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Track has stellar performance

March 25, 2003

By Whitney Long

The Baylor track and field team placed in the top three in 16 out of 36 events in the Dr Pepper Invitational, jumpstarting their outdoor season at the Hart-Patterson Track and Field Complex.

The Bears competed against four other schools, including Tarleton State University, Northwood University, Texas Christian University and the University of North Texas.

The men had the top four finishers in the 1,500-meter run.

Sophomore Nick Devenport, from Mesquite, took first place with a time of 3:53.56. Sam Bernal, a Frisco sophomore, came in second. He was followed to the finish line by freshman Rob Morrow, from Grapevine, and Jon Capron, a senior from Albuquerque.

'It was a good race, considering this was one of our hardest training weeks,' Devenport said. 'We are preparing for the Texas Relays in two weeks, and we can't take it easy this week.'

Colleyville junior Matt Chance also placed in the distance races, taking first in the 3,000-meter run.

In practice, the male distance runners typically run approximately 60-70 miles a week. This week, they reached 80 miles.

'In my race, I want to run hard, but sometimes I'm not as prepared as I should be because I'm so tired from practice,' Devenport said.

The Bears also won the top three places in the 800-meters. Desoto freshman Wil Fitts crossed the finish line first with a time of 1:52.92. Sophomore Alex Altaffer, from Garland, took second, and Capron came in third.

'Will Fitts did a good job,' head Coach Clyde Hart said. 'He is so young and still learning.'

The Baylor men took the first three places in the 400-meter hurdles as well.

Seth Billy, a senior from Barbados, came in first. Houston junior Brian McDonald followed closely behind, barely edging out Shafter, Calif., senior Jordan Lewis by tenths of a second.

Mark Henkes, a Hurst senior, competed in the 110-meter hurdles winning first place.

The men's 1,600-relay team, won first place also. The mile relay team consisted of Billy, McDonald, Fitts and San Antonio junior Robbie Quiroga.

'It wasn't one of my best meets this year,' Quiroga said. 'We've been training hard, though, and I'm looking forward to the rest of this outdoor season.'

The women's team captured an equivalent amount of titles on the track and in field events.

All-American sophomore April Holliness, from Duncanville, won first place in the long jump. Eboni Hammond, a Waco senior, took first in the women's discus as well.

In the women's 3,000-meter run, Stephanie Bennett, a senior from Canada, and Houston junior Megan McCoin took first and second, respectively.

Lakadron Ivery, a Tyler sophomore, placed first in the 100-meter dash, nearly setting the outdoor record.

San Antonio freshman Janelle Mulkey won first place in the 100-meter hurdles, and Houston junior Tiffany Wise placed first in the 400-meter dash.

'I think I did okay for the first outdoor meet,' Wise said. 'I was a little nervous at first about running at home, but I knew I had to just go out and do what I needed to do to win.'

The women's mile relay also took first place. Danielle Myricks, a sophomore from Willingboro, N. J., took first in the 400-meter hurdles. Elizabeth Wilson, a Duncanville sophomore, placed first in the 200-meter dash.

'The good thing about this meet is that we got our feet wet, literally,' Hart said. 'We now look to do even better than this next week.'

The Bears will continue their outdoor season on Saturday, when they will compete in the Tom Tellez Invitational in Houston.