Jan. 30, 2014
|Bill Bergan Invitational|
|Date||Friday, Jan. 31-Saturday, Feb. 1|
|Time||Friday: 2:30 p.m. | Saturday: 10:00 a.m.|
|Location||Lied Recreation Athletic Center/Ames,Iowa|
|Meet Info||Schedule | Heat Sheets|
The No. 15 Minnesota men's indoor track & field team returns to action this weekend with the fifth-annual Bill Bergan Invitational in Ames, Iowa. Iowa State hosts this weekend's meet with the Gophers set to compete on Friday beginning at 2:30 p.m. CT and Saturday beginning at 10:00 a.m.
Gophers Ranked 15th Nationally
The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association released its second set of national rankings earlier this week with Minnesota locked in at No. 15. Minnesota is one of four Big Ten squads in the top 15, joined by Wisconsin (four), Penn State (seven) and Nebraska (nine).
Gophers Post Top 25 Performances
Jon Lehman's weight throw of 21.92 meters (71-11 ft.) is a personal record for the senior as well as the sixth best throw in the nation this season. The Big Ten features four of the top six throws in the NCAA this season.
Zach Siegmeier has the Big Ten's best pole vault this season at 5.32 meters (15-05.5 ft.) -- a stat that ranks tied for 14th in the nation this season.
John Simons also paces the Big Ten this season and has the 18th best time in the nation in the one mile at 4:04.20.
Comments from Coach
Director of Men's Track & Field and Cross Country Steve Plasencia on the first road trip of the year...
"It'll be good for us. Iowa State has a really nice facility with a 300-meter flat track that will make for some exciting races. We're looking forward to a little change in scenery. We'll see a few of the same teams we've been seeing at our home meets, but it's nice to change up the venue."
On Minnesota's success at the Bill Bergan Invitational...
"Our guys enjoy this trip and this meet. It's a nice distance trip for us, and it's a great way to start the travel season. I know the guys are looking forward to it. Outside of the guys who ran cross country, this is the first road trip of the year for the rest of the squad. We can feel the excitement from the guys right now."
2013 Bill Bergan Invitational Recap
AMES, Iowa -- The No. 8 Minnesota men’s track & field team won six individual events to claim its second team title of the season at the Bill Bergan Invitational. The Gophers tallied 123.25 points at the event, more than 50 points ahead of runner-up Wisconsin.
The Gophers’ meet was highlighted by a 1-2-3 finish in the one-mile run with Nick Hutton claiming top honors with a time of 4:07.35. Bob Nicolls finished second at 4:09.74 while Travis Burkstrand followed closely in third at 4:10.47.
Also highlighting the Iowa State-hosted event was Minnesota’s 4x400 meter relay team of Jacob Capek, Kevin Bradley, Goaner Deng and Cameron Boy, which edged Kansas State for the team title with a time of 3:10.60. The Gophers also claimed top honors in the 3,000-meter run (John Simons, 8:11.18) and the 60-meter dash (Sean King, 0:06.68).
In the field events, Minnesota finished 1-2-3 in the pole vault with Zach Siegmeier pacing Jack Szmanda and Logan Markuson for the individual title. Siegmeier won the event with a height of 5.05 meters.
Oladipo Fagbemi took top honors in the triple jump with a leap of 14.92 meters – besting runner-up Paul Annear of Wisconsin by more than half a meter. Sam Kettenhofen finished second in the long jump with a distance of 7.30 meters – a tenth of a meter behind Kansas State’s Ifeanyichukwu Otuonye.
Minnesota’s throwers did not compete at the meet.
The University of Minnesota holds five Bill Bergan Invitational records including one held in part by a current Gopher. Goaner Deng, along with graduated seniors Harun Abda, John Holton and Cameron Boy set the meet 4x400 record last year with a time of 3:09.59. Sean King also tied the 60 meter dash record last year at 6.70.
Additionally, Abda set the meet 800 meter record in 2012 at 1:46.97, Chris Rombough set the 3,000 meter record in 2010 at 8:04.71 and Micah Hegerle set the weight throw record in 2011 at 20.57 meters (67-05.75 ft.).
Last Time Out -- Jack Johnson Invitational
MINNEAPOLIS – Behind seven individual titles, the No. 9 Minnesota men’s indoor track & field team picked up the team title on Saturday at the Jack Johnson Invitational at the University of Minnesota Fieldhouse.
Minnesota finished first and second in a trio of events on Saturday – the 600 meters, the weight throw and the heptathlon – and added titles in the 800 meters, the one mile run and the 4x400 meter relay after opening the meet with a win in the 200 meters on Friday.
The Gophers totaled 134 team points at the meet to lead all competing teams.
“I’m pleased with our performances overall this weekend, and it’s always nice to win titles at our home meets and build some confidence,” Director of Men’s Track & Field/Cross Country Steve Plasencia said. “We’ll continue to build from here because the competition only gets better as we go forward.”
Goaner Deng paced the field in Saturday’s 600 meters with a time of 1:19.75 and helped the Gophers to a win in the 4x400 meter relay with teammates Jacop Capek, Rashawn Fountain and Austin Salargo. The group clocked a 3:18.33 to close out the meet. In the 600, Deng edged teammate Nate Roese for the win – the freshman also clocked a 1:19.75 in the race.
Justin Barber came out on top in Saturday’s weight throw with a winning toss of 20.21 meters (66-03.75 ft.) with newcomer Gian Ferretti finishing in second as an unattached competitor at 19.71 meters (64-08.00 ft.). Jamie Crum put together a notable performance in Saturday’s final events of the heptathlon – moving up to finish first with 4,869 while Nick Bachinski finished in second with 4,711 points.
All-American John Simons made his season debut on Saturday with a win in the one mile run – clocking a 4:07.31 while Bradley Johnson won the 800 meters as an unattached competitor in 1:54.63 – Blayne Dulian finished fourth in the event at 1:55.43.
Minnesota’s seventh individual title was actually its first as Brad Neumann picked up the title in the 200 meters on Friday night – his second win in the event this season.
‘U’ Alum Siegmeier Joins Gophers Staff
A two-time All-American and three-time Big Ten champion, Zach Siegmeier will serve as director of operations for men's track & field and cross country.
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.