Ole Miss Track & Field Sends Large Delegation to Vanderbilt Invitational

Published 4:58 pm Friday, January 21, 2022

Ole Miss Track & Field Sends Large Delegation to Vanderbilt Invitational

Rebels Send 64 Total Athletes for Two-Day Competition


Ole Miss Notes | Preview & Links


NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Ole Miss men’s and women’s track & field returns to the road in full force this week, sending large delegations to the Vanderbilt Invitational, which will be held in Nashville on Jan. 21-22.




• The Rebels will send 64 total athletes to Nashville this weekend, 28 on the women’s squad and 36 on the men’s.


• Other schools aside from Ole Miss and Vanderbilt in competition include: UALR, Arkansas State, Austin Peay, Belmont, Cumberland, East Tennessee State, Georgia State, Kentucky, Lee University, Life University, Memphis, MTSU, Southern Miss, Tennessee State, Tennessee Tech, ULM and Western Kentucky.


• Ole Miss is coming off a strong open at UAB’s Blazer Invite on Jan. 14, where the Rebels broke one school record (John Rivera Jr., 600-meter) and set seven marks or times within the NCAA top-50 — including an NCAA-leading mark in the weight throw by Shey Taiwo.


• This weekend marks the second meet of a full-slate indoor season that will include upcoming stops at the Indiana Relays (Jan. 28-29), Vanderbilt’s Music City Challenge (Feb. 11-12) and Arkansas’ Tyson Invitational (Feb. 11-12) before the postseason, which will consist of the 2022 SEC Indoor Championships at Texas A&M on Feb. 25-26 and the aforementioned indoor national meet in Birmingham on March 11-12.


• The first USTFCCCA National Rating Index for the indoor season is due out Monday, Jan. 24. The Rebels were ranked in seven releases during the 2021 indoor season, with the Rebel men resting within the top-15 in each instance — topping out at a program record No. 6 in Week Two on Feb. 1.


• Ole Miss is coming off a 2021 indoor season for the ages, where the Rebel men finished 10th overall at a program-record 32 NCAA points, and the women scored their third-most points ever with 12, which was good for 19th place overall. The men’s 10th-place finish stood as the best by the Ole Miss men since 2001 (10th), and tied for the second-best behind only a tie for ninth in 1991.


• With 13 First or Second-Team All-Americans back from the 2021 indoor season, Ole Miss returns nearly all of that historic national roster, including all four members of the NCAA runner-up men’s distance medley relay of Everett Smulders, Elijah Dryer, John Rivera Jr. and Mario Garcia Romo that ran the third-fastest time in NCAA history and fourth-fastest time in world history, only finishing behind the world record holders of Oregon.


• Other men’s All-Americans returning include Second-Teamers Allen Gordon (high jump, 9th; long jump, 9th) and Baylor Franklin (800-meter, 12th). The lone All-American loss for the Rebel men is Waleed Suliman, who finished third in the mile and 15th in the 3K in 2021.


• The Ole Miss women, meanwhile, return five of six First-Team All-Americans, with the only departure being Maddie King from the eighth-place women’s DMR squad that included returnees Toni Glatz, Sintayehu Vissa and Loral Winn.


• Ole Miss also returns one of the most fearsome women’s throws units in the history of the NCAA for 2022. All-American duo Jasmine Mitchell and Shey Taiwo return after the pair went back-to-back at the national meet in the weight throw last season, with Taiwo finishing third and Mitchell fourth. Taiwo and Mitchell last season were the first teammates in the history of the NCAA to eclipse the 23-meter mark in the same season.


• A total of 26 new Rebels join the roster for 2022: pole vaulter Frankie Amore, sprinter Ariyonna Augustine, jumper Iangelo Atkinstall-Daley, distance runenr Shane Bracken, distance runner Aiden Britt, jumper Spencer Brown, pole vaulter/multi athlete Jose Corbo, distance runner Tiarnan Crorken, distance runner Dereck Elkins, thrower Mason Hickel, distance runner Hannah Ielfield, thrower Montel Johnson, pole vaulter Ford Maberry, sprinter Bria Mack, distance runner Chris Maxon, sprinter Keirston Paige, distance runner Miles Phillips, distance runner Cole Piotrowski, distance runner Chase Rose, distance runner Gabe Scales, jumper LaRiah Shannon, jumper Annie Strong, distance runner Lydia van Dijk, sprinter Isaiah Weasby, distance runner James Young and hurdler Ahmad Young Jr.


