TRACK: Cats finish 3rd at shootout

TRACK: Cats finish 3rd at shootout

TUCSON, AZ - The University of Arizona Wildcat men's and women's track and field teams hosted a top-notch meet on Saturday at Roy P. Drachman Stadium for the Jim Click Shootout. USC (M: 5, W: 7), LSU (M: 4, W: 15), Illinois and Purdue all traveled to Tucson to compete against the Wildcats. The men's team champion was Illinois and on the women's side, LSU was victorious.

The meet was scored for individuals in a 10-8-6-4-2-1 format and 10-8-6-4-2 for relays. On the men's side, Illinois had 181 points for their first-place finish. LSU took second place with 160 points and Arizona finished in third with 121 points.

The women's champion, LSU, scored 169 points in first place. USC had 144 points in second place while the Wildcats had 115 points in third place.

"I thought the Wildcats competed extremely well," head coach Fred Harvey said. "We're seeing some really good things with all the athletes. We're starting to put some things together. We have to keep the ball rolling and get ready for the LSU Alumni Gold Classic and then the Drake Relays."

Sophomore Aaron Castle posted a personal-best mark of 62-3 (18.97m) in the shot put. He took second place overall in the competition and it was the No. 9 toss in UA history and No. 13 mark in the country this year. Sophomore Jonny Giess threw 195-10 (59.68m) in the javelin, No. 2 mark of his career and good for 4th place overall. In the men's hammer, senior Daniel Whitham took fifth place with a personal-best toss of 186-3 (56.76m). Whitham also set a personal-best mark in the shot put at 55-0 (16.76m).

Junior Nnenya Hailey clocked a time of 57.32 in her season debut for the 400-meter hurdles. That time was good for third place overall and No. 8 in the country.

The marquee race of the day was won by USC's Jaide Stepter.

The junior is a former Arizona state track champion from Canyon del Oro High School in Oro Valley.

She finished with a time of 56.14.

Junior Morgan Struble posted a time of 59.54 and finished in sixth place. Sophomore Miles Parish improves from his first ever 400-meter hurdles race and goes 52.30 today.

The quartet of freshman Tyrell Johnson, senior Mohammad Alhasan, junior Blake Eichler and freshman Ty Brandt clocked a season-best time of 39.84 in the men's 4x100-meter relay. That time was good for fourth place in the race and No. 14 in the country this year.

The quartet of Eichler, senior Pete Lauderdale II, sophomore Bryce Houston and Parish clocked a season-best time of 3:07.70 in the 4x400-meter relay. That time was good for third place overall and is 12th in the country.

In the 100-meter dash, Johnson clocked a time of 10.43 and finished in fourth place overall. Saturday was his first time competing outdoors for the Wildcats in 2015. Alhasan began the race but pulled up about halfway through the race and was unable to finish.

For the men's 400-meter race, Lauderdale clocked a personal-best time 46.36 and took fifth place. Eichler finished in seventh place overall with a personal-best time of 46.90. Houston's personal-best time of 47.49 was good for eighth place. Sophomore Collins Kibet ran the 400-meter race in 47.95, a personal-best time as well.

Another race full of personal bests for the Wildcats was the women's 400-meter sprint. Junior Gia Trevisan had a personal best at 54.76, good for fourth place. Sophomore Lizzie Smith had a huge personal best in fifth place, running 54.78 when her previous was 56.51. Sophomore Jasper Gray's time of 54.83 was a personal best in sixth place. Freshman Diana Gajda also ran 54.83 in seventh place and that too was a personal best.

In the women's 1,500-meter race, senior Elvin Kibet won with a personal-best time of 4:23.61. Freshman Claire Green clocked a personal-best time of 2:09.61, good for a fifth-place finish overall. Kibet also won the 3K with a time of 9:38.63 while senior Kristina Aubert finished in second place with a time 9:45.17.

A day after completing the heptathlon, sophomore Aleah Hurst won the long jump competition with a mark of 19-4 (5.89m, -1.1 wind).

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