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Claiborne leads parade of golds

Corey Claiborne throws the shot put at the Governors Invitational in Clarksville, Tenn. on Friday, April 13, 2018.
Corey Claiborne throws the shot put at the Governors Invitational in Clarksville, Tenn. on Friday, April 13, 2018.

CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – Belmont University athletes claimed four first-place finishes at Austin Peay's Governors Invitational track and field meet Friday as Corey Claiborne broke his own school record in the shot put for the third time this outdoor season.

Claiborne (Alpharetta, Ga.) accounted for two golds with top finishes in both the shot put and discus, while fellow junior Nate Nammour (Tampa, Fla.) ran to first in the 400 meters and freshman Bobby Willingham (Nashville, Tenn.) had the top pole vault mark.

It was Clairborne's shot put toss that ruled the day though, a throw of 17.42 meters (57-2) that bested the field by more than five full feet. That surpassed his most recent record mark of 16.71, set two weeks ago at the Texas Relays. It was also farther than any throw this season in the Ohio Valley Conference entering this week's meet.

Friday's performance was a breakthrough for Claiborne, said Belmont Assistant Track Coach Joe Frye, who coaches the throwers. He threw 17.42 in the event finals but also 16.70 and 16.80 early in the competition. 

"This was the best series of throws in his life and for a rotational shot putter, that consistency is gold," Frye said. "It's not like he's a lot stronger now than he was at the beginning of the outdoor season, he's just becoming a better competitor."

Claiborne also set a personal best in the discus, an event he also won with a throw of 47.00 (154-2). 

Nammour ran his fastest 400 of the season to finish first in 47.58 seconds. That's also the quickest time in the OVC this season, extending his own lead on the event leaderboard.

Willingham cleared 4.01 meters (13-1.75) on his first attempt at the height to best the pole vault field. The win is also his first mark as a Bruin.

Belmont had four other silver finishers as well as two third places. Senior Caleb Corprew (Midwest City, Okla.) led that group by taking second in the 110-meter hurdles in 14.54 seconds, extending his lead as fastest in the conference in the race. 

Senior Matt Walker (Southlake, Texas) took second in the javelin with a throw of 50.06 (164-3), senior Matt Edwards (Glamorgan, Wales) was second in the 1,500-meter race in 3:54.05 and freshman Cal Widener (Elmhurst, Ill.) was shot put runner-up to Claiborne at 15.86 (52-0.5).

Junior Stephen Gibson (Tuscola, Ill.) was third in the discus in 44.51 (146-0) and junior Ryan Lipe (Franklin, Tenn.) took third in the pole vault at 3.71 (12-2).

"It was nice to finally have a warm day for a meet and it was good to get some races against conference foes," said Belmont Associate Head Track Coach Cameron Harvey of the meet. "It's a real chance to see where we measure up a month out from outdoor championships."

Belmont returns to the track next week with the majority of its squad headed to Atlanta, Ga., for the Georgia Tech Invitational on Friday and Saturday. The Ohio Valley Conference Outdoor Championships will be May 10-12 at Cookeville, Tenn.




12. Ryan Teague, so. — 22.02

15. Seth Randall, so. — 22.45*

17. Jared DeVore, fr. — 22.59

26. Andrew Garcia, jr. — 23.34


1. Nate Nammour, jr. — 47.85

4. Caleb Corprew, sr. — 48.66*

6. Ryan Teague, so. — 49.11

15. Drake Mitchell, so. — 51.42*

17. Kaden Kieffer, so. — 52.33

19. Timothy Cody, fr. — 52.81*


4. Christian Gonzales, so. — 1:56.15

26. Anthony Didion, sr. — 2:07.00


2. Matt Edwards, sr. — 3:54.05

4. Taylor Vroon, fr. — 4:03.40*

5. Declan McManus, so. — 4:04.09

7. Ben Williams, so. —4:06.46*

8. Jackson Vroon, fr. — 4:07.16*

11. Daniel White, fr. — 4:09.47*

110 hurdles

2. Caleb Corprew, sr. — 14.54

7. Alex Miller, so. — 15.48

400 hurdles

5. Christian Crenshaw, sr. — 56.97

7. Khristian Vickers, fr. — 1:00.51

4x100 relay

6. Belmont (Hayden Stover, Seth Randall, Jared DeVore, Andrew Garcia), 46.90

Pole vault

1. Bobby Willingham, fr. — 4.01m (13-1.75)

3. Ryan Lipe, jr. — 3.71m (12-2)

6. Drake Mitchell, so. — 3.26m (10-8.25)*

Shot put

1. Corey Claiborne, jr. — 17.42m (57-2)*^

2. Cal Widener, fr. — 15.86m (52-0.5)*

13. Ryan Sheldon, fr. — 11.74m (38-6.25)


1. Corey Claiborne, jr. — 47.00m (154-2)*

3. Stephen Gibson, jr. — 44.51 (146-0)

5. Ryan Sheldon, fr. — 42.43m (139-2)*

6. Cal Widener, fr. — 42.05m (137-11)

18. Ryan Lipe, jr. — 32.74m (107-05)

20. Drake Mitchell, so. — 30.16m (98-11)*


2. Matt Walker, sr. — 50.06m (164-3)

*Personal record

^School record