Section: Sports

Gono Phiri breaks decade-old record in 200-meter dash

On Saturday, the Kenyon track and field teams traveled back to Ohio Wesleyan University (OWU) for the second consecutive weekend to compete in the All-Ohio Championship. There, the men’s team placed ninth while the women’s team came in 10th place.  

The men’s team performed well across the board at OWU, earning points from short-distance, mid-distance and field events. Tapiwa Gono Phiri ’25 was one of the brightest spots for the Owls. After placing fourth in the 100-meter dash preliminaries, Gono Phiri bolted his way to first in the finals with a time of 10.84, 0.10 seconds faster than his qualifying time and good enough for a team season-best. Then, in the 200-meter dash, Gono Phiri finished in second place with a time of 21.95 seconds, a new Kenyon outdoor track and field record. 

In an email to the Collegian, Gono Phiri expressed how he felt after he broke a record that stood for almost a decade. “I was humbled by my performance. It opened my eyes and assured me that I am ready to work hard so I run faster.” Looking forward, Gono Phiri is sure he can shorten his 200-meter time. “ I know I can sprint the curve better than I have done, and I’m positive this will improve my time even more.” 

In the same event, Collin Witt ’24 came in seventh place with a time of 22.45, a personal best. In the distance events, Peter Bernhardt ’25 finished fourth in the 1500-meter race with a time of 4:02.24, a new career-best time, while Sam Rabieh ’25 earned seventh place in the 3000-meter steeplechase with a time of 10:26.77. 

On the field, Riley Orth ’24 finished second in the shot put event with a throw of 14.67 meters and then reset the Kenyon hammer-throw record for the second week straight with a distance of 43.95 meters. Finally, in the discus throw, Samuel Eluemunoh ’26 placed sixth with a throw of 40.37 meters, a new personal best for him. 

The women’s team earned 29 points at OWU, with most of them coming on the track. In the 800-meter race, Anna Brown ’26 came in third with a time of 2:20.80, while Logan Vidal ’25 was right behind her with a time of 2:23.28. Both of those times were collegiate-bests for the two runners. Then in the 5000-meter race, Ellianne Retzlaff ’25 came in fourth with a time of 19:49.86, and in the 400-meter hurdles, Maya Virdell ’24 placed fourth with a time of 1:11.12.

On the field, Erika Conant ’23 contributed eight points toward Kenyon’s total in the long jump and triple jump events. In the long jump, Conant finished fourth with a distance of 4.94 meters, before following that up with a 10.30 meter jump in the triple jump, good enough for a sixth-place finish. 

This Saturday, the Owls will compete in the Kenyon Invitational in Gambier — Kenyon’s only home meet of the outdoor season.


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