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Thursday, December 18, 2014

Track and Field: Shorthanded Lobos post high in invitational

Men’s and Women’s teams win 10 events at Don Kirby Tailwind Open

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Only two men’s teams and five women’s programs competed at Friday’s Don Kirby Tailwind Open, but the Lobos still posted strong marks.

UNM competed against New Mexico State, UTEP, New Mexico Highland and the New Mexico Military Institute. The women battled in a triangular meet while the Lobos and Miners held a dual because NMSU and NMMI do not have men’s track programs.

Despite the smaller field, UNM head coach Joe Franklin said the meet remained competitive.

“I think it was an absolutely fantastic competition across the board,” Franklin said. “Great marks across the board. People ran well; they did great things.”

In all, nine UNM athletes hit personal-best marks, including four in the sprint events.

Haley Sanner ran the 400-meter dash in 54.93 seconds, recording the eighth-best time in school history. Holly Van Grinsven clocked 14.09 in the 100-meter hurdles for a new PR. Her mark now ranks sixth in UNM’s record books.

Charles Lewis and Chris Kline also ran personal bests in the 400 with times of 47.37 and 47.93, respectively. The men’s duo placed first and second in the event.

Other personal records came from Gabe Aragon, who won the 800 in 1:49; Richard York, who placed second in the javelin with a 210-foot, 4-inch throw; Nik Aston, fourth in the javelin at 179-6; Annie Stirling, second in the pole vault at 12-9 1/2; and Lindsay Read, third in the triple jump at 39-5 3/4.

UNM won five women’s and five men’s events.

Margo Tucker cleared 13-0 3/4 in the pole vault to lead a sweep of the top four spots. Stirling was second with her personal best, followed by Emily Heisler and Nathalie Busk tying for third at 12-3 1/2.

Samantha Bowe posted a 5-3 3/4 leap in the high jump for first place, while Aasha Marler won the long jump with a 19-9 mark and Jannell Hadnot registered a 42-0 3/4 mark in the triple jump.

The UNM relay team of Brittany Myricks, Peri Moran, Sanner and Marler won the 4×100 in 45.58.

In addition to Aragon’s 800-meter win and Lewis’s 400-meter victory, Ridge Jones ran a winning time of 10.57 in the 100 and Loan Pflibsen cleared 16-6 3/4 to take the pole vault.

UNM’s distance runners traveled to Stanford, California, to compete in Sunday night’s Payton Jordan Invite, but those results weren’t available by Daily Lobo press deadline.

Several Lobos will take this week off to prepare for the Mountain West Outdoor Championships on May 14-17, but some will head to Colorado Springs, Colorado, for a final tune-up meet at the Air Force Twilight Invitational. The Lobos will compete for a MW outdoor title after sweeping the indoor crowns two months ago.

“If we can just keep the momentum going and continue to have fun, hopefully we can score a lot of points and challenge for a win (at the MW meet),” Franklin said.