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JOLIET, Ill. --- Landing a meet-high six individual first-place finishes, University of St. Francis captured its first-ever Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference Men's Outdoor Track & Field Championships crown on Saturday at Joliet Memorial Stadium. The Saints totaled 223 points over the two-day meet to edge out both St. Ambrose University (199 points) and Olivet Nazarene University (199).
The title also gave USF's combined men's cross country and indoor and outdoor track & field programs the trifecta of conference championships for 2016-17.
CCAC Outstanding Field Performer of the Meet Kyle Mitchell (Crest Hill, Ill./ Plainfield Central) played a big role in bringing the outdoor title home after he placed among the top five individuals in three events, highlighted by his championship in the discus with a throw of 156 feet, two inches. He was also second in the shot put with an NAIA "A" standard heave of 54 feet, 2.5 inches and fifth in the hammer throw (153-9).
Junior Jordan Duncan (St. Charles, Ill./ St. Charles East) added 18 points to the Saints' efforts with his first-place performance in the 100-meter dash (10.75 seconds) and runner-up finish in the 200-meter dash with his "A" standard time of 21.36 seconds.
Other individual track event titles went to junior Cam Knudsen (Channahon, Ill./ Minooka) and sophomore Alex Cooper (Marysville, Wash./Lakewood). Knudsen won the 5,000-meter race in 15:13.05, while Cooper did the same in the 3,000-meter steeplechase (9:56.68).
USF's other two individual titles were claimed by sophomore Brandon Ruffin (Peoria, Ill./ Peoria) in the high jump (6 feet, 5 inches) and senior Ryan Bauers (Carol Stream, Ill./ Bartlett) in the hammer throw (158-7).