Winter Claims Marquette's First BIG EAST Indoor Title
Feb. 19, 2012
2012 BIG EAST Indoor Track & Field Championships
NEW YORK - Junior sprinter Kyle Winter claimed the first BIG EAST Conference indoor title for Marquette with a time of 1:52.99 in the 800-meter run finals Sunday morning at the BIG EAST Indoor Track and Field Championships at The Armory in New York.
"I am very proud of the way we competed today, especially with Kyle Winter's victory in the 800," said Marquette head coach Bert Rogers. "We knew Kyle would be a contender going into the race and our goal was for him to get on the podium. The race was a little physical early on and he stayed back in the pack until the last 300 meters when he made his move. He caught the runner-up right at the line and the race was set up perfectly for him."
Winter's 10 points helped the Marquette men to a ninth-place finish with 33 total points, their highest point total and finish since entering the conference in 2006.
"Going into the weekend one of our goals was to place the highest and earn the most points on the men's side that we ever have," Rogers said. "It was great to accomplish that and I am very proud of the way the women competed as well."
Winter notched the first BIG EAST title for Marquette since the outdoor championships in 2008 and the first individual championship since Matt Piekarski captured the decathlon title in 2006.
The native of Wales, Wis., had the seventh-fastest 800 time (1:54.44) in Saturday's preliminary heats and tops his eighth-place finish (1:52.43) in the event from 2011. He is currently third on the program's all-time list with a personal best of 1:50.62.
Hackett's fifth-place finish tied his placement from 2011 in the mile in a time of 4:11.30. He paced two other Golden Eagles in the men's mile with a time of 4:12.73, the eighth-best mark on Saturday.
O'Brien placed seventh in the 200 finals with a time of 21.85 seconds after finishing third in the first heat. He tied his school record of 21.75 seconds in the 200 prelims with the eighth-fastest time on Saturday afternoon. It was the first time O'Brien had notched a sub-22 second time on a banked 200-meter track.
The men also earned points in the high jump from Cheldon Brown (seventh place, two points) and senior James Muehleman in the triple jump (eighth place, one point) as well as the men's 4x800-meter relay (seventh place, two points).
Sophomore Kristen Gaffey grabbed the lone point for the Marquette women on Sunday with a distance of 44 feet, 11 1/4 inches (13.70 meters) in the shot put for an eighth-place finish.
Jonathan Kusowski's program record in the men's weight throw highlighted the first day of competition. Kusowski's throw of 63 feet, 1/4 inch (19.21 meters) placed him second overall in the event and earned eight points for the Marquette men.
Another great mark was turned in on day one by sophomore Carlye Schuh who placed fifth in the long jump with a personal-best distance of 19 feet, 1 1/2 inches (5.83 meters). The Appleton, Wis., native was in eighth place in the event heading into her final jump before topping her previous PR by almost five inches. Schuh's finish earned the MU women four points.
The pole vault proved to be a valuable event on both the men's and women's sides for Marquette with a pair of seventh-place finishes. Jerrick Backous moved up to third on Marquette's top-10 list with a top height of 15 feet, 3 inches (4.65 meters), while Abby Croft's vault of 11 feet, 9 3/4 inches (3.60 meters) is the third-best MU mark ever.
The meet is the seventh for the Golden Eagles since joining the BIG EAST prior to the 2005-06 academic year.
The Golden Eagles return to action Friday, March 2 at Notre Dame's Alex Wilson Invitational.
Men's Team Scores
Women's Team Scores
Marquette's BIG EAST Indoor Finishes