New York, N.Y. – The University of Arizona Wildcat No. 8 men’s and women’s track and field wrapped up competition this weekend at the Armory Collegiate Invitational and the Mountain T’s Invitational. The Armory Collegiate Invitational took place in New York, N.Y. The Mountain T’s Invitational was held at J.L. Walkup Skydome in Flagstaff, Ariz.
Senior Shapri Romero clocked a personal-best time of 52.82 in the 400-meter sprint; good for first place overall in the championship section. Her time is also the No. 5 time in the country this season. She has clocked personal-best times in her last three 400-meter races. On the men’s side, freshman Miles Parish also won the 400-meter sprint championship section. He clocked a time of 47.23, the second-best time of his career.
“I felt really good,” Romero said. “I just wanted to repeat what I did yesterday with a few minor adjustments. We wanted to open up my hands so I would use my arms more because I was getting a lot of upper-body rotation yesterday. That definitely helped and I ran a lot more efficient. It was really exciting for coach (Francesca) Green and I, it was our plan for me to be feeling really good at this meet. We’ve been grinding through the other meets and I haven’t been feeling my best so to clock two personal bests in one weekend, in New York, at The Armory, was really exciting and shoed that I’m on my way.”
The quartet of sophomore Nnenya Hailey, freshman Jasper Gray, senior Tamara Pridgett and Romero earned a second-place finish in the women’s 4x400-meter relay championship section. The quartet clocked a season-best time of 3:38.46 with Romero clocking a 400-meter split of 51.91. Romero ran down Arkansas and Harvard and was able earn a second-place finish for the Wildcats. That time currently ranks as the No. 16 mark in the country.
“After the 400 meters, I didn’t realize how close the 4x400-meter relay was,” Romero said. “So I didn’t really do anything, I was already pretty warm. Nnenya had a really good leg, we’re trying to help her run on the bank, which takes a lot of strategy and she’s the one who has to cut in. So she did really well. Jasper was able to maintain and then Tamara ran a really good leg too. When I got the stick in second-to-last place, the run, it caught me off-guard. I didn’t know where it came from, I’m pretty sure it was Jesus.”
Senior Nick Ross won his third-straight meet in the 2014 indoor season. Ross, a member of The Bowerman Watch List, the award for collegiate track and field’s most outstanding athlete, won at The Armory on Saturday with a clearance of 7-5 (2.26m). He had three strong attempts at 7-7.25 (2.32m), an attempt to improve his collegiate-leading mark of 7-7 (2.31m), also a school record. In the men’s triple jump competition, junior Jovon Cunningham posted a mark of 49-4.25 (15.04m), good for seventh place overall. Freshman Jordan Young took second place in the men’s weight throw with a toss of 68-7 (20.90m).
Junior Sam Macaluso clocked a personal-best time of 8:05.87 in the men’s 3K and earned a fifth-place finish in the championship section. Macaluso hails from West Windsor, N.J. and got the chance to compete in front of his family and friends for the first time in years. His time stands as the No. 28 time in the country excluding results from the around the country on Saturday. In the women’s 800-meter race, senior Meg Bellino clocked a season-best time of 2:09.47 and earned a fifth-place finish overall. Junior Kate Penney clocked a time of 4:52.18 in the mile.
“We learned a lot this weekend,” head coach Fred Harvey said. “The warm-up situation, the ring situation for the throwers, learning how to work through those things and be able to be competitive is important. As a team, looking at the meet, the takeaway for me is that there are still things we have to get better at. Some of our distance runners are really talented but they had some adversity this weekend. I’m confident in them that those things will get worked out. Moving into the next couple of weeks, we have to get back to work once we get back to Tucson. We have to get focused and continue to grow.”
In Flagstaff, junior Pau Tonnesen had a season-best score in the men’s heptathlon. He earned a first-place finish with a score of 5,328, the No. 22 mark in the country. He threw 42-2 (12.85m) in the shot put, good for 658 points. He long jumped 22-1.5 (6.74m) and scored 753 points. He cleared 16-4.75 (5.00m) in the pole vault, a personal-best mark that counted for 910 points. He cleared 6-9.5 (2.07m) in the high jump, 868 points to his final score. He ran 8.61 in the 60-meter hurdles, tallying 834 points. He ran the 1,000-meter race in 3:09.20 and scored 577 points. Tonnesen’s time of 7.43 in the 60-meter dash was good for 736 points.
For complete results from the meet and continued coverage of Arizona Wildcat men’s and women’s track and field, visit ArizonaWildcats.com and follow @ArizonaTrack on Twitter.