LINCOLN, Neb. The Nebraska track and field team collected eight more titles on Saturday for a weekend total of 10 wins at the 45th Annual Frank Sevigne Husker Invitational in front of a packed house of 2,289.
One year after breaking the mile school record at the Frank Sevigne Husker Invitational, George Kusche predicted before this year's meet that he would break the 3,000-meter school record. He accomplished that and much more. Kusche ran 7:50.93 to win the event with a school record, a meet record and the Bob Devaney Sports Center record. He shattered his own previous school record of 7:57.16 (oversized) and the facility record of 7:58.20 (Richard Kosgei, Barton County, 1994). Kusche's time leads the Big Ten and ranks No. 3 in the NCAA this season.
The Malelane, South Africa native now owns both the mile and 3,000 meters school records outright. He was named the men's most valuable performer of the meet. Iowa's Jenny Kimbro was the women's most valuable performer after winning the pentathlon with the No. 2 mark in the nation this season.
Freshman Brent Wetovick continued his unbeaten season with a win in the 600 meters. Wetovick ran a personal-best time of 1:18.18, the eighth-fastest time in school history. He has won all seven collegiate races he has competed in this season, including two 800 meters, two 600 meters, two 4x400-meter relays and a distance medley relay.
Burger Lambrechts Jr. was the winner in the shot put with a throw of 63-2 3/4 (19.27m). It marked his second win in as many weeks in the event. Kristina Insingo picked up her third shot put title of the indoor season, setting a new personal best with a throw of 55-0 (16.76m). Her mark improved her to No. 4 in school history and No. 10 in the nation this season.
Ieva Turke picked up her second event title of the weekend, as she won the triple jump title with a season-best 42-2 3/4 (12.87m). Turke was the long jump champion on Friday and now has four total wins on the season.
Erika Freyhof won the women's 3,000 meters after a new personal-best time of 9:40.23. Madison Yerigan was the champion in the women's high jump, clearing a collegiate indoor best 5-8 1/2 (1.74m).
The Husker men capped the meet with a victory in the 4x400-meter relay. Isaiah Hutchinson, Cody Mroczek, Wetovick and Tony Nou won the race with a time of 3:12.19.
Jessi Smith and Michaela Peskova took two of the top three spots in the 600 meters. Smith was the runner-up in 1:33.22, and Peskova was third with a time of 1:33.40. Elsa Forsberg and Judi Jones also pulled off the 2-3 finish for the Big Red. Forsberg improved her No. 9 time in school history to 4:46.06 to place second in the mile, while Jones ran a PR 4:50.23 to take the bronze.
Hutchinson was the runner-up in the 200 meters. He improved his indoor personal best to 21.17, which remains the No. 7 time in school history. Jordan De Spong was the second-best collegiate finisher in the mile, running a personal-best time of 4:04.93. Emma Bresser was the women's 800-meters third-place collegiate finisher with a PR 2:10.13.
Alexander Thompson finished fourth for the Huskers in the triple jump with a jump of 50-0 3/4 (15.26m), a new personal best. Terrol Wilson took fifth at 49-3 1/2 (15.02m).
Darby Thomas was third for the Big Red in the 60 meters, clocking in at 7.58. Luke Siedhoff took fourth in the 60-meter hurdles after a season-best time of 7.84, just .01 off his all-time PR. Matthew Brown placed fourth in the 60 meters in 6.80, while Lorenzo Paissan ran 6.84 to finish fifth.
Zach Podraza was the top Husker in the heptathlon, finishing fourth with a personal-best total of 5,408 points, topping his previous career high of 5,247. Podraza had PRs in the 60 meters, shot put, 60-meter hurdles and 1,000 meters.
Mayson Conner, Lincoln McPhillips and Michael Hoffer all cleared 6-8 3/4 in the high jump to finish, third, fifth and seventh, respectively, based on tiebreakers. The Husker women's 4x400-meter relay finished fifth with a time of 3:45.75, a season best.
The Huskers will hit the road next weekend for the first time this season. Nebraska's athletes will split between the Gorilla Classic in Pittsburg, Kansas and the Iowa State Classic in Ames, Iowa. Both meets will be held next Friday and Saturday.