Freshman Brandon Stryganek qualified for the finals in the 60m and 200m at the Big Ten Indoor Championships.
Feb. 24, 2012
LINCOLN, Neb. - Day one of the Big Ten Championships was highlighted by senior Andrew Riley becoming the fastest 60m runner in Illinois history, as he set a time of 6.63 in the prelims and was the top qualifier in the event to move into the finals. The Illini qualified five athletes in four events into the finals tomorrow.
"Of course Riley led the way for us again today," head coach Mike Turk said. "He had the fastest qualifying times in both of his events and lowered the school record again. However, the story of the day for us was our youth. Our freshman were outstanding and stepped up big. Each one set personal-bests and qualified for the finals in their respective events."
Freshman Brandon Stryganek will join Riley in the 60m final tomorrow, as the Hawthorn Woods, Ill., native placed eighth and set a career-best time of 6.80 to rank 10th fastest in school history. Stryganek also qualified for the 200m finals along with fellow freshman D.J. Zahn, both finishing the race with a time of 21.43, the ninth-fastest time in the record books.
Riley also turned in the fastest 60m hurdles time (7.74) to win his heat and move onto the final. Wisslead also won his heat and set the second-fastest time in the event and a new personal best time of 7.93. Wisslead's time ranks among the best in school history, the fourth fastest.
Joe McAsey moved into the finals of the 800m as the freshman took sixth place and set a career-best time of 1:49.69. The distance medley relay squad of McAsey, Zahn, sophomore Ryan Lynn and senior Kyle Engnell gave the Illini three team points with their sixth place finish and a time of 9:48.81, sixth fastest in school history.
"The distance medley relay ran exceptionally well," Turk said. "All four guys were up to the challenge and it was a gutsy race to get us on the board."
The Illini just missed scoring in the 600m, as sophomore Zebo Zebe took 10th with a personal-best mark of 1:19:04. In another final event, senior Alex Baldwin set a career-best pole vault mark of 16-5 ½ (5.02m) to finish 10th.
"We came up short in a few areas today," Turk said. "However I feel great about the guys we have in the finals tomorrow. We also have two guys with outstanding performances going in the heptathlon with a chance to score."
A full list of Illinois results from competition on Friday can be found below. Saturday's action of the Big Ten Indoor Championships will begin at 10 a.m. and conclude at 5:15 with the 4x400m relay, the final event of the day. Live results can be found HERE.
Illinois Friday Results at Big Ten Indoor Championships
Q/q=qualified for Saturday event final
Big Ten Men's Indoor Championships Team Standings (Through six events)
1. Nebraska - 45
2. Wisconsin - 32
3. Ohio State - 27
4. Indiana - 23
5. Minnesota - 22
6. Penn State - 15
7. Michigan State - 9
7. Michigan - 9
9. Iowa - 6
10. Purdue - 4
11. Illinois - 3