Lobo Track & Field Shines at Don Kirby Tailwind Invitational
April 6, 2013
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — At their only home meet of the season, the Lobos made sure they got plenty of home cooking.
The University of New Mexico track and field team produced a stellar team performance on Saturday at the Don Kirby Tailwind Invitational, notching 55 top-10 marks at the Lobos' sole meet in Albuquerque.
With sensational weather throughout the day at the Great Friends of UNM Track & Field Stadium, New Mexico posted an equally sensational showing, scoring a top-10 finish in all but one the events in which it competed.
“It really was a good day,” UNM head coach Joe Franklin said. “… Across the board, it was a really solid meet.”
As over 3,000 spectators watched during both Friday's high school meet, the Rio Rancho High School Invitational, and Saturday's meet, the Lobos finally came together completely as a team for the first time since the Mountain West Indoor Championships in February.
“I would consider this one our first meet of the year,” Franklin said. “And we had some very positive things happen today that get me excited for the next six weeks.”
The women's pole vault was just an example of some of the very positive things, as Amber Menke led five women with superlative marks.
Menke's leap of 13-feet, 1 ½-inch won the event, with Margo Tucker's vault of 12-9 ½ close behind in third place. Emily Heisler (11-9 ¾), Nathalie Busk (11-9 ¾), Annie Stirling (11-3 ¾) and Julia Cook (11-3 ¾) placed fifth through eighth, respectively, to round out the women's vaulters.
The javelin throw produced another individual champion, as Lexi Ross tossed the spear 142-5 to claim victory. Once again, the Lobos strung together consecutive finishers, as Samantha Bowe (108-4), Kelsea Hawkins (107-2) and Holly Van Grinsven (93-9) placed eighth through 10th, respectively.
The rest of the women's field athletes were also successful, including in the horizontal jumps where Yeshemabet Turner picked up two second-place finishes and personal records. In the long jump, Turner leaped 19-8 ¾ and posted a 40-7 leap in the triple jump.
The final women's field athlete, Marin Schweigert, notched a fourth-place clearance of 5 ¼ in the women's high jump.
Like the women, the men's field athletes had superb performances, including a pair of victories from the horizontal jumps.
On top of that, Markus Miller tied for second in the high jump, reaching 6-4.
The women's track events were more of the same, adding another 20 top-10 finishes to the Lobos' tally.
Four New Mexico athletes set new personal records in the sprints, led by Zoe Howell's third-place clocking in the 400-meter dash.
Howell's time of 56.59 seconds paced five women quartermilers in the top-10, with Jasmin McCray (58.73) in fifth, Lucretia Vigil (59.37) in sixth, Christina Clark (personal-record 1:00.23) in seventh and Mackenzie Kerr (1:01.85) in 10th.
Kayla Fisher-Taylor and Marler also set new personal records in the 100, as Fisher-Taylor finished in 11.95 to place eighth and Marler in 12.22 to place 10th.
The three women's hurdlers that competed Saturday added more strong times. 100-meter hurdlers Precious Selmon (14.54) and Van Grinsven (16.31) placed third and 10th, respectively, while 400 hurdler Haley Sanner claimed second with a personal-record time of 1:02.89.
The mid-distance and distance runners joined in on the action, too.
The Lobos relays teams also performed well, with the 4x400 A team of Howell, McCray, Brazley and Pitts taking second; the 4x400 B team of Clark, Sanner, Kerr and Vigil finishing fifth; and the 4x100 team of Fisher-Taylor, Turner, Dowling and Marler placing third.
For the men's runners, the Lobos recorded more top-10 marks, bringing in another 10 from the track.
The handful of Lobo sprinters competing shined, as Kendall Spencer (10.55 time) placed fourth in the 100, Derek Montoya (21.61) finished eighth in the 200 and Chris Kline (49.17) took fourth in the 400.
De'Vron Walker nabbed a fourth-place time in the 110 hurdles as well, finishing in 14.98.
The mid-distance chipped in two more solid times, including a victory from Gabe Aragon. Aragon clocked a 1:51.60 time in the 800 to seize victory, and was followed up by Alex Herring's eighth-place time of 1:53.29 in placing top-10.
The men's relay teams also did well, as the 4x100 team of Thomas Trujillo, Montoya, Smith and Spencer won and the 4x400 team of Montoya, Kline, Aragon and Herring placed second.
Next week, the Lobos will head to Colorado Springs, Colo., as the take on the Air Force Academy in New Mexico first dual meet under Franklin. The meet will held Friday, April 12 at the Cadet Field House.