‘Canes take home three gold medals at ACC Indoor Championships

Photo credit: Miami Athletics

The Miami Hurricanes landed on the podium five times at the 2023 ACC Indoor Championships over the weekend.

The women’s 400m relay took home the gold, thanks to Moriah Oliveira, Blanca Hervas, Kennedy Brace and Sanaa Hebron.

The team’s anchor, Hebron, crossed the finish line just behind Duke’s reigning 400m champion, Megan McGinnis. But in the final meters of the race, McGinnis dropped her baton, and after an official review, it was decided that Miami crossed the line with the baton first. The Hurricanes took the win with a time of 3:32.56.

Hannah Hall was crowned ACC shot put queen with a mark of 17.52m. This was a personal best, facility record and gold-medal performance for Hall and was good enough to qualify her for the NCAA Championships in just under two weeks.

Graduate student Décio Andrade, who was competing in his last ACC Indoor Championships, took home another gold medal. The Portugal native broke the weight throw facility record on his fourth attempt and went on to top that in his final attempt with a mark of 22.52m. The throw broke his previously set program record and crowned him ACC weight throw king.

Junior Russell Robinson will also return to Miami with hardware, having won the silver medal in the men’s triple jump. He posted a distance of 16.29, securing him a spot at the NCAA Championships.

Oliveira was the final ‘Cane to return with a medal, having earned bronze in the women’s 400m dash final. She was just 0.02 seconds behind FSU’s Faith Banks, who took silver, and less than one second behind Duke’s Megan McGinnis, who took the gold.

Sophomore distance runner Ellie Mezzio started the weekend off strong for Miami, earning her a spot in Miami’s all-time top five in the women’s 5000m with a time of 17:44.79 in the prelims.

Oliveira was the next to make the finals in the women’s 200m sprint, after posting a time of 23.78.

Sophomore distance runner Daphnee Lavassas was the first ‘Cane to set a program record, topping her own previous record in the 5000m in 16:18.29. This run gave the Hurricanes their first team points of the championships.

On day two, graduate students Rachel Robertson and Taylor Write secured the first team points of the day in the women’s high jump. They both posted a final height of 1.74m, which was a season best for Robertson.

Senior Lauryn Harris, graduate student Marquasha Myers and junior Ashley Moore all competed in the women’s long jump, posting distances of 6.00m, 5.99m and 5.97m, respectively.

Senior Sincere Rhea secured his spot in the men’s 60m hurdle finals after posting a preliminary time of 8.09.

Freshman Enrique Borrego proved his place in the men’s one mile with a personal best of 4:12.52.

The Hurricanes dominated the women’s 400m prelims, with Oliveira taking first and smashing the facility record with a time of 52.89. Hervas and Hebron followed closely behind with respective times of 54.07 and 54.29, landing them in fourth and sixth place. All three ran in finals the following day.

Junior distance runner Natalie Varela also secured herself a spot in the women’s 800m on day two. She went on to run a personal best on the final day with a time of 2:06.01 and landed herself at number two on Miami’s indoor 800m record book.

Oskar Bambals mirrored Varela, running a personal best in the men’s 800m and landing himself in second in the men’s 800m record book. He posted a time of 1:47.79 on the final day.

Ayman Zahafi set a facility record in the men’s 800m prelims with a time of 1:48.78. This was later broken by Clemson’s Tarees Rhoden in the finals, where Zahafi came just behind Bambals, with the same time of 1:47.79.

Behind Hall’s first-place finish in the shot put on day three of competition, Erikka Hill and Kristina Rakocevic posted personal bests of 15.71m and 14.44m, respectively, placing them in sixth and 13th place. In between them came Selina Dantzler with a 14.76m throw.

Next up, eligible ‘Canes will participate in the NCAA Indoor Championships, which will be held in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on March 10-11.