Viotto Captures Shot Put and Discus Titles to Lead Blue Hens to Fourth Place Team Finish at CAA Track & Field Championships
May 7, 2011
File Photo Courtesy of UD Photo Services
RICHMOND, Va. -- University of Delaware senior thrower John Viotto (at right) and sophomore sprinter Vicky Caruso each had a hand in winning two titles to lead the Blue Hens on the final day of the Colonial Athletic Association Men’s and Women’s Track & Field Championships Saturday at Virginia Commonwealth’s SportsBacker Stadium.
Viotto captured both the shot put and discus individual titles on Saturday to lead the Delaware men to a fourth place finish in the team standings while Caruso won the 400 meters, teamed with Nijah Dupiche, Kayla Hennessy, and Kristi Cox to win the 4 x 400 meter relay, and placed second in the 200 meters.
The fourth place finish was the best for the UD men since 2008 while the fifth place showing was the highest for the UD women since a fifth place finish in 2002. The UD women finished a mere 10 points out of second place. The meet marked the final conference championship appearance for the UD men as the program will be reclassified as a club sport following this season.
Viotto upped his career outdoor victory total to 14, including nine this season, while Caruso increased her outdoor win total to 22. They both become the first athletes in UD history to win multiple titles at the CAA Championships since Delaware joined the league in 2002. Viotto became the first UD men’s track & field performer to win two events at the conference meet since Mike DiGennaro won both the 3,000 meter steeplechase and 5,000 meters at the 2000 America East meet.
George Mason won its second straight men’s team title with 239 points followed by UNC Wilmington, Northeastern, Delaware, William & Mary, VCU, and Georgia State. Georgia State ended William & Mary’s four-year reign as women’s team champions as the Panthers won the title with 133 points followed by George Mason, Northeastern, James Madison, Delaware, UNC Wilmington, VCU, William & Mary, and Towson.
It was a successful championship for both Delaware squads as the men brought home three titles, were second in two events, and third in two other competitions. The Blue Hen women captured three first place finishes, were runner-up in two events, and posted three third place showings. Delaware athletes also set nine new school or freshman records as well.
Viotto set a new school record by winning the shot put with a school record toss of 56-3 1/4 and capturing the discus throw with a heave of 165-2. His throw in the shot put broke the longstanding UD record of 55-7 set by Steve Hansen back in 1986.
In addition for the UD men, Jim Schwendtner won his second straight hammer throw title with a toss of 188-8, Andy Weaver was second in the 5,000 meter run (14:27.68), Ross Shober was second in the decathlon with a school-record point total of 6,376, breaking his own school mark of 5,959 set earlier this spring, Nick Alexander was third in the shot put (50-10), Connor Whitesel was third in the hammer (179-4), Ryan Beach was fourth in the discus (152-9), Tim Byrne was fourth in the shot put (50-4), Joe Passalaqua was fourth in the pole vault (14-9), and the 4 x 400 meter relay team of Vinny Fronczkowski, Tyreece Clayton, Steve Forgo, and Justin Molligan was fourth (3:18.75).
Caruso teamed with Dupiche, Hennessy, and Cox to win the 4 x 400m meter relay in 3:42.55, giving Delaware its first ever CAA relay title. Caruso also won the 400 meters in a time of 53.87, breaking the old Delaware record of 54.34 set last season by Cristine Marquez, and placed second in the 200 meters with a time of 24.17.
Also for the UD women, Jillian Seamon won her second straight CAA javelin title on Friday with a throw of 134-9, Lindsay Prettyman finished second in the 800 meters in 2:13.71, breaking the UD record of 2:13.84 by Erin Gemmill in 2002, Alana Pantale was third in the discus with a UD freshman record of 142-0 and fourth in the discus with a toss of 42-4, Hennessy was third in the 400 meter hurdles with a time of 1:00.42, breaking her own UD record of 1:01.57 set in 2008, Dupiche was fourth in the 400 meters (56.65), and Jen Watunya was fourth in the 10,000 meters (36:23.87)
Other record breakers for the UD women were Latoya James, who placed fifth in the 100 meter hurdles with a time of 14.15, breaking the UD record of 14.25 by Hennessy in 2008; Courtney Sniscak, who broke her own UD freshman record in the hammer with a toss of 161-10 to place sixth; and Paige Morris, who placed eighth in the long jump with a new UD freshman mark of 18-9 3/4.
VCU’s Quina Fourtune was named the Women’s Outstanding Track Performer while Georgia State’s Yolanda Berryhill earned the Women’s Outstanding Field Performer. On the men’s side, George Mason’s swept the awards as Rachaunn Ruffin was named the Outstanding Track Performer and Lavell Handy was picked as the Outstanding Field Performer.
Final Men’s Team Standings: 1. George Mason - 239; 2. UNC Wilmington - 143.5; 3. Northeastern - 125.5; 4. Delaware - 112; 5. William & Mary - 109; 6. VCU - 67; 7. Georgia State - 14.
Delaware Men’s Finishers: 1st Place - John Viotto, shot put (56-3 1/4; UD Record), discus (165-2); Jim Schwendtner, hammer (188-8); 2nd Place - Andy Weaver, 5,000m (14:27.68); Ross Shober, decathlon (6,376 points; UD Record); 3rd Place - Nick Alexander, shot put (50-10); Connor Whitesel, hammer (179-4); 4th Place - Ryan Beach, discus (152-9); Tim Byrne, shot put (50-4); 4 x 400m Relay (Vinny Fronczkowski, Tyreece Clayton, Steve Forgo, Justin Molligan), 3:18.75; Joe Passalaqua, pole vault (14-9); 5th Place - Joe Passalaqua, decathlon (6,161 points); Bobby Kennedy, shot put (48-11), discus (150-1); Ryan Braunagel, hammer (173-4); 6th Place - 4 x 100m Relay (Tim Kutchen, Tyreece Clayton, Vinny Fronczkowski, Ross Shober), 42.95; Dan Feeney, 3,000m steeplechase (9:44.01); Andrue Smith, 110m hurdles (15.46); Kendall Poole, long jump (22-6 1/4); George Vallone, pole vault (14-3 1/2); 7th Place - Jeremy Simkins, decathlon (5,527 points); Andrue Smith, 400m hurdles (57.07); 9th Place - Jim Schwendtner, discus (137-9); Matt Hinkle, javelin (149-6); Bobby Kennedy, hammer (164-2), Aidan Galasso, 10,000m (32:45.68); Vinny Fronczkowski, 400m (49.43); 10th Place - Tim Byrne, discus (136-6); Mike Tait, 800m (1:57.81); 11th Place - John Farelli, shot put (45-2 1/2); Joe Grieco, 1,500m (3:59.69); Ryan Beach, hammer (144-10), Jeremy Simkins, 110m hurdles (16.28); Justin Molligan, 400m (50.53); 12th Place - John Farelli, discus (132-7); Steve Forgo, 400m (51.25); Vinny Fronczkowski, 200m (22.06); 13th Place - Ryan Braunagel, discus (129-5); Tyreece Clayton, 400m (52.52); James Townsend, 1,500m (4:01.36); 15th Place - Jim Schwendtner, shot put (42-0 1/2), Nick Alexander, discus (124-11); 16th Place - Tyreece Clayton, 200m (22.35); 17th Place - Tim Kutchen, 100m (11.24); 19th Place - Justin Molligan, 200m (22.76); 20th Place - Tim Kutchen, 200m (22.96).