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Ring leaders Throwers building momentum in track and field season

Senior Megan Shaw throws the discus across the field during practice last Tuesday at the UTRGV Soccer and Track & Field Complex in Edinburg. Shaw won the women’s shot put at the Roadrunners Invitational held in San Antonio on April 8, where she surpassed the standard by hitting a mark of 14.29 meters for the win. LESLEY ROBLES/ THE RIDER

The Roadrunners Invitational was successful for UTRGV Track and Field. Senior Megan Shaw had a career weekend, placing first in both shot put and discus. Student-athletes that participated in throwing events led the charge during the strong weekend.

The Track and Field team competed April 8-9 at the Park West Athletics Complex in San Antonio.

Leading the way for field events in San Antonio was Shaw. The thrower from Refugio is in her senior year, after having spent all four years with the program, and is coming into her own this season. She placed first in shot put.

Her throw was a career-best of 14.29 meters, Shaw was the only thrower in the event to surpass 14 meters.

In the six-team field, Shaw also claimed first place in discus throw the next day. She won the event throwing the 2 kilogram discus 47.98 meters, another effort that approached her personal records.

Shaw said that setting career highs is a boost of confidence as the outdoor season progresses to its later stages.

“It’s actually a big boost of confidence, if you are able to PR (personal record) and get stronger as the season goes on. I was close to a PR in discus also, so it was just a great weekend,” the senior said. “You just want to keep that going and continue to PR, so that you can improve your regional position, that’s the goal.”

Shaw earned WAC Track and Field athlete of the week honors, her second time receiving the award in less than a month. She was bestowed with the same title March 15.

Her coach, Jaimee’ Bennett, says the impressive throws do not come as a surprise. Shaw’s success is the tail end of her bouncing back from injury.

“She has battled a lot of injury and I’m not really surprised to see her come on this strong,” said Bennett, who joined UTRGV’s coaching staff in the summer. “She has it in her to be one of the best throwers in the conference.

We have [the throwers] on a four-week program focusing on strength, so remaining healthy is key.”

She will want to stay healthy for the remainder of the season building up to the WAC Outdoor Championships May 11-15. Only a handful of meets this month are left to tune up before aiming for conference supremacy.

On the men’s side of UTRGV throwing events, Isaac Samuels also had a record-breaking weekend at the competition hosted by UT San Antonio. Samuels broke the program record in discus throw. He placed third overall, but his 50.85 meters eclipsed Isaac Ybarra’s 2005 mark of 50.70.

Samuels, the WAC all-academic, is in his second season with the program. Coach Bennett said Samuels has high aspirations from himself and has drive to excel.

“He really has goals of national contention and he continues to get better,” Bennett said of the sophomore. “It works out in his favor considering he is a sophomore and has a couple more years left.

These top throwers, along with their running and jumping teammates, headed west last week to compete across three different meets in California.

Student-athletes were split among the Mt. San Antonio College relays in Walnut, Calif., the Bryan Clay Invitational hosted by Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, Calif., and the Long Beach Invite hosted by Long Beach University.

The results will be final by the time this article reaches press. Keep up with current results on Goutrgv.com.

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