Tucson, Ariz. – The University of Arizona Wildcat track and field program received another honor from the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches’ Association (USTFCCCA) on Monday. For the second time this season, a Wildcat has been named the Men’s National Athlete of the Week; senior Lawi Lalang was this week’s recipient.
For the third-straight year, Lawi Lalang has had a record-breaking performance at the NYRR Millrose Games at The Armory in New York, N.Y. On Saturday, Feb. 15, Lalang made his season debut in the mile. He earned a second-place finish and clocked a time of 3:52.88 in the Wannamaker Mile. That time is a personal best, school record and a collegiate record. He owns three of the five fastest indoor miles in collegiate history. Lalang set the previous school record in the 2013 Wannamaker Mile with a time of 3:54.56 on Feb. 16. In that same race, Chris O’ Hare (Tulsa) set the collegiate record with a time of 3:52.98. Lalang now holds two indoor collegiate records. His other record also came at the Millrose Games; he ran the 5K in 13:08.28 in 2012. Lalang now has the top collegiate times in the mile and 3K for the 2014 season. Also, The Bowerman Watch Lister's time is No. 2 in the world this year.
“I’m absolutely proud of him,” associate head coach James Li said. “We’ve scheduled this since December and we knew this was a great opportunity. Things went as planned and the main thing I told him, was that he should not feel like an underdog to anybody. Even though a lot of the field had big names, I told him he could do well and that he should take charge if he had to and that’s what he did. He broke the collegiate record but how he did it, he led about 95% of the race excluding the rabbit. He led until the last 50 meters or so. Amongst all those great and accomplished runners, he was able to do that. This is a big step forward for him. To be able to go in there and take charge, it was great, it was a great day.”
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