• Ole Miss enters year seven under head coach Connie Price-Smith, who has led the Rebels to new heights in her time in Oxford. On the track, the Rebels have collected seven NCAA top-25 team finishes, seven NCAA individual champions, five NCAA runners-up, 105 First or Second-Team All-Americans, 161 NCAA points, 50 SEC Champions and program-record SEC finishes in men’s indoor (third, 2x), women’s indoor (fifth, 2017) and women’s outdoor (fifth, 2018). Nationally under her guidance, the track Rebels have recorded program records in women’s indoor (T-12th, 2017) and the second-best ever in men’s indoor (10th, 2021). In 21 years as a head coach at both Ole Miss and Southern Illinois dating back to 2002, Price-Smith has collected 12 NCAA event titles and mentored 179 All-Americans on the track.


• In its history indoors, Ole Miss has finished in the NCAA top-25 of the team standings 17 total times (12 times on the men’s side, five times on the women’s side).


• Ole Miss owns 121 First or Second-Team All-Americans indoors (80 men, 41 women), as well as eight NCAA titles (11 total NCAA Champions; nine men, two women). Of those 121, a total of 58 All-Americans (37 men, 21 women) have come under Price-Smith, as well as two NCAA titles (Raven Saunders, shot put, 2017; men’s DMR, 2017).


• Ole Miss has won 47 SEC Indoor titles (37 men, 10 women) with 68 SEC Champions (58 men, 10 women).


• Ole Miss won five SEC titles in 2021 in the women’s weight throw (Jasmine Mitchell), men’s mile (Waleed Suliman), men’s 3K (Mario Garcia Romo), men’s 5K (Cole Bullock) and men’s distance medley relay (Suliman, Marcus Dropik, Everett Smulders, Garcia Romo).




• This weekend at Vanderbilt will serve as the first meet of the season for several All-American Rebel distance runners such as (1000-Meter) Cade Bethmann (1000-Meter), Cole Bullock (Mile), Mario Garcia Romo (1000-Meter), John Rivera Jr. (800-Meter) and Everett Smulders (800-Meter), as well as highly-regarded newcomers such as Shane Bracken (Mile), Tiarnan Crorken (1000-Meter), Cruz Culpepper (1000-Meter), Chris Maxon (5000-Meter) and James Young (Mile).


• Ole Miss remained the dominant force in the SEC in the distance medley relay in 2021, and proved its worth in the history books of the world. The Rebel men’s DMR of Everett Smulders, Elijah Dryer, John Rivera Jr. and Mario Garcia Romo finished NCAA Runner-Up at 9:20.75 — the third-best time in NCAA history and fourth-best in the history of the world that obliterated the Ole Miss school record set just two weeks earlier at the SEC Indoor Championships.


• At SECs, the Rebel men’s foursome of Waleed Suliman, Marcus Dropik, Smulders and Garcia Romo set an SEC meet record at 9:29.35 to win their seventh DMR title in the last eight seasons.


• Garcia Romo was recently invited as the lone collegiate competitor in the historic Wanamaker Mile at the 114th Millrose Games, set for Jan. 29 at The Armory in New York City. A three-time First-Team All-American, Garcia Romo enters his redshirt junior indoor season as the school record holder in the 3K (7:48.40) and No. 2 in the mile (3:56.46). Garcia Romo was one of four Rebels to break the four-minute barrier in the mile all at once in one of the best moments of the season in 2021, joining Suliman (3:55.60), Garcia Romo (3:56.46), Smulders (3:58.73) and Baylor Franklin (3:59.12) all doing so at Vanderbilt’s Music City Challenge on Feb. 12.


• Garcia Romo stands as one of just four Rebels all-time to own sub-4 mile times and sub-8 3K times alongside Suliman, Sean Tobin and Derek Gutierrez.


