The Bobcat track and field team broke two more school records Friday and Saturday at the Victor Lopez Classic held at Rice University. So far, the team has surpassed six records during the 2012 indoor and outdoor seasons.
To start the competition Friday, Michelle Jones, middle distance sophomore, took everyone by surprise when she ran the 1,500-meter in 4:32.88. Her time broke a 13-year-old record and landed her in fourth place among 50 competitors.
“I wasn’t expecting to run this time at my first meet of the outdoor season, set a new (personal record) by 11 seconds and set the school record,” she said. “But this boosted my confidence and allows me to set my goals even higher.”
Following Jones’ performance, the men’s 4x100 meter relay team was able to take first place and break another record Saturday. The team, consisting of Timothy Young, James Johnson, Reggie Reed and Brandon Thomas, exceeded the 23-year-old record set in 1989.
Thomas, the only senior of the group, said they used coach Dana Boone’s practice techniques to win the race.
“Boone had us do our relay handoffs at full speed every time,” he said. “It really helped with taking off from our marks on time so that we can get the stick on time and waste little time within the handoff zones.”
The men finished in 40.23 seconds to take the gold. Thomas said they had expected to do this well. He believes they will run an even faster time later in the season.
“I felt good knowing that we broke it our first time running the sprint relay,” he said. “We all jokingly told our coaches to put our names on the record board but not the time, because we plan on running faster as the season presses on.”
The men’s and women’s teams as a whole did exceptionally well at the Victor Lopez Classic. The men came in fifth place out of 22 teams.
Darian Brown, freshman, won first place out of the collegiate throwers in the discus with 52.81 meters. His mark was seven feet farther than his previous throw at the Texas Christian Invitational.
Ben Marvin, senior, placed third for the collegiate competitors with a personal best in the long jump, and James Johnson, sophomore, placed second in the 100-meter dash.
The women’s team grabbed eighth place. Senior Katie Miller placed third out of thirty in the 400-meter hurdles, clocking in at 1:01.37. Danielle Candelaria jumped 1.65 meters in the high jump, finishing third overall and beating thirteen other girls. Boone said she was pleased with the women’s performance and was not expecting the record to be broken by Jones in the 1,500 run.
“I didn’t see that coming, so that was a great thing to see,” she said. “We are proud of her.”