COLUMBUS, Ohio It’s a short trip up I-71 this weekend for the Ohio State men’s track and field team as the Buckeyes will be competing at the Akron Invitational Saturday at the University of Akron’s Stile Athletics Field House. The meet will feature Ohio’s top Division I squads and several out of state teams, including Pittsburgh and Duquesne, as well as outstanding individuals from many of the state’s top Division II schools. The Buckeye men will face off once again with that school from up north, No. 13 Michigan, whom they defeated earlier in the season in Ann Arbor at “The Dual.” Ohio State’s meet schedule will get underway Saturday at 9 a.m. ET. For more information visit www.GoZips.com.
OSU Accepted Entries
60m Dash (Blue)- Stephen Robinson, Chimdi Chekwa, James Manley
60m Hurdles (Blue)- Jonathan Francois
200m Dash (Gold)- Robinson, Curtis Leuenberger
200m Dash (Blue)- Manley
400m Dash (Gold)- Matt Comer, Brandon Woodard
400m Dash (Blue)- Aaron Roberts
800m Run (Gold)- Daniel White, Cory Leslie
800m Run (Blue)- Will Knickel, Keith White
1 Mile Run (Gold)- White, Leslie, Morgan
3000m Run (Gold)- Chad Balyo
5000m Run (Gold)- John Ealy, Christopher Olinger, Taylor Williams
4x400m Relay (Gold)- A’ Team
High Jump (Gold)- Ryan Blake
Pole Vault (Gold)- Bryan Chard
Pole Vault (Blue)- Alan Dague, Anthony Amore
Long Jump (Blue)- Pat Riechert, Steve MacDonald
Shot Put (Gold)- Matt DeChant, Patrick Whalen
Shot Put (Blue)- Tyler Branch, Aaron Crabtree
Weight Throw (Gold)- DeChant, Branch, Max Mays
Weight Throw (Blue)- Crabtree
Heptathlon (Gold)- Rob Wade
Murdaugh Sprints Way to Top of the Big Ten
Thomas Murdaugh, a freshman sprinter out of Dublin, Ohio, has already emerged as a team leader and one of Ohio State’s most consistent runners in only his first collegiate season with the Buckeyes. Saturday at Notre Dame’s Meyo Invitational, Murdaugh set a personal record and NCAA provisional time of 46.69 in the 400m, earning a third place finish. He was also a member of the 4x400m relay team that placed first with a blistering time of 3:10.02 that, at the time, was the seventh fastest time in the country on the year. Currently, the freshman owns the second best time in the conference in the 400m this season.
Whalen Solid in South Bend
Senior Patrick Whalen had a major breakthrough over the weekend in South Bend, Ind., as the veteran turned in what was perhaps his best all-around performance of the year in securing two individual Top 10 finishes. Whalen took the title in the shot put Saturday with a mark of 17.38m, a day after finishing ninth in the weight throw at 17.21m, an event that saw four Buckeyes finish in the Top 12.
See Takes First in Boston
OSU All-American Jeff See was in Boston, Mass. for the Boston Indoor Games, preparing for the upcoming Big Ten Championships while teammates competed at Notre Dame. See took first place in the mile run with a season best time of 4:01.17, as he timed his final kick perfectly to edge Hayden McLaren of Providence (4:01.22).
“It was just a great win and a great experience,” See said after the race.
Buckeyes Ranked No. 64 in Latest USTFCCCA Rankings
Ohio State fell five places to No. 64 in this week’s NCAA Division 1 Track and Field rankings. In individual events, freshman phenom Thomas Murdaugh is the highest ranked Buckeye athlete at No. 12 in the 400m dash. Matt DeChant secured a Top 25 position in the shot put at No. 23, while Chad Balyo is ranked No. 46 in the mile. Murdaugh, Brandon Woodard, Matt Comer and Stephen Robinson sprinted their way into the Top 25 of the 4x400m relay at No. 23 with a time of 3:10.02 Saturday at the Meyo Invitational.
Last Time Out
The 4×400 relay team of Brandon Woodard, Stephen Robinson, Matt Comer and Thomas Murdaugh was the highlight of the weekend for the Buckeyes at the Meyo Invitational in South Bend, Ind. The foursome recorded the seventh-fastest time in the nation in the event with an NCAA provisional mark of 3:10.02.
The 4×400 team wasn’t the only highlight of the weekend for Ohio State; Patrick Whalen, Matt DeChant and Tyler Branch continued their solid starts to the season in the shot put and weight throw. Whalen, as previously mentioned, took the title in the shot with a mark of 17.38m (57’ 00.25”) and ninth in the weight throw. DeChant secured third in the shot with a throw of 17.15m (56’ 03.25”) and sixth in the weight at 18.10m (59’ 4.75”); Branch took eighth and twelfth, respectively.
Junior Brandon Woodard took fourth in the 500m dash with a scorching time of 1:04.06. John Ealy and Christopher Olinger secured two Top 10 finishes in the 5000m run for OSU – Ealy’s eighth place finish at 14:23.43 is the third best time in the Big Ten so far this season. Olinger’s time of 14:27.27 earned him the conference’s fourth best time on the year to go along with tenth place.
In the 60m hurdles, Jonathan Francois posted an 8.10 for a fourth place finish, his personal best time and the seventh best in the conference. Curtis Leuenberger set another Buckeye personal record in the 200m dash with the Big Ten’s eighth best time of the year, a 21.76 sprint. Cory Leslie turned in a third place finish in the mile run with a season best time of 4:07.40.