By Michael Stewart, Assistant Sports Editor
The Oklahoma Baptist indoor track teams wrapped up the 2019 indoor regular season in style as they swept the top awards in the 2019 Great American Conference Indoor Championships.
OBU served as host of the two-day meet that began Friday, Feb. 22 at Mosier Center on the campus of the University of Oklahoma in Norman.
The Lady Bison and Bison joined six other GAC teams in the event, including Arkansas Tech, East Central, Harding, Northwestern Oklahoma and Southern Nazarene.
Other non-conference teams competing were West Texas A&M, Rogers State, Oklahoma Christian, Azusa Pacific, Le Tourneau, and Laverne.
“We were really excited to compete,” junior JoziRose Mayfield said. “Heading into the meet, we knew we were going to have to come ready to compete.”
In the meet, the OBU women nearly doubled the points of second-place Harding. OBU finished with 234 points while Harding managed 125.
“The team really showed up in a big way,” Mayfield said. “This team is really special. Everyone shows support for one another and it really helps everyone perform their best.”
When the Lady Bison are performing their best, they are tough to beat. Kaylee Crowson earned the title of top female athlete at the event winning the 5000 meters and finishing second in both the one mile and 3000 meters.
“Kaylee (Crowson) made us all really proud,” Mayfield said. “The way she always competes is very contagious throughout the team.”
There were plenty of bright spotlights for the Lady Bison, with Cameka Witter and Mckae Mitchell finishing first and second in the 400-meter dash.
Four more Lady Bison finished in the top 10. Sher Van Der Westhuizen, Candis Rodgers, Beyel Tubbs and Mayfield were in the top 10. Tesa Potter finished first in the 800-meter dash. Brooklynn James finished sixth.
The 4×400 meter relay and distance medley went to the Lady Bison for first.
Peyton Worley got first in the pole vault. Isabella Lotz won the long jump.
The Bison also cruised to a victory in the meet.
The OBU men scored 278 points more than the second through fifth place finishing teams combined.
Oklahoma Christian finished second with 80 points, which was 200 points behind OBU.
“Everyone was very focused,” senior Nathan Crowson said. “When we are competing at our best, we are a hard team to beat, and we showed that.”
The men also claimed top male athlete of the competition. Heptathlon athlete, Hayden Ashley, earned the honor after he won five of the ten competitions and had two other second-place finishes.
“Hayden (Ashley) is such a competitor,” Crowson said. “He lives for big moments and always steps up to the plate.”
For the Bison, Mahcoe Smith won the 60-meter dash. The 400-meter dash went to Shirvante Knauls with Sayvon Milton right behind him.
Logan Huslig won the 800-meter dash.
The 4×10 and the distance medley went to the Bison for first as well.
For the high jump, Nathan Worley, Hayden Ashley and Andrew Worley went for first, second and third.
Spencer Lashley finished first in the pole vault and Saleem Fadel finished first in shot put and weight throw.
This was the first ever Great American Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships, and OBU made easy work of its competition.
The GAC event served as the last opportunity for OBU to add to its growing and lengthy list of NCAA meet qualifiers at next month’s meet in Pittsburg, Kansas.