Feb. 2, 2013
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -
The Virginia men's and women's track and field teams had strong performances Saturday at the Sykes-Sabock Challenge Cup on the campus of Penn State. In an event that featured 12 men's squads and 13 women's squads, the Cavaliers won six events as the women finished third at the meet and the men finished fourth.
"This was the best, competitive, performance we have had since I have been here," said head coach Bryan Fetzer, "We are starting to learn how to compete under adverse situations and step up when we need to step up. The other thing that was really good about today was they are starting to come together as a group and starting to learn that the more they support each other, the better they will perform."
The Cavaliers took both 400m titles, with Payton Hazzard winning men's race at 47.17, the second-fastest indoor time in school history. Jordan Lavender won the women's 400m title in 54.69, matching her personal record. Virginia had the top two finishers in the men's mile, with Mark Amirault winning at 4:03.40 and Taylor Gilland following at 4:04.70. Amirault's time is the sixth fastest in school history. Ryan Satchell won the men's triple jump with a personal record of 50'8.75", the sixth best mark in school history. Natalia Kuhn won the women's 600m at 1:32.88 and Barbara Strehler took the women's 3000m title with a personal record of 9:41.14
In the women's high jump, the Cavaliers finished second and third with Pearl Bickersteth
and Moira Cronin
both jumping 5'8.75". The mark was a collegiate best for Cronin. The women's team also got strong performances from Dallas Rose
, who finished second in the long jump at 41' 7.25"; Vicky Fouhy
, who had the ninth fastest indoor 800m in school history at 2:10.17, and Lavender, who finished third in the 200m at 24.43.
Other top men's performances included Drequan Hoskey who made his collegiate indoor track debut with the school's fifth fastest time in the 60m hurdles with a time of 8.06 in the preliminaries. Brandon Burton was second in the 600m at 1:19.85 and Matt Armentrout matched his personal record of 15'3" to finish fifth in the pole vault.
"We had some individuals have some great performances today," said Fetzer. "When you have lifetime best performances at this point in the year, that is fantastic. It is a good start since we are getting into the championship phase of competition. To come to Penn State and compete like we did against the strong teams in this meet is very, very good."
Next weekend the Cavaliers will split up for two meets, the Virginia Tech Elite Meet (Feb. 8-9) in Blacksburg, and Husky Classic (Feb. 8-9) in Seattle, Wash.