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Stanat double OUA gold


 Double OUA throws gold for Stanat 


  The Windsor Lancer from St. Thomas won both weight throw and shot put titles



  February 26, 2024


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By Rob J. Ross

WINDSOR, Ont. - AJ Stanat is a double provincial champion.

The 20-year old from St. Thomas, won both men's shot put and weight throw at the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) track and field championships, Feb 23-24 at the University of Windsor.

Stanat handily won weight throw, with a measurement of 16.59 metres, over a metre and half further than the field.

In shot put, Stanat needed a personal best effort of 17.11 metres to tie Western Mustangs' Seth Edwards for the biggest throw. Stanat won gold having the third best measurement, that of 16.76 metres which led the competition after the first two rounds.

"It did, in fact, feel great waking up (Sunday) morning knowing that I hadn't been dreaming," said Stanat. "I would definitely say that my PB is currently the greatest throw of my season so far. All around it was a great competition. Everyone came alive when it mattered most. I feel proud not only of myself, but of the rest of the field competing as well."

Stanat had the two best throws after two rounds, until Edwards launched his 17.11 in round three. Stanat faulted his third round attempt and only hit 15.70 in round four, before bringing down the house with his 17.11.

"I was a bit rattled after Seth put one out over 17 metres, but ultimately knew that I had to regain my composure," Stanat said. "I think I recovered nicely as I threw the same mark as Seth. I didn't think heading into the competition that the winner would be decided by the second best throw of one's series, yet I had to be prepared nonetheless."

Third place was over two and half metres behind.

Stanat and Edwards are now co-leaders on the U-Sports ranking of the top shot put distance in the nation.

"Weight throw was alright. No big PB, but I consistently improved my distance and lead after each throw," said Stanat, who ranks fifth in the nation with a throw of 16.97m.

At the U-Sports championships, March 7-9 in Winnipeg, Stanat will be gunning for a medal.

"Podium is the goal," the third year Human Kinetics student said.

Two other athletes from Elgin County will also be making the flight west.

Hallee Knelsen of Malahide, with the Mustangs, finished fifth, in the women's 1000 metre run (2:50.45).

Knelsen ran a 2:09.33 fourth leg to lead Western to gold in the women's 4x800-metre relay race (8:53.33).

During the final practice prior to the championships, Knelsen suffered a lower body injury that had her questionable to compete at all. She completed two races, but had a DNF for the 600 metres.

The 20-year old third year Health Sciences student, will head to U-Sports, scheduled to run both the 600 and 1000 metres, plus the 4x8 relay. Knelsen ranks second in the nation for the women's 1000 (2:43.68) and 10th in the 600 (1:31.53).

Mason Basson from Sparta, with the Guelph Gryphons, finished sixth, in the men's 600-metre run (1:21.29), but was looking at a higher finish.

"Not what I was hoping for at all," said Basson. "I ran 1:20 at Guelph (Feb9). I only ran 1:21.2 (at OUAs). I had way too much left at the end. I didn't go out hard enough."

Basson will have the chance to have a better 600 at U-Sports.

"It means that I have checked off all the stepping stones I set earlier in this season. My main goal was to be top 12 in the country and make it to U sports," said Basson. "Now I just need to stay healthy and learn from OUAs."

The second year real estate student did win a gold medal, with the Gryphons' men's 4x800-metre relay team (7:40.51). Basson completed his 800 in 1:55.49.

Brady Fodor from Shedden, with the Mustangs, placed fourth in men's shot put (14.34m) and seventh in weight throw (13.24m).

Jadyn Luna from Thorndale, with Windsor, placed seventh overall at her first OUA women's pentathlon (2,971 points). Her best event was a silver in shot put (11.57m).

Luna also placed fifth in long jump (5.13m), seventh in the 800m run (2:42.73), ninth in the 60m hurdles (9.64) and 14th, high jump (1.29m).

Brianna Rand of Dorchester, with the Mustangs, was ninth in women's triple jump (11.50m) and 11th in long jump (5.24m).

Out East

At the Atlantic championships, in Moncton, New Brunswick, Hannah McIntyre of Dorchester, finished fifth, in the women's 1000m (2:57.50) and sixth in the 600m (1:40.57).

The first year student also was on St. Francis Xavier's women's silver medal winning 4x800-metre relay team (9:20.62) and fourth place 4x400-metre relay team (4:10.61).


NCAA conference meets

At the NCAA Mid Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) championships, in New York City, Aiden Coles of St. Thomas won silver in the men's 800-metre run (1:51.63), while his twin Tristan took bronze in the men's mile (4:05.18).

The brothers were both part of Iona University's golden men's 4x800-metre relay team (7:42.18).

Tristan also won gold with the men's distance medley relay team.

At the NCAA America championships in Birmingham, Alabama, Mike Roth of St. Thomas won silver, in the men's 400 metre sprint (46.44 sec.) and finished sixth in the 200 metres (21.35 sec.). Roth was also part of the University of Texas San Antonio's men's 4x400-metre silver medal winning relay team (3:11.44.).

At the NCAA Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) championships in Spokane, Washington, Tayah DeSousa from St. Thomas, with Long Beach State University, placed fifth in women's long jump (5.69m) and sixth in the 60-metre hurdles (8.64 sec.).





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