BEREA, Ohio -- The Monmouth College men’s track team produced its seventh outdoor national champion and eighth overall Saturday at the 2010 NCAA Division III Outdoor Championships in Berea, Ohio.
It took a school record, but junior Tyler Hannam was up to the task and claimed the national championship in the high jump. His winning height of 6’11-1/2 made him the Fighting Scots’ second national champion in that event, following Monmouth’s first national champion, Eric Ealy, in 1986. It’s Hannam’s second All-American award after tying for sixth at the indoor championships in March.
“It’s a long day, long competition,” said Hannam immediately following his title. “I was really nervous this whole weekend. It’s been a really long weekend. I’ve been waiting four days to jump and then today it didn’t help that we had a 45-minute break between jumps. I’m just excited to be here right now. ”
Monmouth’s men made a major move in the final team standings on the final day. Hannam’s win in what turned out to be the final event of the day gave the Scots 18 points and propelled them from the middle of the pack to a tie for 10th.
Hannam, an AlWood High School graduate, will be among the team leaders next year as Monmouth attempts to finish even higher in the standings. But rather than look at team points or where he’ll place individually, Hannam plans a much more simple approach.
“Just taking it one (track) meet at a time,” he said of his expectations. “I want to improve my personal best. I can’t look at it as a track meet, I can’t want to win the meet, I want to improve my personal best.”
He did that in style on Saturday, jumping higher outdoors than he, or any other Monmouth athlete, ever had.