TUCSON, AZ - The University of Arizona Wildcat men's and women's track and field teams had distance runners compete on Friday evening in the 57th annual Mt. SAC Relays at Historic Hilmer Lodge Stadium in Walnut, Calif. Senior Elvin Kibet became a school-record holder on Friday for the women's 5,000-meter race. Competition resumes on Saturday at 11:50 a.m. MST.
Kibet raced in the women's 5K invitational "A" section, the fastest section at the meet, and clocked a personal-best time of 15:36.08. That time was good for fourth place overall and first among collegiate competitors. It is the No. 4 time in the country on the year as well. Kibet entered the race with the third-best time (15:57.20) in UA history behind Jen Bergman and Amy Skieresz. Now, Kibet holds the school record after topping Skieresz's time of 15:37.77 that was set on June 5, 1998 in Amherst, N.Y. Kibet is now the fastest in school history for the 5K and has the second-fastest time for the 10K.
"I am very, very happy," Kibet said. I had no idea I was going to run that well. I think it helped that I approached this race with so much confidence and I was very calm. Coach (James) Li and Coach (Time) Riley told me to just go out there and compete my hardest and that is exactly what I did. I have always wanted to break the school record but I didn't think it was going to be today, so it came by a surprise. I am extremely happy."
Junior Molly Callahan ran the 3,000-meter steeplechase on Friday for the first time since March 15, 2013. Callahan improved on her previous time by just under a minute, running 10:49.87, the eighth-best time in school history.
For the men's 1,500-meter race, sophomore Collins Kibet, the brother of Elvin, clocked a time of 3:48.68. Junior Sam Willis clocked the No. 2 time of his career at 3:50.35. Sophomore Matthew Beer set a personal-best time of 3:50.44, beating his previous No. 1 time by around five seconds.
On Thursday night, senior Kenji Bierig ran the 3,000-meter steeplechase in 9:07.30.
The rest of the squad, sprinters, hurdlers, jumpers and throwers are set to compete in the LSU Alumni Gold Classic in Baton Rouge, La. That meet will take place at LSU's Bernie Moore Track Stadium. Saturday's meet will begin with field events at 7 a.m. MST while the track events start at 7:45 a.m.