March 30, 2013
PALO ALTO, Calif. – Harun Abda ran the fastest 800-meter run in the NCAA this season to earn top honors at the Stanford Invitational as the Minnesota men’s outdoor track and field team picked up a pair of individual titles over the weekend in Palo Alto.
In his outdoor season debut in the 800 meters, Abda paced the competition with a winning time of 1:48.64 – topping Myles Andrews of Southern California by three-tenths of a second for the first two performances in the nation under 1:49 this season.
On Friday, Justin Barber picked up his second win of the year and first of the outdoor season after leading all student-athletes in the collegiate hammer throw with a winning throw of 56.7 meters (186-03 ft.) for Minnesota’s second title of the weekend.
In other notable performances on Saturday, the Gophers listed three of the top seven competitors in the invitational hammer throw. Defending Big Ten Field Athlete of the Week Quentin Mege finished second overall and first among attached student-athletes with a throw of 66.22 meters (217-03 ft.) while Micah Hegerle finished fourth overall at 63.27 meters (207-07 ft.). Jon Lehman came in seventh (third among attached competitors) at 60.10 meters (197-02 ft.).
Minnesota’s 4x400 relay team picked up a runner-up finish behind Notre Dame on Saturday with a time of 3:09.12 – the best performance in the Big Ten this season and one of the top 10 finishes in the NCAA. Cameron Boy also posted the Big Ten’s top performance in the 200 meters on Saturday, finishing second in the event with a time of 21.10.
After finishing second in the long jump on Friday with a leap of 7.31 meters (23-11 3/4 ft.), Oladipo Fagbemi closed out his weekend with a fourth-place finish in the triple jump on Saturday, posting a distance of 15.45 meters (50-08 1/4 ft.).
The Gophers return to action next weekend at the Hamline Invitational.
Blankenship, Mead Shine in Olympic Finals
Mead and Blankenship recorded the best Olympic finishes by Gophers since Staffan Strand finished sixth in the high jump for Sweden during the 2000 Olympics in Sydney.
Blankenship Punches Ticket to Olympic Final
Ben Blankenship (1,500) and Hassan Mead (5,000) will run in Olympic finals on Saturday night.
Mead Moves on to Olympic 5,000 Final
Mead races in the 5,000 meter final at Olympic Stadium on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. CT.