Feb. 6, 2014
University Park, Pa. – A pair of University of Pittsburgh Track and Field school records fell last weekend at the Penn State Nationals.
Senior sprinter Carvin Nkanata set a new school record in the 200M dash with a time of 20.99 seconds, earning first place in the event and putting his name in the Pitt record book for a fifth time. Nkanata now owns two individual Pitt school records (200M indoor and 300M indoor), as well as three relay team school records (4x200M indoor, 4x200M outdoor and 4x400M outdoor).
“Carvin is a really good kid,” Head Coach Alonzo Webb said. “He is so laid back but when you see him walking around, you wouldn’t know he was one of the top athletes in the country. He just focuses on his work. I know how passionate he is about running and he is determined to make a career out of this.”
Nkanata’s time narrowly edged Brycen Spratling’s previous school record in the 200M (21.01), which was set in 2013, and Nkanata currently ranks No. 10 in the nation in the 200M dash.
“Carvin is really focused this year and based off of what he did last season; he is the one of the top 200M runners in the country,” Webb added. “He has a lot to live up to. He wants to do the best that he can now, because he is trying to run post-collegiately when he leaves Pitt.”
Sophomore Taranisha Taylor also broke a school record at the Penn State National Invitational, finishing the 60M hurdles in 8.32 seconds during a semifinal heat to put her name in the school record book for the first time.
“It was really a big accomplishment for Taranisha to break a school record as a sophomore,” Webb said. “I see the work she puts in and the determination she has been showing is really impressive. Even more impressive, Taranisha was dealing with a hamstring injury, but then she came back and broke the school record in the following week. Taranisha is really excited, and is looking forward to accomplishing even greater things in the future. I am really happy for her.”
Taylor beat Mycaiah Clemons’ longstanding school record in the 60M hurdles (8.37 seconds) that had stood since 2008.
“Taranisha is such a competitive person and she wants to be the best,” Webb added. “She will put the work in and do whatever is asked of her. She is so focused and dedicated to her craft. What is different about Taranisha is that she believes in herself and wants to do well.”
Nkanata and Taylor will next compete at the Armory Collegiate Invitational this Friday and Saturday in New York. For the latest updates, fans can follow @PittTFandXC on Twitter or ‘like’ us on Facebook under Pitt Track and Field.