Track & Field Teams Wrap up Competition in HL Outdoor Championships

Sophomore Rebecca Zaiter
Sophomore Rebecca Zaiter

May 5, 2013

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YPSILANTI, Mich. - The UIC men's and women's track & field teams both finished fifth at the Horizon League Outdoor Championships after the conclusion of Sunday's events at Rynearson Stadium. Sophomore Rebecca Zaiter recorded a strong showing for the women's team, finishing second in both the 800-meter and 1,500-meter runs.

The women's team finished with 51 team points, while the men's squad wrapped up the meet with 42 total points.

Zaiter crossed the finishing line in 4:27.38 in the 1,500-meter run, which set a new Horizon League Outdoor record. In the 800-meter run, Zaiter finished the race in 2:11.90. She accounted for 16 team points with the two standout performances.

"Rebecca is definitely the standout athlete of the meet," said head coach Jim Knoedel. "She pushed an All-American in the 1,500, and then had to turn around and run the 800 just 40 minutes later. She was clearly tired, but found a way to avoid third-place by fighting at the end. I was tremendously impressed with Rebecca's performance this weekend."

On the men's side, junior Richmond Richter tallied a third-place finish in the triple jump after leaping 14.74 meters in the finals. Classmate Seyi Ogunleye took fifth (14.12 meters) in the competition, while Justin Higginbotham placed sixth (14.04 meters).

"Our depth in the triple jump is something we have been able to hang our hat on all season," Knoedel said. "It was great to see us continue that this weekend."

Senior Roy Mwale finished fifth in the 400-meter dash, collecting a time of 48.68 seconds. Senior Anthony Hollingsworth crossed the finishing line in 10.90 seconds in the 100-meter dash, and also recorded a sixth-place finish in the 200-meter (21.77 seconds). The combination of freshman Martin Hunter, junior Ryan Blackmon, sophomore Gunnar Sterne and Mwale made up the 4x400 relay, a foursome that finished third overall in 3:18.77.

Senior Ariel Butzine, the defending outdoor champion in the 800-meter run, finished fourth in the women's 400-meter dash with a time of 56.91 seconds. In the triple jump, senior Andrea Crump leaped 11.53 meters, good for a fifth-place individual finish. The women's 4x400 relay, comprised of Jaime Johnson, Zaiter, sophomore Mary Daly and Butzine, finished fourth after crossing the finishing line in 3:53.18.

Representatives from both the men's and women's teams will compete in next Friday's Dr. Keehler Invitational at North Central. The meet will serve as one of the final tune-ups for individual NCAA postseason consideration. The NCAA West Regional is scheduled for May 23-25 in Austin, Texas.