Miami track team excels in Kentucky among strong competition

The Miami track and field team had a strong showing in a loaded field at the Rod McCravy Memorial Track and Field Meet in Lexington, Kentucky this weekend. It was a surprisingly talented field for the second week of the indoor track season.

The Hurricanes faced a 15-team field featuring defending men’s and women’s indoor NCAA champion Oregon, SEC women’s champion Florida, SEC men’s champion Arkansas, Big XII women’s champion Texas, and ACC men’s and women’s champion Florida State.

Sophomore Shakima Wimbley broke the Univeristy of Miami record in the women’s 400m, posting a time of 51.82 seconds. Wimbley, who finished second, ran the second-fastest time recorded this NCAA season.

The women’s 4x400m team, which won last week at the Nittany Lion Challenge in State College, Pennsylvania, again performed well. The experienced combination of Wimbley, senior Taneisha Cordell, redshirt junior Kelsey Balkwill and redshirt senior Thandi Stewart finished fourth but motored to a season-best time of 3:34.88.

Talented junior jumper John-Patrick Friday broke his own school record in the indoor triple jump over the weekend. Friday jumped 15.77m, besting his previous mark of 15.47m. Friday finished third overall in the triple jump, behind two jumpers from the University of Florida, and also placed fifth in the high jump with a mark of 2.04m.

The men’s 4x400m team, which also won last week, ran a season-best 3:12:78. Junior Joseph Ryan, freshman Robert Grant, senior Anthony Wolliston and freshman Henri Delauze ran a time that is fourth-fastest in UM history, and look to be a unit that can improve as the season progresses.

Sophomore shot putter Gian Piero Ragonesi, who placed second last week, set a season-best with a throw of 17.05m. Ragonesi finished 17th. Miami’s defending ACC shot put champion Isaiah Simmons has not thrown this year.

Several members of the Hurricanes football team competed this weekend in Lexington as well.

Junior cornerback Tracy Howard ran in the 60m dash. Howard finished 36 out of 37 competitors in the preliminary rounds with a time of 7.29 seconds in his first competition of the season. Five-foot-5 redshirt freshman defensive back Josh Johnson finished 26th in the men’s 200m, covering the distance in 22.17 seconds.

Freshman wide receiver David Njoku, sophomore cornerback Artie Burns and sophomore running back Walter Tucker have yet to compete.