Illinois Tallies Five Titles at Orange and Blue Open
Feb. 4, 2012
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The Illinois men's track and field team tallied five individual event titles at the Orange and Blue Open on Saturday and five second-place finishes in the last home meet at the UI Armory this season.
"I thought we did really well today," head coach Mike Turk said. "I saw a lot of positive progress from our young guys and some good execution. It was nice to get Ryan Lankford and Cody Wisslead out today. We're at the point where now it's all about competing. We've got two big meets next weekend on great tracks but we have a lot of work to do before conference."
Two Illini set personal-bests in the 60m hurdles with senior Cody Wisslead taking the crown with a personal-best time of 7.99 which ranks the sixth fastest in school history while freshman Gary Ford finished fourth and clocked a time of 8.19. Senior Stanley Azie collected his first 60m dash title of the season, finishing with a time of 6.82, tied for the 10th best in school history.
In the 400m, junior Malcolm Taylor finished second with a season-best time of 50.14 while teammate Nick Haab took third with a time of 50.87. Sophomore Zebo Zebe won the 600m in a time of 1:22.25, for his first title this season while freshman Josh Jones took second, recording a time of 1:22.27.
The Illini finished first, second and third in the mile with freshman Joe McAsey taking the crown in 4:12.64, senior Graham Farnsworth clocked a time of 4:14.06 and freshman Ian Barnett finished in 4:15.99.
In his track debut, Ryan Lankford took runner-up in the long jump with a mark of 23-2 ¾ (7.08m). Junior Brett Ramirez set a new personal-best in the weight throw, finishing with a throw of 60-11.60 (18.58m) that ranks third best in school history. While in the triple jump, freshman Branden Tanthavong posted a runner-up finish with a jump of 47-2 ½ (14.39m).
The 4x400m relay team of Haab, Zebe, Jones and Shawn Ledbetter took second at the Orange and Blue Open with a time of 3:21.83.
Next weekend, the Illini will be back in action as the crew splits. The distance squad heads to the Flotrak Husky Classic in Seattle, Wash., while the rest of the team travels to Fayetteville, Ark., to compete in the Tyson Invitational.
Illinois First Place Finishers