Illini Perform Strong at LSU's Battle on the Bayou
April 7, 2012
Baton Rouge, La. - On Saturday at the Bernie Moore Track Stadium, Illinois tallied 82 points and finished fourth in a field of nine teams at LSU's Battle on the Bayou. Senior Andrew Rileyalso made his outdoor debut and scored 10 points individually, as the Illini competed against a loaded field, including No. 2 LSU, No. 7 Texas Tech, No. 9 Mississippi State, and No. 20 Iowa.
Also, Kyle Engnellwas the first collegiate runner to finish the 3,000m steeplechase on Friday at the Stanford Invitational as the senior finished seventh with a personal-best time of 8:47.27. Engnell's finish ranks third fastest in the country and fifth best in school history.
"Kyle had a nice season opener," assistant coach Gavin Kennedysaid. "It's always nice to set a personal-best and be the top collegian at a meet as prestigious as Stanford. I'm looking forward to seeing what he can do the rest of the season."
At LSU, the sprint crew performed well, earning 23 points between the 100m and 200m races as senior Stanley Azie lead the Orange and Blue finishing third in the 100m (10.47) and fourth in the 200m (21.15). Freshman Brandon Stryganekfinished fifth-sixth in the respective races.
"From a team standpoint, it was a very productive meet," head coach Mike Turksaid. "Overall, our performances at this time of the season are way ahead of where were at this point last year. We are moving in the right direction. This was another big step forward for our program. It is exciting to see our progress."
The 110m hurdles featured a showdown between two of the top hurdles in the country, with Riley earning a runner-up finish behind LSU's Barrett Nugent. Riley opened his outdoor campaign with a time of 13.52, which currently ranks fifth in the NCAA this season and crossed the line just three hundredths of a second after Nugent (15.49). Riley also led off the third-place 4x100m relay and finished eighth in the 200m with a time of 21.25.
"Being his first race since indoor nationals, Andrew was a little rusty in the hurdles but he had a good early season time." Turk said.
The 4x100 relay of Riley, Stryganek, junior Josh Zinzer and Azie placed third with a time of 39.77. In the 4x400m relay, the tandem of sophomore's Zebo Zebe, Ryan Lynn, freshmen Joe McAseyand D.J. Zahn took seventh with a time of 3:13.35.
Lynn also added three points with a sixth-place showing in a loaded 800m race after recording a personal-best time of 1:48.83 while senior Dan Kremske picked up two points with a seventh-place finish in the 1,500m after a time of 3:50.94. Senior Nic Haabadded more points for the Illini as he placed seventh in the 400m hurdles with a time of 53.94.
"Our 800m group continues to improve and had a good showing against a national class field," Turk said. "Ryan (Lynn), had a break through performance going 1:48.83 for the first time and Zebo (Zebe) had another personal best as well."
In the field events, Illinois gained 10 points in the pole vault behind a pair of top-five finishes. Sophomore Matthew Bane finished third with a mark of 17-0 ¼ (5.19m) while junior Josh Hodur was fifth after clearing a height of 16-3 ¼ (4.96m). Freshman Davis Frakernetted 11 points in his two throwing events, finishing second in the hammer with a mark of 198-06 (60.51m) and sixth in the shot put with a distance of 55-09 ¼ (17.00m).
Next week, Illinois will travel to Columbia, Mo., for the Tom Botts Invitational hosted by the University of Missouri, April 14.
Illinois Results at Stanford Invitational
Illinois Results at LSU's Battle on the Bayou
1. LSU, 157.50
3. Dan Kremske, 8:31.56
4. Nate Bohne, 8:36.28
400 Meter Hurdles