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Hutch CC Track’s Johnson Captures NJCAA National Pole Vault Title


By Hutchinson CC Sports Information

MONROE, Louisiana ( – Hutchinson Community College freshman track and field athlete Chris Johnson capped off a season with PRs, event championships and school records with a most coveted prize on Friday the University of Louisiana-Monroe.

A national championship.

Johnson became the third Blue Dragon pole vaulter in team history win an NJCAA national title on Friday, clearing a school-record 16 feet, 8 1/2 inches.

NJCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships – Day 3
When: Saturday, May 17, 2024
Where: University of Louisiana-Monroe; Monroe, LA
Time: 10:00 a.m.
Video: NJCAA TV (Pay-Per-View)
Live Results: Adkins Trak Timing Associates
X: @bluedragonsport

With only two vaulters – Johnson and South Plains’ Ajengo Segovia – remaining at 16-3 1/2 inches, both had two missed at that height. Segovia missed, but Johnson earned that height on his final attempt to clinch the national title.

Johnson made his school-record height of 16-8 1/2 on his first attempt, but missed all three times with the bar at 17 feet.

Johnson is the first Blue Dragon individual outdoor national champion which Richard Newman won the high jump in 2019. He is the first pole vault national champion since 1986 when Randy Bryant won the championship. Johnson joins Bryant and Michael Patton (1976) as Blue Dragon pole vault national champions.

Johnson is the 53rd overall individual national champion in Blue Dragon men’s track and field history.

Johnson’s 10 points scored on Friday vaulted the Blue Dragons into 10th place after Day 2 with 14 points. Iowa Western leads the men’s title chase with 52 points. Barton is right behind with 51 points.

Sophomore Christopher Brown scored two points with a seventh-place performance in the discus on Friday. Brown posted a PR with a heave of 170 feet, 1 inch, which ranks fifth in Blue Dragon history. Brown didn’t qualify in the shot put with a 10-place finish and threw of 50 feet, 11 inches.

The Blue Dragon 4×400 relay just missed qualifying for Saturday’s finals with a ninth-place time of 3:13.11. The relay team of Rickyle Telemaque, D’Antonio Warren, Elijah Williams and David Thid posted the second-best time in Blue Dragon history.

Other Blue Dragon performances on Friday:
+ Christian Darrah posted a personal best time in the 3,000-meter steeplechase with a 15th-place time of 9:39.65, the 10th fastest time in team history.

+ Leo LeGrand missed qualifying for the finals in the 800-meter preliminaries with a time of 1:52.16.

+ Sprinters Ezekiel Seamster and Warren both missed qualifying for the finals in the 100 and 200 meters. Seamster was 12th in the 100 at 10.45 seconds and 17th in the 200 at 21.41 seconds. Warren was 29th in the 100 meters in a time of 10.72 seconds and 18th in the 200 meters at 21.42 seconds.

+ Ty’Rique Roland placed 11th in the high jump on Friday at 6 feet, 5 1/2 inches.

The Blue Dragons close out the 2024 NJCAA championships on Saturday with Jack Losew, ranked sixth in the NJCAA, and Noah Raigozain the javelin throw at 10 a.m., the nation’s No. 1 400-meter hurdler, Thid, running in the finals at 2:55 p.m. and Titus Kiprotich and Farrin Mangelson running in the 5,000 meters at 3:50 p.m.