On Friday and Saturday, the Big East hosted the 2015 Outdoor Track & Field Championships at Jumbo Elliott Track on Villanova's campus. Marquette's men's and women's teams both posted their best team score in Big East history, but both squads ended up finishing second to Villanova in the standings.
The men's team finished with 183 points, trailing the 243 that Villanova posted. MU was guided to that best ever performance by four individual championships during the meet. The most notable name on that list is MU men's basketball player Wally Ellenson, who won the high jump with a top height of 2.11 meters. That's short of his all time best, but it's still good enough to get all 10 first place points. Ellenson was joined on the champions podium by Marcell KirkmanBey (110m hurdles), Will Koeck (hammer throw), and John Krzyszkowski (javelin). Koeck repeated as Big East champion by setting a brand new school record in the hammer throw, hurling that bad boy just a shade over 204 feet. KirkmanBey eclipsed the rest of the 110m hurdles field by four-tenths of a second, which is essentially forever in a sprint like that. Like Koeck, Krzyszkowski also won his second straight Big East outdoor title this season, which means that all the sophomore knows is hurling javelins further than anyone else in the conference. His winning distance of 64.97 meters (213 feet, 2 inches) was almost 17 feet further than second place finisher Sean Locke of Villanova.
Villanova won the women's title with a whopping 247 points, easily eclipsing the 138 points that Marquette assembled. MU's women's team featured three individual champions. On Friday, Kat Koeck obliterated the competition in the hammer throw, hitting 60.59 meters on her best throw, which easily surpassed the 56.13m from Nyla Woods from St. John's. Saturday saw Marquette's other two individual titles as Maya Marion (shot put) and Tatyana Pashibin (high jump) took home gold medals. Marion edged out DePaul's Jazmyne Durrah, 13.92m to 13.87m, as she hit a personal best throw and the ninth best throw in school history. Pashibin clinched Marquette's spot as the highest jumping school in the Big East by clearing 1.70 meters with her very last jump of the competition.
All told, Marquette's athletes posted fourteen personal bests and broke three different school records during the competition. While the Wildcats ran away with the team titles in both the men's and the women's competitions, it's hard to be particularly bothered by it when MU's participants were knocking down personal barriers left and right.