I bet you didn’t have as good of a weekend as Marquette track star Joe Keys did.
Over the weekend, Keys competed in the national culmination of the 2022 indoor track and field season, participating in the heptathlon. He qualified for the meet by breaking the Marquette and Big East scoring record at the conference’s indoor meet earlier this season and that had him with the sixth best mark in the country coming into the competition. Keys set four all-time personal bests while doing that at the Big East meet, so it was certainly going to be hard work for him to match or best his record setting mark of 5,853 points.
Dang if he didn’t near do it.
Keys finished up with 5,699 points in Birmingham, Alabama, which landed him in 14th place, 512 points off the national championship pace. That’s still good enough for Second Team All-American honors. It is the second indoor All-American award of Keys’ collegiate career and his third overall with the Golden Eagles.
He started off Day 1 of the event by nearly breaking his personal best in the 60 meter dash, falling just 0.02 seconds short of his best with a time of 7.12 seconds. In the fourth event of the first day, Keys recorded his second best ever distance in the high jump, clearly 6 feet, 5.5 inches. His four event point total at the end of the first day was 3,096, the fourth best first day total of his career.
Keys had a pretty good day on Saturday, posting his season best in the pole vault at 15 fee, 3.5 inches. He also recorded his second best ever 1000 meter run time at 2:39.34. Again, that’s not four personal best all at one time, but it’s hard to argue with coming close three times and a season best in an event that wasn’t one of the four bests at the conference meet.
While he finished in 14th place nationally, it’s impossible to say that this is a disappointing result for Keys. His score of 5,699 points is his second best total ever, which means it’s the best score he’s ever had in the heptathlon outside of the Marquette and Big East record that he used to win a conference title. That’s pretty damn great, and it’s awesome to see Marquette track & field succeeding at a national level like this.
Joe Keys — 5,699 points
60 meters: 7.12 seconds, 840 points
Long Jump: 23 feet, 3.25 inches, 835 points
Shot Put: 41 feet, 5.25 inches, 645 points
High Jump: 6 feet, 5.5 inches, 776 points
60 meter hurdles: 8.27 seconds, 915 points
Pole Vault: 15 feet, 3.5 inches, 807 points
1000 meters: 2:39:34, 881 points