Des Moines, Iowa - The University of Arizona Wildcat No. 3 men's and No. 10 women's track and field teams wrapped up competition at the second day of the NCAA Track and Field Championships. The meet is hosted by Drake University at Jim Duncan Track and Johnny Bright Field. Competition will continue through June 9.
The women's 4x400-meter relay team of sophomore Shapri Romero, senior Echos Blevins, sophomore Tamara Pridgett and junior Georganne Moline clocked a school-record time of 3:31.06. That time was good for second place in heat one and spot in the final on Saturday at 12:50 p.m. CDT. Romero had a split of 52.81, Blevins had a time 52.54, Pridgett ran 53.75 and Moline anchored with a time of 51.76. The previous school record, 3:31.62, was set on May 14, 2011 in Tucson, Ariz. by alumnus Christina Rodgers, Romero, Blevins and Moline.
"It went really well, I could just tell from the beginning, with Shapri's leg that we were going to get a good time," Moline said. "She looked strong, same with Echos (Blevins) and Tamara (Pridgett) so I was excited. I ran well but I put myself in a bad position. Towards the turn I had to run in lane two or three, that's where my kick comes in so I knew I had to go. It felt so good (to come back today and run well), we just needed second to advance and that's what we did."
"We just really, really wanted it, especially Georganne after her race yesterday," Romero said. "We just did what we've been doing all year, just like coach Harvey had said. I got out like coach Harvey and coach Green had been saying, I had to start it off right. We did well, all of our legs did really well I think. I felt good, I couldn't be more proud. (Going into the final) We feel really confident, we're there now, there's nothing to lose. We just need to go out there and give it our all."
In the women's 10,000 meters, sophomore Elvin Kibet took seventh place with a personal-best time of 33:02.04. That time is also the second-best time in UA history. Kibet earned All-America honors in the event and tacked on two points to the women's total. She will return to the track for the 5K on Saturday at 12:19 p.m. Junior Jen Bergman clocked a time of 33:41.76, good for 12th place in the event. Bergman finished the year as an All-Pac-12 runner in the 10,000 meters and 5,000 meters.
"I got out there and I was really confident," Kibet said. "The last two workouts before this race I felt really good and I knew I was going to have a really good race. I just went out there and I was really confident, I was surprised I had a personal best and I am really happy about it. (Going into the 5K) I have the same confidence and I am really motivated because I didn't know that I was going to do that well (in the 10K) and I'm really excited about it. So I'm just going to go out there relaxed and do my best. It's the last race of the season and I'm just going to have fun."
Junior Nick Ross earned a fourth-place finish in the men's high jump competition with a clearance of 7-4.25 (2.24m). Ross added five points to the men's total score and earned his third-straight All-America honor in the high jump. He will compete in the triple jump on Friday at 4:30 p.m. Junior Edgar Rivera-Morales took 11th place in the high jump with a clearance of 7-2.5 (2.20m). He was an All-Pac-12 honoree and he earned CoSIDA Academic All-District honors on the year.
Sophomore Lawi Lalang took third place in heat two and 11th overall in the men's 1,500-meter race with a time of 3:42.61. That finish was good for a place in the final on Saturday at 11:17 a.m. CDT. Lalang will run the 5K on Friday at 7:10 p.m. along with senior Stephen Sambu.
"I felt good and decided to just take it," Lalang said. "(In the last 100 meters) I was a bit nervous but I knew I would be able to kick with them and just keep it up. I just wanted to make the top five, that's the most important thing right now. (Heading into the 5K) I am confident right now; I think it will be a good race. I will just feel out everybody and see what it feels like. I feel I'm ready."
Senior Taylor Bush threw 202-9 (61.81m) in the women's hammer throw, good for 11th place in the competition. Bush will leave Arizona as the school-record holder in the event with a mark of 209-3 (63.77m). She also earned all-conference honors in 2010, 2011 and 2012.
For the men's team scores, Texas leads with 19 points. Arkansas sits in second place with 16 points. Nebraska holds third place with 14 points. Arizona has 13 points, good for fourth place. Kansas State is in fifth place with 12 points. On the women's side, Stanford is in first with 22 points. Kansas and Oklahoma State are tied for second place with 14 points. Penn State is fourth with 11 points. Five teams are tied for fifth with 10 points. Arizona's only points have been the two scored by Kibet.
Competition will resume on Friday at 2 p.m. CDT.
ESPNU/ESPN3 will televise the final two hours of the meet live from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. PDT on Saturday. ESPN3 will have a live broadcast window beginning on Friday at 3:15 p.m. PDT. In addition, other than ESPNU/ESPN3 windows, there will be a free live web cast of the championships available at www.NCAA.com, which includes early portions of the meet Thursday through Saturday. Live results will be available at flashresults.com.