Men in 2nd, Women in 6th as Cavaliers claim four gold medals at Day 2 of ACC Championships

Courtesy UVA Media Relations

Virginia’s Derek Pekar became only the second freshman (first in 12 years) to win the heptathlon event at the ACC Championships on Friday at Notre Dame (Photos: UVA Athletics).

The Virginia men’s and women’s track teams combined to win four gold medals during the second day of competition at the ACC Indoor Championships at Notre Dame’s Loftus Sports Center on Friday.

Entering the final round of competition on Saturday, the UVA men are in second place with 45 points, a single point behind tournament leading Florida State. Virginia Tech is in third place with 40 points. The Cavalier women moved up to sixth place with 22 total points. Louisville leads the women’s meet with 34.5 points while Duke is second at 34 points.

Freshman Derek Pekar took over the lead for the heptathlon title to start the day with a second-place finish in the 60-meter hurdles. He followed that up with a runner-up showing in the pole vault and to give him a comfortable cushion heading into the 1000 meters, the heptathlon’s final event.

Pekar became just the second freshman to win the ACC heptathlon title and the first since 2008. His 5,362 points were enough to set a UVA freshman record. Fellow first-year Elby Omohundro placed fourth in the competition with 5,038 points to earn second-team All-ACC honors.

The Cavaliers ended the day on just as strong of a note. Within minutes of each other, pole vaulter Sam Young and high jumper Brenton Foster won their events for the first time to combine for 20 of UVA’s total points.

Young, a senior, topped the field with a height of 5.38m (17’7.75”), setting a UVA school mark in the process. He became the first Virginia competitor to win the indoor pole vault since Henry Davenport and Clarence Roberts shared the crown in 1958.

Foster, who was the runner-up at last year’s championship, cleared 2.17m (7’1.5”) to claim the pole vault title. The senior from Townsville, Australia, was the first Cavalier to win that event since Herman Moore in 1990. Earlier this season Foster broke UVA’s long-standing record in the event with a clearance of 2.26m (7’5”).

Khyasia Caldwell (left) and Jada Seaman celebrate their 1-2 finish in the long jump at the ACC Indoor Track & Field Championships at Notre Dame Friday.

The Cavalier women claimed the top two spots on the podium for the long jump competition. Freshman Jada Seaman set the school record in the prelims with a leap of 6.46m (21’2.5”). She did not compete in the event finals while competing in the 200 meters that was taking place at the same time.

Sophomore Khyasia Caldwell gave UVA a sweep of the top two spots by picking up runner-up honors with a personal best effort of 6.29m (20’7.75”).

Coverage of the final day of events on ACC Network Extra starts at 11 a.m. on Saturday. Play-by-play announcer Shawn Kenney will be joined by veteran analyst Larry Rawson and statistician/researcher Dave Milner from noon until the meet’s conclusion (approximately 4:30 p.m.) on Saturday.

The ACC Championships serve as the men’s and women’s matchup between Virginia and Virginia Tech in the Commonwealth Clash. The Commonwealth Clash presented by Virginia529 is a head-to-head, points-based competition between the athletic teams at University of Virginia and Virginia Tech.

The Commonwealth Clash encourages a friendly, statewide rivalry between the two schools across all school-sponsored sports with 21 individual event points on the line. The school that accumulates 11 points or more will be crowned the winner and take home the Virginia529 Commonwealth Clash trophy. Visit www.TheCommonwealthClash.com for more information and updated standings.

Day 1 recap:

Outstanding performances in the multi-events highlighted Virginia’s first day of competition Thursday. Pekar posted personal-best marks in all four events of the heptathlon and totaled 3,055 points, fueled by first-place performances in the long jump and the high jump.

Pekar opened the meet with a PR (7.20) in the 60-meter dash and followed that up with a win in the long jump on a season-best leap of 11.74m (23’6.75”). After recording his best throw in the shot put (11.74m/38’6.25”) he handily won the high jump at 1.99m (6’6.25”), bettering his previous best mark by two inches.

Omohundro matched Pekar in the high jump until the final round, finishing second at 1.93m (6’4”). He finished the day in third place in the points standings at 2,918. The high jump was one of three PRs by the Cavalier freshman on the day. He also set best marks in the long jump (6.92m/22’8.5”) and shot put (11.79m/38’8.25”).

On the women’s side, sophomore Alix Still earned second-team All-ACC honors for her sixth-place performance in the pentathlon. She finished with a career-best 3,657 points including PRs in the 60-meter hurdles (8.86), shot put 10.22m (33’6.5”) and 800 meters (2:21.94).

UVA’s men’s distance medley relay team of senior Randy Neish, junior Brandon Outlaw, freshman Ethan Zeh and sophomore Colton Bogucki and the Cavalier women’s distance medley relay team of (graduate student) Haley Yost, senior Alexis Woodley, freshman Alahna Sabbakhan and junior Kiera Bothwell, both finished eighth in their respective races.

Updated Team Standings:

Women’s Standings

Day 2 of 3

6 of 17 events scored

1. Louisville — 34.5

2. Duke — 34

T3. NC State — 26

T3. Notre Dame — 26

5. Virginia Tech — 25.5

6. Virginia — 22

7. Wake Forest — 12

8. Georgia Tech — 11

9. Miami — 10

T10. North Carolina — 9

T10. Clemson — 9

T12. Pitt — 5

T12. Boston College — 5

14. Florida State — 3

15. Syracuse — 2

Men’s Standings

Day 2 of 3

7 of 17 events scored

1. Florida State — 46

2. Virginia — 45

3. Virginia Tech — 40

4. Notre Dame — 37

5. Duke — 18

T6. Pitt — 17

T6. Wake Forest — 17

8. Louisville — 15

9. NC State — 12

10. North Carolina — 8

11. Miami — 6

T12. Syracuse — 5

T12. Georgia Tech — 5

T14. Boston College — 1

T14. Clemson — 1

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