Busy Weekend Ahead for Redbird Track & Field
April 19, 2012
Illinois State @ Mt. SAC Relays | Lenny Lyles Invitational | Vanderbilt Invite
NORMAL, Ill. - The Illinois State men's and No. 25-ranked women's track & field teams split off this weekend to compete in three different meets. The women's distance crew heads to Walnut, Calif., to compete in the Mt. SAC Relays, while the rest of the team heads to Louisville, Ky., for the Lenny Lyles Invitational, before shipping up to Nashville, Tenn., for the Vanderbilt Invite.
Competing in the prestigious Mt. SAC Relays, Thursday, will be the 2012 NCAA Runner-up in the indoor mile, Aisha Praught, who has only competed in one meet thus far this outdoor season. Joining her in California is Elise Sigg, Kristen Zillmer, and Jon Roberts. Praught and Zillmer will partake in the steeplechase event, Sigg will take to the start in the 10,000-meter run, while Roberts will hurdle the barriers for the men's squad in the steeplechase.
Three time zones away, the rest of the team heads down to Kentucky to compete in a quad meet on Friday, against the likes of Southeast Missouri, Western Kentucky and Louisville. Last week, the Redbirds were in action at the Sea Ray Relays, where defending NCAA Champion and No. 1 ranked javelin thrower Tim Glover and the No. 1 ranked female shot putter, Brittany Smith, each took first-place, and were named recipients of the Tony Wilson Award, which is given to the four best track & field athletes of the meet.
In the process, Glover broke the Illinois State, Missouri Valley Conference and Sea Ray Relays record, throwing 266-09, and moving up to the No. 9 all-time performer spot in NCAA history. Likewise, Smith broke the Illinois State shot put record with a throw of 58-09.50, and was just two inches off the MVC record of 58-11.50. She ranks in the top-10 in the nation in all three of her disciplines (SP-1st, HT-6th and DT-7th).
Other top performers from the meet included All-American Leigh Petranoff in the javelin, who won the event with a mark of 160-01. She currently sits in third in the NCAA with a personal-best mark of 173-03. Sade Sealy continued her successes on the track, winning the 400-meter Sea Ray Showcase event with a time of 54.06, while also running the anchor leg of the winning 4X400-meter relay that posted a time of 3:42.54.
On the men's side, Curt Jensen continued his stellar junior campaign, winning both the shot put and discus competitions with marks of 59-09.00 and 150-04, respectively. His shot-put mark was a career-best and tied the Illinois State record set by Rhett Hillard in 2005. On the track, freshman Ryan Rutherford made his debut in the 10,000-meter run, taking second place with a time of 30:34.66, ranking him first in the MVC.
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