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Irish perform well at Big East’s

Mike Gilloon | Monday, February 23, 2004

The Irish men’s and women’s track and field teams came close to sweeping the team titles at this weekend’s Big East Indoor Championships. Instead, both teams placed second in the conference meet held at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, N.Y. The Irish men won the conference title last year and came within seven points of a repeat championship. However, Connecticut came out on top scoring 160 team points to Notre Dame’s 153. Just as they did in last year’s conference indoor meet, the Irish women finished behind a tough Miami squad, 179-111. The Irish had many outstanding individual performances on both sides. Selim Nurudeen was the sole individual champion for the men as the junior set the Big East and Carrier Dome record in the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 7.78 seconds.Nurudeen continued his successful weekend by finishing third in the 60-meter dash in a time of 6.86 seconds and second in the 1,600-meter relay. The relay team finished in 3:13.71 seconds and consisted of junior Trevor McClain-Duer, freshman Jordan Powell, senior Thomas Dwayne and Nurudeen. Senior Godwin Mbagwu was second in the triple jump with a distance of 15.16 meters. He also placed third in the long jump with a leap of 7.04 meters. Fellow senior Juan Alba placed second in the weight throw as he tossed the 35-pound weight a distance of 18.06 meters. Sophomore Ryan Postel placed a close second to Seton Hall senior Obra Hogans in the 400-meters. Postel finished in 47.66 seconds, 0.47 seconds behind Hogans. The mile saw Irish runners finish in second and third place. Freshman Kurt Benninger beat out his junior teammate Eric Morrison as the two finished in 4:08.74 and 4:09.16 respectively. The Irish also had someone finish second in the men’s high jump as junior Chris Staron cleared 2.01 meters. Junior Ryan Mineburg and freshman Christopher Jacques finished fifth and sixth respectively. On the women’s side junior Lauren King repeated as conference champ in the mile run finishing in 4:53.95. Senior Megan Johnson was right behind King in second place with a time of 4:55.57. The 1,600-meter relay team finished in first place as senior Kristen Dodd, junior Tiffany Gunn, junior Tricia Floyd and freshman Okechi Ogboukiri scorched to a time of 3:45.23. Dodd was also second in the 400-meters with a time of 54.76 seconds while Floyd placed seventh in 57.42. Senior Ayesha Boyd placed fifth in the 60-meter dash with a time of 7.65 seconds while Dodd finished seventh in 7.74 seconds. Molly Huddle turned in yet another impressive effort, as the sophomore was one of three runners to break the Big East 3,000-meter record of 9:13.11. The extremely fast race was won by Providence junior Kim Smith who demolished the record by running in a time of 8:55.88. West Virginia senior Megan Metcalfe finished second and Huddle finished third in 9:09.34. Stacey Cowan led the way for the Irish women in the field events. The sophomore cleared 1.82 meters in the high jump to finish in second place. Her senior teammate Jennifer Kearney took sixth as she jumped 1.64 meters.