BLACKSBURG, Va. -- The momentum from day one of the Virginia Tech Invitational in Blacksburg, Va., carried over to day two of the competition for Duke’s track and field team, with a number of Blue Devils continuing to perform at a high level. Eleven Blue Devils secured ACC qualifying standards in their respective events on Saturday.
Senior Phil Fairleigh paced the Blue Devils in the 5,000, clocking a time of 14:49.08 in the first track event of the day and placing second in the event. Fellow senior Clint McKelvey also dipped under the 15-minute barrier, finishing in a time of 14:57.87 and placing third overall. Both times are faster than the ACC-qualifying mark of 14:59.24 for 5,000, qualifying the seniors for the ACC Indoor Championship. Sophomore Eddie Merenda narrowly missed qualifying for the conference championship, finishing in a time of 15:01.21 and finishing fourth.
The Blue Devils dominated the distance medley relay, with the women sweeping the event and the men capturing the victory, as well.The A-relay of freshmen Haley Meier and Hannah Meier, junior Callie Francis and graduate student Audrey Huth took the women’s event in a time of 11:30.42, nearly 30 seconds faster than the next relay other than Duke. Duke’s B-relay finished second in 11:41.01 and the Blue Devil C-relay placed third in a time of 11:57.59. The men’s DMR of freshmen Alec Kunzweiler and Dylan Murphy, sophomore Dylan Newman and junior Brian Schoepfer won in impressive fashion, covering the distance nearly 13 seconds faster than the second-place team after finishing in a time of 10:08.73. A day after improving his mile personal-best by six seconds, Kunzweiler led off the DMR with a solid 3:03 1,200m leg.
The Blue Devils continued performing well in the middle-distance events on the track, with juniors Henry Farley and Kyle Moran placing first and second, respectively, in the 800. Farley won the event in a time of 1:54.56 and Moran finished just a tenth of a second behind his teammate, running a time of 1:54.66. Sophomore Allison Sturges won her heat of the 800 and placed fifth overall in a time of 2:20.28.
Junior Lauren Hansson earned a new school record at 200m, while also qualifying for the ACC Indoor Championship. The Los Angeles, Calif., native finished fifth overall in an ACC-qualifying time of 24.58, nearly a tenth of a second faster than the qualifying time of 24.67 and two-tenths of a second faster than the previous school record of 24.74 set last year by teammate Elizabeth Kerpon. Kerpon placed seventh overall on Saturday, running a time of 24.76 and freshman Madeline Kopp placed eighth in a time of 24.79, placing the freshman third on Duke’s all-time list at 200m.
The Duke men continued to excel in the distance events Saturday, with the trio of graduate student Mike Moverman, junior Shaun Thompson and senior Brian Atkinson taking the first-three places in the 3,000. Moverman led the Blue Devils in a time of 8:21.51, followed by Thompson, who finished in a time of 8:22.01 and Atkinson, who clocked a time of 8:25.00. In the women’s 3,000, graduate student Juliet Bottorff placed third after running 9:47.40. Senior Ashley Berry finished one place behind her Blue Devil teammate in a time of 9:57.62.
The Blue Devils closed action on the track with a second-place finish in the women’s 4x400 with a time of 3:42.82, placing the foursome of Hansson, junior Alexis Roper, Kopp and Kerpon second on Duke’s all-time list at the distance. Kopp, competing in her fourth race of the weekend contributed a 54-second leg for the Blue Devils. The men’s 4x400 saw similar success, placing fifth overall in a time of 3:16.97. The team of sophomore Robert Rohner, sophomore Michal Filipczak, junior Ian Rock and graduate student Curtis Beach now sits fifth on Duke’s all-time list for the 4x400.
In the field events, redshirt junior Michael Krone led the Blue Devils with a second-place finish in the high jump, clearing 6-10.75 (2.10). The Berwyn, Pa., native qualified for the ACC Indoor Championship with the mark.
Senior Justin Amezquita earned a second-place finish in the pole vault after setting a school record of 17-5.75 (5.33), improving on his previous school record of 17-5.00 (5.31) from a year ago. Amezquita earned an ACC-qualifying mark with his record-setting vault. Sophomore Megan Clark also qualified for the conference championship in the pole vault, clearing 13-3.50 (4.05). Clark remained in third on Duke’s all-time list with the personal-best mark.
Multi-specialist and redshirt sophomore Teddi Maslowski remains in second on Duke’s all-time list in the long jump after posting a mark of 18-5.00 (5.61) on Saturday. In the men’s long jump, Beach finished the day in fourth with a leap of 23-6.25 (7.17).
Redshirt sophomore Karli Johonnot closed the competition for the Blue Devils in the shot put, notching a personal-best throw of 41-5.00 (12.62), placing the Las Vegas, Nev., native sixth overall.
In addition to members of Duke’s track and field team competing at the Virginia Tech Invitational, a number of Blue Devils also traveled to Chapel Hill, N.C., to participate in the Joe Hilton invitational.
The trio of redshirt senior Michelle Anumba, redshirt freshman Urina Harrell and senior Erica Brand placed first, second and fourth, respectively in the shot put. Harrell’s throw of 46-0.50 (14.03) moved her into third on Duke’s all-time list. All three qualified for the ACC Indoor Championship with the performances. Redshirt sophomore Stephen Boals saw a personal-record drop in the shot put Saturday, improving his previous best of 55-7.75 (16.96) to 56-2.00 (17.12), also qualifying the Loomis, Calif., native for the conference championship.
Sophomore Michael Foley opened competition with an ACC-qualifying mark of 54-1.00 (16.48) in the weight throw, placing the Paradise Valley, Ariz., native second overall in the event.
Freshman Ashton Huey debuted for Duke with a fourth-place finish in the long jump. The Tupelo, Miss., native posted a jump of 20-7.00 (6.27) Saturday.
Duke returns to competition Friday, Jan. 24, as the Blue Devils travel to Chapel Hill, N.C., to compete in the Carolina Cup. The meet is set for a 5 p.m. start in the Eddie Smith Field House.