• Garcia Romo is one of two returning SEC Indoor individual champions from 2021 after winning the 3K last season in addition to running anchor on the SEC title DMR team. The other is Cole Bullock, who opens his 2022 campaign in the mile this weekend after winning the SEC 5K title in 2021.


• Newcomers Shane Bracken and Tiarnan Crorken were added to the Ole Miss roster just recently after joining as mid-year enrollees. Bracken hails from Ireland and transfers in from Division II Saint Leo University (where Rebel All-American Sintayehu Vissa ran), and where he was a two-time All-American in the 1500-meter outdoors. Crorken, meanwhile, is from Burnley, England, where he was the U23 English 1500-meter champion in 2021 and ran at the U23 European Championships in Tallinn. He owns a mile PR of 3:58.89.


• Senior John Rivera Jr. broke his own school record in the 600-meter at the Blazer Invite last week, running a meet record 1:17.45 to win and topple his 2020 record from the same meet at 1:17.90.


• Rivera was narrowly thwarted of an SEC individual title in the 800-meter last season as well, finishing as the silver medalist. Ole Miss won the mile, 3K, 5K and DMR, the closest to an SEC distance sweep since Arkansas did so in 1999. Rivera was an individual national qualifier and All-American for the cancelled 2020 NCAA Indoor Championships in the 800-meter.


• Senior transfer Montel Johnson opened his Rebel career with an impressive mark in the weight throw, already jumping up to No. 5 all-time at Ole Miss with a five-foot PR of 20.26m/66-05.75. Johnson, who won the MAAC weight throw title while at Monmouth in 2021, currently ranks 24th nationally and No. 4 in the SEC at that season-opening toss at the Blazer Invite.


• Freshman Iangelo Atkinstall-Daley had a solid open to his Rebel career as well in the triple jump. Atkinstall-Daley finished third at the Blazer Invite at 15.14m/49-08.25 that puts him at No. 36 in the NCAA and No. 6 in the SEC. Among freshmen, Atkinstall-Daley currently ranks seventh nationally and third in the SEC.


• Senior hurdler Kenney Broadnax also rests in the NCAA top-50 at his season-opening time in the 60-meter hurdles at 8.01, run in the final at the Blazer Invite. Broadnax qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Championships in the 110-meter hurdles, and ended the 2021 indoor regular season ranked 12th in the SEC in the 60-meter hurdles at 7.95.


• All-American jumper Allen Gordon returns for an extra year of eligibility after a splendid 2021 campaign and will open at UAB on Friday. Gordon was a finalist in the long jump at the U.S. Olympic Trials, where he finished in ninth place. Gordon was one of the most consistent jumpers in the NCAA across all three of his events in 2021, and alongside LSU national champion JuVaughn Harrison was one of just two long jump/high jump doublers at both national meets. Gordon finished the NCAA outdoor season as the only jumper nationally at 7’ 2.25” in the high jump, 25’ 11.50” in the long jump and 51’ 6.5” in the triple jump, and he is also the only jumper in Ole Miss history to hit those distances. Gordon tied for the SEC indoor bronze in the high jump in 2021.


• Senior thrower Joseph Benedetto enters 2022 within one foot of All-American Dempsey McGuigan’s 2018 weight throw  record at 20.87m/68-05.75 to McGuigan’s 21.11m/69-03.25.


• Junior thrower Daniel Viveros scored conference points in the shot put both indoors and outdoors in 2021, finishing seventh indoors before an eighth-place showing outdoors.




• Senior Shey Taiwo currently leads the NCAA by nearly 1.5 feet at her season-opening toss of 22.62m/74-02.50 that won her the title at the Blazer Invite on Jan. 14. That open came on her very first attempt of 2022, and stands as her best season-opening toss by nearly five feet and it currently puts her at No. 4 in the world to start the 2022 season.


• Taiwo is a three-time NCAA qualifier and two-time First-Team All-American in the weight throw, and she is coming off a 2021 outdoor campaign that saw her finish NCAA runner-up in the hammer throw. Taiwo was the 2020 SEC Champion in the weight throw, and was the SEC runner-up in 2021 behind teammate Jasmine Mitchell.


