Feb. 14, 2005

Windsor, Ont. – The Notre Dame men’s and women’s track and field teams won six events as the women’s team placed third in the team standings and the men were fourth overall at the Windsor Team Challenge, hosted by the University of Windsor on Saturday, February 12. Irish sprinter Maryann Erigha won two events – the 60-meter dash and the 300-meter dash – to lead the way.

An abbreviated Irish squad of 25 athletes made the trip to Windsor, Ontario, Canada to compete in the meet. The teams, which consisted mostly of sprinters, took the opportunity to tune up for the BIG EAST Conference Championships to be held this weekend at Syracuse. The Windsor track is comparable in size and shape to the one in Syracuse, affording the Irish sprint corps its first opportunity to race on a track of that scope.

Erigha led the Irish women with a pair of sprint victories. In the women’s 60, Notre Dame’s Maryann Erigha (the BIG EAST’s fastest 60 sprinter this season with a best of 7.47 earlier this season) won the event in 7.53, edging her teammate Brienne Davis who placed second in 7.70. Domenique Manning of Notre Dame was fourth in 7.92. All three sprinters are among the top 24 qualifiers in the 60 for the BIG EAST Championships. Erigha also took top honors in the 300, breaking the tape in 39.45 seconds to nip teammate Okechi Obbuokiri (39.47) by .02 of a second. Brienne Davis was seventh in 42.36 with Jennifer Leong placing eighth in 42.89.

Notre Dame’s Tiffany Gunn brought home a victory in the 600 meters, clocking 1:35.07 to take the win. Teammate Crysta Swayzer was third in 1:36.04. A pair of BIG EAST qualifiers in the 1,000 meters highlighted other notable Irish finishers on the women’s side as Rachel Heneghan (second place in 2:57.01) and Becky Antas (sixth in 2:59.58) led the way.

The Irish men were led by strong showings in the 60-meter dash, the 60-meter high hurdles and the 600-meter run. Notre Dame’s Dwight Ellick won the men’s 60 in a time of 6.81 seconds, his fastest time of the season and the fastest in the BIG EAST this season. Irish freshman Terrail Lambert also improved his BIG EAST qualifying time by almost a full tenth of a second, placing second behind Ellick in another ’05 seasonal best of 6.84. Tommie Lee of Notre Dame was fifth in a time of 7.11.

Notre Dame’s star hurdler Selim Nurudeen won the 60-meter hurdles in a time of 7.96 after posting a time of 7.93 in the preliminary heats. Nurudeen’s performance was well of his ’05 best of 7.81 (the BIG EAST’s best mark in ’05), but he did show good form and looks ready to defend his conference title in the event. Other Notre Dame finishers in the hurdles were Geoff Bennett (second, 8.24) and Jose Genao (fourth, 8.37). All three hurdlers are qualified in the event for the BIG EAST meet.

In the men’s 600, Notre Dame’s Trevor McClain-Duer picked up a victory with a time of 1:20.79. Austin Wechter was third for the Irish in 1:22.64.