Jan. 30, 2014
University Park, Pa. - The University of Pittsburgh men's and women's track and field teams are heading back to State College, Pa. this Friday, January 31st to compete in the two-day Penn State National Invitational. Meanwhile, throws coach Chip Brundage and three student-athletes will travel to compete at the Bob Pollack Classic in Clemson, S.C.
Brittany Lightfoot, Haley Springman and Andrew Wells will represent the Panthers in the two-day competition against ACC foes, Clemson and NC State at the Bob Pollack Classic. On Friday, Lightfoot and Springman will compete in the women's weight throw, while Wells will participate in the same event on the men's side of the competition. For Saturday, only Lightfoot will throw for the Panthers in the shot put event.
Pittsburgh will also be competing alongside other Atlantic Coast Conference members at the PSU National this weekend with Syracuse, Duke, and North Carolina all in attendance.
During Pitt's first appearance at the PSU Relays on January 11th, the men's 4x200M relay team set a new school record of 1:24.91. Carvin Nkanata, Brycen Spratling, Micah Murray and Josh Mindlin teamed up to break the old record of 1:27.00, set in 1995.
On the women's side, 4x800M relay team of Cayla Del Piano, Joslin Sellers, Morgan Perry and Kelsey Metheny outran their competition by taking home first place in the PSU Relays with a time of 9:26.28.
During their most recent trip to Penn State, Pitt men's and women's team broke two school records and set several career best at the Nittany Lion Challenge, on January 18th. Nkanata, Evann Thompson and Spratling highlighted the competition with their record breaking performances. In the 400M dash, Nkanata broke the PSU Challenge record while tying a NCAA top time of 46.36. Nkanata capped it off by also setting a season best en route to finishing first in the 400M.
Thompson outran her competition in the 600M in 1:30.98, while breaking the previous school record set in 2005 of 1:33.12. Spratling also went on to win and break the school record in the 600M dash with a time of 1:19.06. Since set by Dave Moore's run of 1:19.53 in 1989, the record had not been snapped for 25 years.
This weekend, Nkanata will compete in both the men's 60M and 200M dash, while Thompson will race in the women's 800M dash. Spratling will also participate in the 60M and 400M dash events.
The men's 4x4 relay team from the PSU Challenge consisted of Brylan Slay, Murray, Spratling and Desmond Palmer who finished second behind in-state rival Penn State. The Nittany Lions narrowly beat out the Panthers with only 1.97 seconds separating the two. The 4x4 team will get a second chance to take first place overall this coming weekend at Nationals.
In the hurdles, Palmer will look to yet again make the finals in the 60mh, and improve upon his career best of 8.08 set at the last PSU competition. Taranisha Taylor will compete in four events including the women's 60mh, 60M and 200M dash plus the 4x400M relay.
For distance events, Dee Dee Adams, Hillary Boxheimer and Rachel Brown will run in the women's 5K, while Tyler Castelli and Andrew John Chaborek are set to compete in the 1000m run and the distance medley relay.
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Palmer, Tate Advance to Quarterfinals
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Eleven Panthers Qualify for East Region Championships
Palmer Repeats as 400m Hurdle Champion