Henderson, Anato lead SAGU track

Lion squads post strong performances at East Texas Invite

SAGU Athletics
Generic track photo

COMMERCE — The Southwestern Assemblies of God University Lions track team competed at Texas A&M University-Commerce for the East Texas Invite. 

The men's team finished tied for 9th out of 19 teams with 28 points, and the women’s team finished 11th with 11 points. This was the highest-ranking finish for both teams at Commerce.

The men were led by several individuals. Nicholas Henderson broke the school record in his debut of the 400-meter hurdles and met the NAIA "B" Standard qualifying mark. Henderson finished 3rd with a time of 50.19 seconds.

Winston Griffith broke three of his school records (discus, pole vault, and shot put) as he prepares for his second attempt at the decathlon next weekend at the Cactus Cup hosted by Texas A&M-Kingsville. Griffith finished 3rd in pole vault (3.80m) and 9th in shot put (10.92m).

Griffith is the nation's 11th ranked decathlete and is just 6 points shy of hitting the NAIA "A" Standard qualifying mark.

The women traveled a small squad with only two members competing. Gabriella Anato's field event performances led the way for the team to finish in 11th place.  Anato placed 3rd in the Hammer Throw (34.89m), 4th in the Discus (37.40m), and 10th in Javelin Throw (23.53m). Mahogani Collins finished 12th in the 400-meter (1:06.28s) and set a personal best in the 200-meter (28.34s).

Among other SAGU men’s competitors, Damyan Woodward finished 6th in the triple jump (12.47m). Joshua Allen finished 8th in the 100-meter (10.89s) and 200-meter (22.06s), while in the 800-meter Samuel Molina finished 12th with a time of 2.00.38s. Colton Thurman finished 10th in the 110-meter hurdles with a time of 16.70s, and Charles Pulliam finished 11th in the 400 hurdles.

The 4x100 relay team placed 3rd with a time of 42.10, and the 4x400 team ran a time of 3:27.66 (a school record) to finish 6th.

“After a week off for the Easter Holiday, it was as though both teams came out with something to prove,” SAGU head track coach Jason Covarrubias said. “Historically, the Commerce meet is where we would hit a national qualifying mark because where the meet lands on the schedule. At this point of the year, we start to hit our mid-season stride and the weather normally is excellent for fast times. Today's weather was not ideal, but times continued to drop. 

“I am extremely proud of Nick, he had been working hard in the hurdles and to hit a "B" standard in his debut is impressive,” Covarrubias added. “He will continue to improve! Overall, it was a great day, Gabby alone scored more than 8 other schools, we set seven school records and 21 PR’s. It's coming together at the right time and it is exciting to watch!”

The Lions will next compete in Abilene at the McMurry Invite this Saturday.