College roundup: Lieberman captures conference pole vault title

Former Polk County standout Troy Lieberman

Montreat College freshman and former Polk County standout Troy Lieberman captured the pole vault title at Friday’s Appalachian Athletic Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships at JDL Fast Track in Winston-Salem.

Lieberman cleared 14-1 1/4, setting a school record in the process, in helping lead Montreat to the AAC title. The Cavaliers entered the meet as the top-ranked NAIA team in the South Region.

Another former Wolverine, Eli Hall, placed third in the 1000 meters with a personal-best time of 2:41.63 and helped the Cavalier 4×800-meter relay squad placed second with a time of 8:42.03. Hall also took 10th in the 600 meters with a time of 1:29.81.

For Lieberman, the conference title offered a small bit of redemption as he finished ahead of teammate Tyler Fitzgerald, who as a member of Surry Central’s squad last year defeated Lieberman in both the state indoor and outdoor high school championships.

A look at how other former Polk County athletes have fared this winter:

COKER BASKETBALL: Coker sophomore Hayley Kropp continues to lead the Cobras in scoring.

Entering Saturday’s home regular-season finale against Lincoln Memorial, Kropp is averaging 11.3 points per game while also grabbing 2.8 rebounds per game. She has started every game since Dec. 13 for the 8-15 Cobras.

Kropp ranks fourth in the South Atlantic Conference in 3-pointers per game (2.0) and 18th in scoring.

APPALACHIAN STATE INDOOR TRACK: Appalachian State sophomore Sean Doyle finished 5th in the 800 meters at the VMI Winter Relays, held Feb. 9-10.

Doyle posted a time of 1:56.97 in the event.

He also ran a personal-best 4:32.14 in the mile during a meet in December.

GARDNER-WEBB INDOOR TRACK: Gardner-Webb sophomore Mitchell Brown also competed in the VMI Winter Relays, posting a personal-best time of 9:14.13 in the 3000 meters at the event.

At the Art and Linda Maillet UNC Open in Chapel Hill earlier this season, Brown completed the mile in 4:36.07.

WINGATE TRACK: Wingate senior J.C. Suddeth also enjoyed a successful VMI Winter Relays, placing ninth in the weight throw with a toss of 46-2.

Suddeth set a personal best in the event at the Wake Forest Invitational earlier this season with a throw of 47-2.

LEES-MCRAE TRACK: It has been a busy indoor season for Lees-McRae senior Matthew Darden, as evidenced by his effort at the Buccaneer Track and Field Invitational in early February.

Darden competed in the 60-meter dash, 200 meters, 400 meters and 4×400-meter relay at the event. The relay team posted a season-best time of 3:33.77 in the event.

Darden has also long jumped during the current indoor season.