Toppers compete against professionals

Chela Counts

This weekend, WKU sprinters and distance runners traveled to Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, Calif., to compete in the 54th annual Mt. SAC Relays.

The relays are held each April and bring together all levels and disciplines of track and field. Due to the high level of competition, this meet has been known for its phrase — “Where the best athletes compete.”

Sophomore sprinter David Mokone broke his own 800-meter record this weekend for the second time during the outdoor season, as Mokone clocked a time of 1:48.09 to finish second overall in the meet.

Teammate and sophomore sprinter De’Myco Winston also posted great times as he competed in the open 400-meters, the university 4×400 and the invitational elite 4×4 — a race against some of the nation’s top professionals.

Winston was the overall winner of the five sections that competed in the open 400-meter dash, clocking a time of 46.83 seconds.

Winston said he was pleased with his performance and honored to run against professional sprinters.

“I feel great, and it just goes to show improvement in my skills and strength, but without the coaching, (it) wouldn’t be possible,” he said. “It felt good to know I can compete on the same caliber as them was very exciting.”

Winston’s winning effort during the meet moved him into second place on WKU’s all-time list in the event, passing Gavin Smellie — a former Topper All-American — and the first in school history to ever break the 47-second barrier.

For distance in the men’s 3,000-meter steeplechase, Kyle Chettleburgh finished fourth in the Open C race.

He clocked a personal-best time of 9:01.35 and is also now placed third on the school’s all-time list — passing former Sun Belt Conference steeple champion Jef Scott.