• Mitchell opened the season at 22.03m/72-03.50, currently the fourth-best throw in the NCAA, second-best in the SEC and No. 7 worldwide.


• Ole Miss enters 2022 with one of the most fearsome women’s weight throw sqauds in NCAA history, with four owning career-best throws of 68 feet or further, three 72 feet or further, and the top-two — reigning SEC Champion Jasmine Mitchell and runner-up Shey Taiwo — at 75 feet or further. Mitchell’s SEC winning toss of 23.24m/76-03.00, paired with Taiwo’s 23.04m/75-07.25 also from the conference meet, made the duo the first teammates in NCAA history to throw beyond 23 meters in the same season — let alone the same meet. Both were All-Americans indoors in 2021, with Taiwo finishing third and Mitchell fourth. Taiwo was also the SEC Champion in 2020, and Ole Miss has won the SEC women’s weight title in four of the last five years, joining repeat wins from Janeah Stewart in 2017 and 2018.


• In 2020, Ole Miss was also the first school in NCAA history with three women at or beyond the 22-meter plateau in the weight throw in a single season: Shey Taiwo, Jasmine Mitchell, Deborah Bulai. All three qualified and earned All-American honors at the cancelled 2020 NCAA Indoor Championships. Prior to 2020, only three schools ever had two 22-meter throwers (Florida, 2004; Louisville, 2010; Southern Illinois, 2011), including a Southern Illinois squad coached by head coach Connie Price-Smith and throws coach John Smith via marks from Olympian Gwen Berry and NCAA Champion Jeneva McCall (both ended up serving as Ole Miss volunteer assistant coaches). Notre Dame also had two throwers beyond 22 meters, making 2020 the first in NCAA history to have multiple schools have multiple athletes throw beyond that mark.


• Junior Jalani Davis opened 2022 with a win in the shot put at UAB, throwing a two-foot indoor career-best of 16.39m/53-09.25 that puts her at No. 13 in the NCAA and No. 3 in the SEC this season. Davis also moved up to No. 3 all-time at Ole Miss. Davis is coming off a superb 2021 outdoor season that saw her take SEC Outdoor runner-up honors at a monster toss of 17.52m/57-05.75 and stand as the lone thrower nationwide — men’s or women’s — to triple at the NCAA Outdoor Championships.


• This weekend’s trip to Nashville also serves as the season open for a deep and talented Rebel women’s distance squad for the 2022 indoor season. Returning All-Americans from the 2021 eighth-place distance medley relay squad Toni Glatz (200-meter), Sintayehu Vissa (mile, 3K) and Loral Winn (1000-meter, mile) will return to action, as will 3K school record holder Anna Elkin (3000-meter), who returns for one final season of eligibility.


• Junior Sintayehu Vissa took the track by storm in 2021 shortly after joining the Ole Miss roster, running the fastest 800-meter time since 2017 at 2:06.45 in her debut at Arkansas on Jan. 29 before becoming the fourth and fastest Rebel to set the mile record at the still-standing 4:40.99 at the Music City Challenge on Feb. 12. Vissa was also a First-Team All-American indoors on the Rebel women’s DMR that finished eighth, she was an NCAA East Region qualifier outdoors in the 800-meter where she ran 2:04.53, and this past fall she became the first Rebel woman to ever earn All-American status in the cross country season after a 33rd-place finish at the national meet.


• Junior and NCAA Outdoor qualifier Lyndsey Reed opened with runner-up finish at UAB on Jan. 14 at 4.11m/13-05.75, currently the 23rd-best clearance in the NCAA and fifth-best in the SEC. Reed’s indoor career-best stands at 4.14m/13-07.25, and her outdoor best from the 2021 LSU Invite is 4.28m/14-00.50.


• Senior and LSU transfer Ariyonna Augustine is set to open her Ole Miss career this weekend, as she is entered in the 60-meter dash. Augustine owns a career-best time of 7.33 in the 60-meter from the 2019 SEC Indoor Championships, where she scored in eighth place.


