Record breaking day for track and field in Birmingham
Sunday, January 26, 2014
By Mark McGee
Record breaking day for track and field in Birmingham

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – It was a rare Sunday event for the Lipscomb track and field teams, but it was a successful day overall.

Six school records were set at the Emory Crossplex Invitational at the Birmingham Crossplex- Abby McMurray (60 meters), Sarah Browning (pole vault), April Terry (weight throw), Tucker Peabody (60 meters), Wayne Newman (60-meter hurdles) and Gemikal Prude (high jump).

“We made some great progress in the sprints, jumps, throws, vault and hurdles,” coach Bill Taylor said. “We are certainly moving in the right direction. It was a very strong meet that we hope to build on next week at TSU.” 

Sally Larson finished second in a field of 38 runners with a time of 5:05.11 in the one-mile run. Tessa Hoeffle was fifth with a time of 5:17.04.

“Sally tore it up in the mile,” Taylor said. “5:05 is terrific!  And it was her first ever indoor race of her life.  She came back later and ran a 5:01 1,600m to anchor the DMR and give us a come-from-behind victory.  Tessa is already ahead of previous seasons with her mile too.”

Daniel Gardner was the top finisher for Lipscomb in the men’s one-mile run with a time of 4:22.42, good enough for eighth in the field of 49 runners. 

Kenny Smith placed fourth in the 400-meter dash with a time of 50.27. Brian Gentry finished seventh (50.49) and Wayne Newman was 10th (50.70).

Barbara Lee Ball placed third in the women’s 800-meter run with a time of 2:22.60.

Colin Dempster finished third in the men’s 800-meter run with a time of 1:56.63.

Minna Fields and Meredith Kilburn were third (10:20.11) and fourth (10:21.73) respectively in section A of the women’s 3,000 meters.

“Minna and Meredith ran very strong in the 3,000 meters,” Taylor said. “It was the he best season opener for both of them.”

Lipscomb’s team of Hoeffle, Ball, Larson and Bridget Perine placed first in the women’s distance medley with a time of 12:16.58.

“The women's distance runners ran better than I expected,” Taylor said. “I've already mentioned that our distance runners came in with no real speed or quality work. They've just been putting in their miles, building their base.  

“The performances they put up were very good considering.  And we left a lot of our top distance runners home to be safe.”

Christian Freeman was fifth in the men’s 3,000 meters with a time of 8:32.28. Jared Wingerter (9:01.87) was 10th.

“Christian Freeman ran less than two-and-a half seconds from the school record in the 3,000 meters,” Taylor said. “It was an incredibly strong effort for a freshman in his first meet.  Even more impressive is that the distance guys haven't done any real quality workouts yet this season.” 

The men’s distance medley team of Freeman, Newman, Andrew Bosket and Gardner was not outdone, placing first as well with a time of 10:19.93.

The men also won the 4x400 meter relay with a time of 3:21.79. Kenny Smith, Gentry, James Tamburello and Dempster are the runners.

After finishing sixth in the 60-meter dash prelims with a time of 6.94 Peabody came back to finish third in the finals with a time of 6.84.

Peabody finished first in the 200 meters with a meet record of 21.31.

“Tucker is well ahead of where he was last year,” Taylor said. “He's sprinting great. At the same time it feels like a big breakthrough is coming soon for him.” 

Newman was consistent in the 60-meter hurdles. He finished second in the prelims with a time of 8.19 and second in the finals with an 8.24 effort.

“Wayne Newman is a special freshman,” Taylor said. “He leads the Atlantic Sun in the hurdles, and he's going to get so much better.”

One of the highlights for Taylor was the sixth place finish (17:58.88) by Kelsey Ibarra in the 5,000 meters.

“Kelsey ran a relaxed and powerful 5-K,” Taylor said.  “She looked so strong and made smart competitive moves. Her time was a 35-second all-time PR.  That was awesome.”

In field events April Terry placed first out of 31 entrants in the weight throw with an effort of 16.84 meters.

Terry placed third in the shot put with a top try of 12.94 meters.

“April continued her habit of breaking at least one school record each meet,” Taylor said. “She has room to get a lot better in the weight throw even with another record.” 

Browning was second in the women’s pole vault with a 3.25 meters effort.

“Sarah Browning is leading our women vaulters to new heights,” Taylor said. 

Jesse Rowe was second in the men’s weight throw with a 13.30 meter attempt.

Philip Smith finished second in the men’s triple jump with a 13.66 meter effort. Caleb Love was fourth (12.80 meters).

Ki’ana Christy finished sixth in the women’s triple jump with a 10.83 meters attempt.

Prude placed second in the high jump with a 2.13 meter try. Philip Smith was third (2.04 meters).

“Gemikal took another step forward today,” Taylor said. “It's always fun to watch him compete.  We have freshman Philip Smith just behind him too. “

Kevin Floyd was third (4.48 meters) in the pole vault.

“Kevin led the way in the vault,” Taylor said. “That group looking better all the time.”