCAA competition. First up will be the NCAA East Preliminary Round in Tampa, Fla. That will begin on Thursday, May 24 and will run through Saturday, May 26.