Feb. 7, 2014
MADISON, Wis.-- In the most anticipated race at the Armory Collegiate Invitational Friday night, No. 5 Wisconsin won the championship distance medley relay at the New Balance Track and Field Center.
The Wisconsin quartet of Austin Mudd, Babatunde Awosika, Carl Hirsch and Reed Connor ran a solid race to cross the line in 9 minutes, 39.09 seconds, just ahead of second-place Mississippi (9:40.17). Entering the final leg 30 meters behind the leading pack, Connor took the baton from Hirsch and caught the lead back with 250 meters to go. With 200 meters remaining, Connor accelerated into the lead he wouldn't relinquish, running the 200 meters in 27 seconds. Connor ran the 1600 meter leg in 4:01
Danny Block's second-place finish in the championship shot put and Japheth Cato's third-place performance in the championship long jump highlighted the rest of the action Friday.
Block, a Hanover Park, Ill., native, recorded a toss of 62 feet, 8 3/4 inches in just his second bit of action this season. Cornell's Stephen Mozia won the event with a mark of 64-2 1/2 while UW's Andrew Brekke took 20th (53-0 3/4).
Block's heave is UW's top mark this season and was less than three feet off of his school-record mark of 65-7 1/2, which he set last season.
Cato also posted UW's best mark this season in the long jump. He soared 24-6 1/2 in his first long jump competition this season. Rutgers' Corey Crawford won the event with a mark of 26-1 3/4.
Four other Badgers -- Babatunde Awosika, Aaron Thompson, Michael Van Voorhis and Tyler Woloszyk-- competed in championship events in the first day of competition.
Awosika took sixth in the 400 meter prelims with a time of 48.17 and advanced to the finals, which will take place Saturday afternoon. It was Awosika's second-best time in the event this season.
Thompson and Woloszyk placed sixth and eighth, respectively in the 500 meters. Thompson registered a time of 1 minute, 2.91 seconds while Woloszyk crossed the line in 1:03.87. Pittsburgh's Brycen Spratling won in 1:00.85.
Rounding out championship competition for the Badgers was junior Van Voorhis. In his first bit of competition this season, Van Voorhis posted a time of 14:20.60 in the 5000 meters, good for a sixth-place finish.
The Badgers also posted three top-three finishes in college events on the day. Collin Taylor tied for third in the high jump by clearing 6-9, Matt Widule placed second in the 60 hurdles in 8.13 and Ryan Davis finished second in the 400 meter prelims with a time of 48.31.
Both Widule and Davis posted their best marks this season in their respective events.
Competition will resume Saturday at 8:07 a.m. (CT) with the college 5000 meters and the meet will conclude with the men's championship 4x400 relay at 4:42 p.m.