Men's Outdoor Track & Field Preview: Field Events

Reece HUnter

Written by Sports Information Student Assistant, Jake Sipes-Salter

HANOVER, Ind. - With the start of the outdoor campaign less than a week away, we will take a look at the field events for the Hanover men's track & field team, which saw a bevy of success during its indoor calendar.

The multi events are led by senior Joe Sheryak (Greenwood, Ind.), who qualified for the NCAA Division III Indoor Track & Field National Championships in the heptathlon and finished 10th overall. After being seeded 16th, Sheryak came out of the gates by running a 7.36-second 60 meter dash and leaping 6.57m in the long jump. Both were personal records for Sheryak, and the long jump distance set the program record that Billy Wilcox held since 2000. On day two, Sheryak set other Hanover top 10's in the 60m hurdles (9.19 sec.) and the pole vault (4.25m). Overall, Sheryak had 4,807 points, which reset his own indoor mark.

Potentially adding to this mix is sophomore Reece Hunter (Mooresville, Ind.), who at the Tom Hathaway Distance Classic scored 4,373 points in the heptathlon for one of the best program totals. Hunter has a diverse skillset, as he has been on record-setting relay teams while posting some of the best program appearances in a multitude of field events.

On the outdoor stage, Sheryak is the school record holder for the decathlon with 5,620 points, while holding some of Hanover's best performances in many of the field event categories.

Of these categories is the pole vault, which junior Ethan Monnin (Minster, Ohio) and Sheryak regularly compete in. Monnin is at the top of the indoor track & field performance list for the event with his 4.45m vault that he had at the HCAC Indoor Championships on Feb. 16.

Outdoors, Monnin is just shy of the 4.41m record held by Jerry Fishel since 1963. Monnin's personal best is a 4.35m bound that he accomplished at the 2017 HCAC Outdoor Championships. Sheryak is also among the Panther best in the pole vault on both the indoor and outdoor stages, as he has one of the 10 highest vaults on either surface. At the NCAA DIII National Championship, Sheryak vaulted 4.25m, while in the 2018 HCAC Outdoor Championship he got up to 3.85m for eighth in program history.

The high jump was headlined by freshman Riley Cook (Corydon, Ind.) in the 2019 indoor campaign, as he started his collegiate career with a 1.95m jump for an event win. His height was also the third-best on record for the Blue and Red. In all but one meet, Cook cleared 1.80m, and at the HCAC Indoor Championships was just .02 meters from beating his PR.

Sheryak is a frequent in the high jump as well, and as recently as the Ohio Northern Final Qualifier on March 2, he set his own record by getting 1.84m of air, which is now the seventh-best mark for Hanover.

Hunter and Sheryak are both some of the premier long jumpers on the team, as evidenced by Sheryak's indoor record-setting 6.57m at nationals. Sheryak has gone as far as 6.28m outdoors, which is less than 1/4 meter from being on the school performance list.

Hunter did the long jump three times during the indoor season, and his 6.38m at the Tom Hathaway Distance Classic on Jan. 25 was his personal best. As well, it ranks among Hanover's top five distances in the event. During his first collegiate year outdoors, Hunter tied Sheryak's PR of 6.38m at the HCAC Outdoor Championships, which knotted them in fifth overall.

Cook and Sheryak will likely lead the triple jump, as they were the two main competitors in the event during the indoor calendar. In Cook's indoor season, he carved a place among the Panther top 10 with a 12.00m bound at the HCAC Indoor Championships.

At the same meet, Sheryak got 12.84m for his collegiate high and third in Panther lore. Outdoors, Sheryak will try and surpass his best of 11.63m that he accomplished at the 2017 HCAC Outdoor Championships.

The throwers, spearheaded by junior Kyler Perez (Garrett, Ind.) and sophomore Hunter Wolford (Columbus, Ind.) put themselves among the top five for the Blue and Red in the indoor record books in 2019. Perez had his peak performance at the HCAC Indoor Championships, as he set personal bests in both the shot put and the weight throw. In the weight throw, his 15.54m was good for fifth overall and third in school history.

Wolford, on the other hand, excelled in the shot put, as he threw it 14.14m at the Ohio Northern Joe Banks Invitational on Feb. 2. In just his second collegiate meet, Wolford set the fourth-farthest shot put on record for HC. Moreover, the distance was more than a 1.5 meter improvement from his previous best of 12.45m at the Friday Night Invitational on Jan. 18.

Perez has experience in the outdoors, as well as top 10's in both the discus and the hammer throw, in which he recorded distances of 41.61 and 46.92, respectively, at the 2018 HCAC Outdoor Championships.

Contact: Tyler Jester