Dragons finish 2nd at Nationals

Tiffin University finished national runner-up at the National Championships.
Tiffin University finished national runner-up at the National Championships.

Tiffin University made a valiant effort but came up one point shy of earning its third consecutive NCAA Division II National Championship.

The Dragons finished second to Pittsburg State 49-48 for the title, as the National Championships hosted by Pittsburg State University came to a close. Adams State was third with 44 while Ashland was fourth with 40.5.

The decision came right down to the final two events, as the Dragons trailed by one point with both the 4x400 relay and the triple jump competing. With Pittsburg State not fielding a team in the 4x400, the Dragons needed only to place to win their third straight title. However, the Dragons could not come up with any points in either event, as the 4x400 team of Drew Hickman, Michael King, Shaquille Hildreth, and Chance Abbitt finished 9th in 3:14.69. The time missed 8th place by just .29 seconds. Jalon Monigan finished 11th in the triple jump with 15.26 meters.

Numerous standout performances and school record setting efforts highlighted the Dragons' day. Jonte Baker was second in the 60 meters, setting a new school record with a time of 6.61. Reginald Thomas was third in 6.68.

Eric Jackson also came through big, taking second in the shot put with 18.72 meters. Teammate Nikolas Curtiss finished just outside point consideration in 10th place.

Davis Bowers also placed high and shattered the school record in the pole vault, finishing 3rd with 5.25 meters, while Cameron Burrows finished fourth in the heptathlon with 5490 points to establish another new school record. James Ngandu posted another sterling finish, taking 4th in the 3000 meters in 8:07.36.

"I am really proud of the way these guys handled themselves throughout the weekend," said Head Coach Jeremy Croy. "We were seeded for 33 points coming in, faltered a little on day one and were pushed back to a projected 26. We regrouped and fired away all day on Saturday and came up just short. We beat the number 1, 3, and 4th ranked teams nationally. We came up just short to the host team who had an outstanding day. We will battle back in the outdoor season."