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Track and Field

Notre Dame splits squad for N.M., Indiana meets

| Sunday, February 2, 2014

This weekend Notre Dame sent half its track and field team to the New Mexico Invitational, while the rest of the team stayed close to home for the Indiana Relays in Bloomington, Ind..  Miles away from home and their teammates, the Irish placed highly in a nine-team field in New Mexico and continued their strong annual presence at the Indiana Relays.

Irish junior Kaila Barber races at the Notre Dame Invitational on Jan. 25 in the Loftus Center. Barber Zachary Llorens
Irish junior Kaila Barber races at the Notre Dame Invitational on Jan. 25 in the Loftus Center.
 The men finished in third at the New Mexico Invitational, falling behind only Nebraska and LSU. The women placed fourth, with LSU, Nebraska and New Mexico taking the top three. Irish coach Joe Piane was with the team in New Mexico and said he was excited about the results. “We beat UCLA, beat Arizona State, beat New Mexico, beat TCU, beat Air Force. It was a very successful meet,” Piane said. The Barber sisters were at it again this weekend for the Irish, accumulating six top-three finishes between juniors Kaila and Jade, including a win by Jade in the 60-meter hurdles. “Jade Barber ran an outstanding 60-meter hurdle,” Piane said. “That should be fast enough to get her in [to the NCAA championships].” Irish graduate student Jeremy Rae also continued his dominant season, winning the men’s one-mile run by almost four seconds with a time of 4:02.62.  After setting the school record for men’s 1,000-meter run last week at home, Rae has not stopped moving up in the national ranks, moving all the way up to second in the mile run. “Not only is he a good runner, but he trains really hard and everybody on the team knows that,” Piane said of Rae. “If you want to emulate somebody, he is the guy to emulate.” Piane said a host of other Irish runners performed well over the weekend, as well, including a pair in the 3,000-meter run. “Another guy that ran well is [graduate student] Nick Happe. He won the 3,000-meter and is ranked about 10th in the country,” Piane said. “[Senior] Alexa Aragon won the 3,000-meter and did a great job.” Happe turned in a time of 8:15.25 and claimed the victory by over 11 seconds, with Irish junior Jake Kildoo coming in behind him, while the senior Aragon sealed the win by over 30 seconds with a finish of 9:46.08. A pair of sprinters earned victories for the Irish when junior Josh Atkinson took home the win in the 60-meter dash B section by turning in a time of 6.84 and senior Patrick Feeney won the 400-meter dash with a time of 46.53. Back in Indiana, the Irish took on a familiar venue in the Indiana Relays. Notre Dame collected 15 top-five finishes, including a victory in the men’s 400-meter run by sophomore Aaron Dunn, who turned in a time of 50.03.  Connor Stapleton finished right behind him, grabbing the silver in 50.34.  In the men’s 800-meter, freshman Grant Koch, senior Eddy Gibbons and freshman Adam Turner all turned in top-five performances. Koch finished second in the event with a time of 1:51.54, slightly ahead of Gibbons and Turner, who took third in 1:51.64 and fifth in 1:54.78, respectively. The Irish will look to continue their strong performances this weekend, when they host the Meyo Invitational on Friday and Saturday. Contact Matthew Garcia at [email protected]

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About Matthew Garcia

Matthew Garcia comes from Long Island with a strong passion for baseball and the Yankees. He is studying Mechanical Engineering in his third year at the University of Notre Dame while enjoying his stay in Hotel Duncan.

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