Rebel Men Competing:

60-Meter Dash: Keirston Paige, Ryan Star, Isaiah Teer, Tristyn Wooley, Ahmad Young Jr.

200-Meter Dash: Isaiah Teer, Tristyn Wooley

800-Meter: Marcus Dropik, Jacob Lough, John Rivera Jr., Everett Smulders

1000-Meter: Cade Bethmann, Tiarnan Crorken, Cruz Culpepper, Mario Garcia Romo, Cole Piotrowski

Mile: Shane Bracken, Cole Bullock, Michael Coccia, Dereck Elkins, Baylor Franklin, Cole Piotrowski, James Young

5K: Chris Maxon, Nick Moulai

60-Meter Hurdles: Luke Etherton, Pierce Genereux, Keirston Paige, Ahmad Young Jr.

4×400-Meter Relay: Marcus Dropik, John Rivera Jr., Everett Smulders, Jacob Lough

High Jump: Allen Gordon, Ukurugenzi Kojo

Pole Vault: Frankie Amore, Pierce Genereux, Ford Maberry

Long Jump: Iangelo Atkinstall-Daley, Luke Etherton, Allen Gordon, Torrence Tuberville

Triple Jump: Iangelo Atkinstall-Daley

Shot Put: Mason Hickel, Daniel Viveros

Weight Throw: Joseph Benedetto, Costen Campion, Mason Hickel, Montel Johnson, Joseph Lanham


Rebel Women Competing:

60-Meter Dash: Ariyonna Augustine, Kelly Rowe

200-Meter Dash: Toni Glatz, Kelly Rowe

400-Meter Dash: Meg Goebel, Sara Van Aken

1000-Meter: Morgan Claire Rose, Lydia van Dijk, Loral Winn

Mile: Anna Elkin, Morgan Claire Rose, Kristel van den Berg, Lydia van Dijk, Sintayehu Vissa, Loral Winn

3K: Skylar Boogerd, Anna Elkin, Brooke Gilmore, Cate Tracht, Sintayehu Vissa

60-Meter Hurdles: Meg Goebel, LaRiah Shannon

High Jump: Meg Goebel, LaRiah Shannon, Sara Van Aken

Pole Vault: Alex Brooks, Samara McConnell, Elizabeth Nix, Lyndsey Reed

Long Jump: Meg Goebel, Skye Gross, Sara Van Aken

Triple Jump: Kyla McLaurin

Shot Put: Tedreauna Britt, Jalani Davis, Jasmine Mitchell, Shey Taiwo

Weight Throw: Tedreauna Britt, Deborah Bulai, Jalani Davis, Jasmine Mitchell, Shey Taiwo

