April 24, 2013
MADISON, Wis. -- With championship season only a couple weeks away, the Wisconsin men’s track and field team continues its mid-season preparation by competing in four different meets this weekend.
UW will send its most experienced distance runners to Stanford’s Payton Jordan Invitational in Palo Alto Calif., and will send other distance runners to the Drake Relays in Des Moines, Iowa.
The Badgers will also send throwers to the Triton Invitational in San Diego, Calif., and sprinters and jumpers to the Brutus Hamilton Invitational in Berkeley, Calif.
A quartet of distance runners will compete on Sunday at the Payton Jordan Invitational, annually regarded as the premier distance event of the spring.
Senior Rob Finnerty and sophomores Alex Hatz and Austin Mudd are scheduled to run the 1500 meters. The race is set to begin at 6:41 p.m. (CT).
Finnerty is very familiar with the event, as the senior took fifth in the 1500 at the NCAA outdoor championships last year in 3 minutes, 44.53 seconds to earn All-America honors. He also finished fifth at the 2012 Big Ten Outdoor Championships in 3:43.74.
At 10:50 p.m., Maverick Darling will represent Wisconsin in the 5000 meters. The senior is a two-time All-American in the indoor 5000, including a fourth-place finish at last year’s NCAA championships in 13:41.25.
Outdoors, Darling placed sixth at last year’s Big Ten championships and finished third in the 5000 at the Big Ten outdoor meet as a freshman in 2010.
In addition, Wisconsin will send the rest of its distance runners to Des Moines, Iowa for the Drake Relays on Thursday. Neal Berman, Michael Brice and Jacob Naylor will wear the cardinal and white in the 10,000 meters at 8:10 p.m. At 9:05 p.m., Jacob Erschen, Matt McKenna and Michael Van Voorhis will compete in the 5000 meters.
Beginning on Thursday, Wisconsin throwers will compete at UC San Diego’s Triton Invitational. Junior Danny Block and sophomore Alex Thompson will start things off in the Elite section of the discus, scheduled for 3 p.m.
Redshirt freshman Andrew Brekke and sophomore Scott Erickson will compete at noon Friday in the Invitational section of the hammer throw. On Saturday, Block, Thompson, Brekke and Erickson will represent Wisconsin in the invitational section of the discus. Block and Brekke are also entered in the invitational section of the shot put.
Badger sprinters and jumpers will also be busy this weekend at the Brutus Hamilton Invitational.
Competition begins for Wisconsin at 1:30 p.m. on Friday with Paul Annear’s entry in the triple jump. Action on the track starts at 2:35 p.m. when Japheth Cato, Matt Kerswill, Babatunde Awosika and Garret Payne compete in the 4x100 relay.
In addition to the 4x100 relay, Cato is entered in the 110 hurdles, the long jump and the pole vault.
A week after competing in their first collegiate decathlons, redshirt freshmen and multi-event athletes Charlie Foss and Ben Schreib will get a chance to improve on individual events. Over the two-day meet, the duo will compete in the long jump, pole vault, 110 hurdles and the javelin.
The meet will conclude at 6 p.m. with Payne, Awosika, Grant Bughman and Drew Simmons competing in the 4x400 relay.