UA men finish seventh at NCAA championships
DES MOINES, Iowa -- Arizona's men’s and women’s track and field teams wrapped up competition at the NCAA championships Saturday, with the men finishing in seventh place overall and the women finishing 19th.
On the men's side, Florida won the title with 50 points, LSU took second with 48 points. Texas A&M came in third with 40 points, Florida State had 38 points and Virginia Tech took fifth with 33 points. Arizona had 27 points.
On the women’s side, LSU won with 72 points, Oregon took second place with 62 points. Texas A&M was third with 38 points and Clemson and Kansas tied for fourth place with 28 points. Arizona had 15 points.
"To culminate the season with a top 10 finish on the men’s side and to be No. 7 is definitely a satisfying feeling, it’s a happy feeling,” head coach Fred Harvey said. “We felt that we had an opportunity to be higher and get one of those big trophies, but it’s still good that we came out of here as the No. 7 team in the country.
"For the women’s team, with the mishaps that we had and for us to be able to fight back on this final day and put us in the top 20, you’re always excited about that. Our goal is to always be a top-20 program. Overall, our final day was a success for the University of Arizona and the athletic department.”
The quartet of sophomore Shapri Romero, senior Echos Blevins, sophomore Tamara Pridgett and junior Georganne Moline took sixth place in the women’s 4x400-meter relay with a time of 3:31.55. They tacked on three points to the women’s total score and earned All-America honors. Romero clocked a split of 52.55, Blevins split at 52.28, Pridgett had a time of 54.80 and Moline anchored at 51.72. The same 4x400 quartet won the Pac-12 title and also set the school record, taking first place in all but two races.
“It was such a good field,” Moline said. “I felt bad because when Tamara (Pridgett) was trying to hand it off to me, she had to slow down and run over to me because I couldn’t move on the line. Since it was such a good a field, positioning was difficult, and that probably cost a few seconds. But it was a great experience for us going forward.”
Added Harvey: "They ran the second-fastest time in the history of our institution, and I can’t be mad about that."
Sophomore Bozidar Antunovic earned All-America honors in the men’s shot put for the second straight year. He had a toss of 64-0.25 (19.51m), the second-best mark of his career. Antunovic was the runner-up in the event at the Pac-12 championships and also earned all-conference honors in the discus.
Sophomore Lawi Lalang earned an 11th-place finish in the men’s 1,500-meter race Saturday, clocking a time of 3:46.82. Lalang, a sophomore, previously won the NCAA cross country championship as well as the NCAA indoor championship in the 3K and 5K, set the collegiate indoor record in the 5K and was an All-American in the outdoor 5K. Lalang also set four school records during the 2012 track season, three indoor (mile, 3K and 5K) and one outdoor (1,500 meters).
Sophomore Elvin Kibet clocked a time of 16:39.72 in the women’s 5,000-meter race, good for 11th place. Kibet earned All-America honors in the 10K this year and earned all-conference honors in the 5K and 10K.