Pentathlon: Annie Strong


2022 Vanderbilt Invitational, Master Schedule (all times CT)
Day One | Friday, January 21
Time Event Athlete(s)
11:30 a.m. Women’s Pentathlon (60m Hurdles, High Jump, Shot Put, Long Jump, 800m) Annie Strong
3:00 p.m. Women’s High Jump Meg Goebel
LaRiah Shannon
Sara Van Aken
Men’s Weight Throw Joseph Benedetto (Flight 2)
Costen Campion (Flight 2)
Mason Hickel (Flight 2)
Montel Johnson (Flight 2)
Joseph Lanham (Flight 2)
3:15 p.m. Men’s High Jump Allen Gordon
Ukurugenzi Kojo
3:30 p.m. Men’s Long Jump Luke Etherton (Flight 1)
Torrence Tuberville (Flight 1)
Allen Gordon (Flight 2)
Iangelo Atkinstall-Daley (Flight 2)
Women’s Long Jump Meg Goebel (Flight 1)
Skye Gross (Flight 2)
Sara Van Aken (Flight 2)
Men’s Pole Vault Frankie Amore
Pierce Genereux
Ford Maberry
5:30 p.m. Women’s 200-Meter Dash Kelly Rowe (Heat 4, Lane 3)
Toni Glatz (Heat 5, Lane 3)
6:00 p.m. Men’s 200-Meter Dash Isaiah Teer (Heat 2, Lane 4)
Tristyn Wooley (Heat 2, Lane 6)
Women’s Weight Throw Tedreauna Britt (Flight 2)
Deborah Bulai (Flight 2)
Jalani Davis (Flight 2)
Jasmine Mitchell (Flight 2)
Shey Taiwo (Flight 2)
7:20 p.m. Men’s 5K Chris Maxon
Nick Moulai
7:40 p.m. Women’s 1000-Meter Loral Winn (Heat 1)
Lydia van Dijk (Heat 1)
Morgan Claire Rose (Heat 2)
7:50 p.m. Men’s 1000-Meter Cade Bethmann (Heat 1)
Tiarnan Crorken (Heat 1)
Cruz Culpepper (Heat 1)
Baylor Franklin (Heat 1)
Mario Garcia Romo (Heat 1)
Cole Piotrowski (Heat 1)
Day Two | Saturday, January 22
Time Event Athlete(s)
11:00 a.m. Men’s Shot Put Mason Hickel (Flight 2)
Daniel Viveros (Flight 2)
12:00 p.m. Women’s 60-Meter Hurdles Prelims Meg Goebel (Heat 1, Lane 2)
LaRiah Shannon (Heat 2, Lane 7)
12:20 p.m. Men’s 60-Meter Hurdles Prelims Keirston Paige (Heat 1, Lane 5)
Ahmad Young Jr. (Heat 2, Lane 2)
Pierce Genereux (Heat 2, Lane 7)
Luke Etherton (Heat 3, Lane 3)
12:40 p.m. Women’s 60-Meter Dash Prelims Ariyonna Augustine (Heat 4, Lane 2)
Kelly Rowe (Heat 5, Lane 6)
1:00 p.m. Men’s 60-Meter Dash Prelims Isaiah Teer (Heat 3, Lane 2)
Ryan Star (Heat 4, Lane 2)
Ahmad Young Jr. (Heat 4, Lane 5)
Tristyn Wooley (Heat 5, Lane 2)
Keirston Paige (Heat 5, Lane 6)
Men’s Triple Jump Iangelo Atkinstall-Daley
Women’s Triple Jump Kyla McLaurin (Flight 2)
1:20 p.m. Women’s Mile Anna Elkin (Heat 1)
Kristel van den Berg (Heat 1)
Lydia van Dijk (Heat 1)
Sintayehu Vissa (Heat 1)
Loral Winn (Heat 1)
Morgan Claire Rose (Heat 2)
1:40 p.m. Men’s Mile Shane Bracken (Heat 1)
Cole Bullock (Heat 1)
Michael Coccia (Heat 1)
Dereck Elkins (Heat 1)
Baylor Franklin (Heat 1)
Cole Piotrowski (Heat 1)
James Young (Heat 1)
2:00 p.m. Women’s Shot Put Tedreauna Britt (Flight 2)
Jalani Davis (Flight 2)
Jasmine Mitchell (Flight 2)
Shey Taiwo (Flight 2)
2:10 p.m. Men’s 60-Meter Hurdles Final
2:15 p.m. Women’s 60-Meter Hurdles Final
2:20 p.m. Men’s 60-Meter Dash Final
2:25 p.m. Women’s 60-Meter Dash Final
2:30 p.m. Women’s Pole Vault Alex Brooks
Samara McConnell
Elizabeth Nix
Lyndsey Reed
2:35 p.m. Women’s 400-Meter Dash Sara Van Aken (Heat 7, Lane 1)
Meg Goebel (Heat 7, Lane 2)
3:20 p.m. Men’s 800-Meter John Rivera Jr. (Heat 1, Lane 2)
Everett Smulders (Heat 1, Lane 5)
Marcus Dropik (Heat 2, Lane 2)
Jacob Lough (Heat 2, Lane 3)
3:35 p.m. Women’s 3K Skylar Boogerd (Heat 1)
Anna Elkin (Heat 1)
Brooke Gilmore (Heat 1)
Cate Tracht (Heat 1)
Sintayehu Vissa (Heat 1)
4:50 p.m. Men’s 4×400-Meter Relay (Heat 2, Lane 2) Marcus Dropik
John Rivera Jr.
Everett Smulders
Jacob Lough


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