NORWALK — Senior Kenneth Medwood was setting new records in the men’s 400-meter hurdles at Cerritos College’s Falcon Field, in a meet that featured a gold medalist who won that same event in the 2004 Olympics.
Medwood circled the track in 50.37 seconds to establish a new school and meet record in the 400 hurdles, helping Long Beach State produce a one-two finish in the event at the Beach Invitational, which is the only 49er-hosted competition of the season.
Teammate Sam Jeter, a junior, crossed the line in second with a personal record of 51.26 to set the sixth best mark in LBSU history.
Medwood added a third-place performance in the men’s long jump, turning in a mark of 23 feet, 10 1/4 inches, along with a sixth-place finish in the 200-meter dash with a time of 21.49.
Jeter posted a Big West-qualifying mark in the 200 meters with a time of 21.92 to win the third heat.
The meet also included Felix Sanchez, who won a gold medal in the 400-meter hurdles for the Dominican Republic at the Athens Olympics.
Medwood and Sanchez weren’t in the same race, however, as Sanchez blazed to a 46.67 time in the first heat of the men’s 400-meter dash to register the top mark in the event.
“Those guys are paying entrance fees to get in as well,” LBSU head coach Andy Sythe said. “Hopefully, they walk away and say ‘it’s a good event.'”
The 49ers also put on a display of strength in the men’s hammer throw after placing three athletes in the top four spots.
Senior Colin Dunbar, who competed as an unattached participant, posted a mark of 202-03, while juniors Rajan Baines (176-01) and Peter Fourtounis (175-01) finished behind in third and fourth, respectively.
In the men’s high jump, senior Alex Black came in a tie for third after clearing a height of 6-07 1/2.
Junior Cesar Puga led the 49er men in the discus throw with a fifth-place mark of 167-00. Puga also placed sixth in the men’s shot put with a throw of 52-07 1/4.
Junior Nimrod Piggee tied for eighth place in the men’s 110-meter hurdles, clocking in with a time of 14.65 in the first heat.
“Our men’s team is getting back to form.” Sythe said. “We’re in a position to battle other schools for the [Big West Conference] title.”
Senior Tayler O’Connor paced the 49er women in Norwalk with a second-place finish in the high jump. O’Connor set a mark of 5-08 3/4 to tie a personal best.
Sophomores Sara Macey and Katrina Graves-Johnson finished in a six-way tie for sixth in the event with a height of 5-05 3/4.
Sophomore Rachel Hammar recorded a top-10 finish in the women’s discus throw as she turned in a distance of 153-04.
“The women’s team has struggled with health issues,” Sythe said. “This is not the team we’re capable of being. We have to take our losses and emphasize our success.
“We have to get the individuals who are healthy to do as well as possible.”
The non-scored competition featured roughly 1,200 participants representing more than 47 colleges in what Sythe dubbed “the largest all-collegiate meet on the West Coast.”
LBSU returns to the track on April 22 when the team travels to Des Moines, Iowa for the three-day Drake Relays.
The 49ers will also send a contingent of athletes to the UC San Diego Triton Invitational in La Jolla from April 23-24.
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