Feb. 22, 2004
Syracuse, N.Y. – The Notre Dame men’s and women’s track and field teams each finished second at the BIG EAST Track and Field Championships on Sunday at Syracuse’s Carrier Dome. The men came up just seven points short in falling to Connecticut, 160-153. The women were second to the University of Miami as the Hurricanes racked up 170 points to 111 for the Irish.
On the men’s side, the Irish were led by junior Selim Nurudeen who won the BIG EAST title in the 60-meter hurdles as he equaled his BIG EAST and Carrier Dome record of 7.78 seconds. He set the mark in Saturday’s qualifying run. The 7.78 is an NCAA provisional qualifying time and just short of the automatic qualifying time of 7.70. Freshman Geoffrey Bennett finished third in the race in a time 8.19.
Nurudeen also finished third in the 60-meter dash with a time of 6.86 seconds and helped the 4 X 400-meter relay team to a second-place finish. Junior Dwight Ellick also earned points for the Irish with a seventh-place finish as he ran a time of 6.94. Ellick also gave the Irish a third-place finish in the 200-meter dash with a run of 21.70.
Notre Dame’s runners failed to win any other events, but had several top two-three finishes on the day. The Irish had two runners score in the 400-meter dash as sophomore Ryan Postel took second in a time of 47.66 and freshman Jordan Powell was fifth with a time of 49.20.
Freshman Kurt Benninger and junior Eric Morrison gave the Irish a second and third-place finish in the mile run. Benninger was second with a time of 4:08.74 and Morrison was just .42 behind him in third in a time of 4:09.16.
The Irish finished second in the 4 X 400-meter relay as the team of junior Trevor McClain-Duer, freshman Jordan Powell, senior Thomas Dwayne and Nurudeen turned in a time of 3:13.71.
In other track events that saw the Irish pick up points, McClain-Duer was fifth in the 500 meters with a time of 1:03.49. Sophomore Thomas Chamney was eighth in the 800-meter run with a time of 1:58.70. Kevin Somok was fourth for the Irish in the 1,000 meters as he ran the race in a time of 2:25.78 to score five points for the Irish on the afternoon. In the 3000 meters, the Irish placed third, fourth and fifth. Sophomore Kaleb VanOrt took third with a time of 8:18.90. Junior Sean O’Donnell was fourth in 8:19:56 and Benninger took fifth with a time of 8:19.61. Notre Dame’s 4 X 800-meter relay team of Somok, Morrison, senior Ryan Hurd and freshman Todd Ptacek was fourth with a time of 7:42.24.
In the field events, three high jumpers got on the scoreboard for the Irish. Junior Chris Staron led the way with a second-place finish. Staron had a jump of 6′-7″ (2.01 meters). He was followed by junior Ryan Mineburg and freshman Christopher Jacques who finished fifth and sixth with jumps 6′-5″ (1.96 meters.). Mineburg reached the height in fewer jumps to take fifth place.
In the triple jump, senior Godwin Mbagwu turned in his second top-three performance of the weekend with a second-place finish in the triple jump with a leap of 49′-9″ (15.16 meters). Mbagwu was third in the long jump on Saturday.
On the women’s side, the Irish picked up wins in the mile and the 4 X 400-meter relay and took second place in several other events.
Junior Lauren King and senior Megan Johnson finished one-two in the mile run with King winning the race in a time of 4:53.95. Johnson finished less than two seconds behind her at 4:55.57 for her second-place finish. The win for King in the mile was her second consecutive BIG EAST championship in the mile run. King also helped Notre Dame’s 4 X 800-meter relay team to a fourth-place finish.
The 4 X 400-meter relay team of junior Tiffany Gunn, senior Kristen Dodd, freshman Okechi Ogbuokiri and junior Tricia Floyd won the event in a time of 3:45.23, more than 1.5 seconds ahead of second-place Pittsburgh.
Another top performance by Notre Dame came in the high jump where sophomore Stacey Cowan turned in an NCAA provisional jump of 5′-11.5″ (1.82 meters) that gave her second place in the event. Senior Jennifer Kearney was sixth with a jump of 5′-4.5″ (1.64 meters) and freshman Cassie Gullickson tied for 10th after a jump of 5′-2.5″ (1.59 meters). Cowan finished fourth in the pentathlon on Saturday, winning the high-jumping event.
In the 3,000 meters, sophomore Molly Huddle was one of three runners to break the BIG EAST record as she finished third in an NCAA qualifying time of 9:09.34. Her time broke the record of 9:13.11 that was held by Villanova’s Vicki Huber and set in 1988. Kim Smith of Providence and Megan Metcalfe of West Virginia also broke the mark finishing first and second respectively.
Also turning in a second-place finish in the 400-meters was Dodd. She ran an NCAA provisional time of 54.76 while Floyd finished seventh in the race in a time of 57.42.
The 4 X 800-meter relay team led the remaining Irish runners as the team of King, Johnson, freshman Katie DeRusso and junior Kerry Meagher was fourth in a time of 8:59.26. Meagher also took seventh in the 1,000 meters with a time of 2:54.22. Others who scored points on the day for Notre Dame were senior Ayesha Boyd who was sixth in the 200-meter dash with a time of 24.79. In the 500-meter dash, Gunn finished fourth with a time of 1:14.19. Gunn also turned in an eighth-place finish in the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 8.79.
In field events, Gullickson finished sixth in the triple jump with a jump of 39′-1″ (11.91 meters) in her first BIG EAST Championship. Sophomore Meghan Horn scored for the Irish with an eighth-place finish in the shot put after a throw of 44′-10-1/4″ (13.67 meters).
Men's Team Standings
1. Connecticut 1602. Notre Dame 1533. Georgetown 824. Rutgers 795. Virginia Tech 576. Villanova 567. Providence 508. Miami 439. Seton Hall 3810. Pittsburgh 3611. Syracuse 2312. Boston College 2
Women's Team Standings
1. Miami 1792. Notre Dame 1113. Pittsburgh 1024. Georgetown 835. Villanova 556. West Virginia 517. Syracuse 388. Providence 379. Rutgers 2810. Connecticut 2711. Boston College 25.512. Virginia Tech 2213. Seton Hall 19.514. St. John's 11