Rutgers returns to the Armory for 18th annual invitational
Knights enter invitational coming off five title event
This weekend, the Rutgers men’s track and field team will venture back to the Armory for the 18th annual Armory Track Invitational. The Scarlet Knights have made their mark at the first invites of the season by staying consistent in times and capturing event title wins. Also taking part in the invite are Villanova and Penn, who Rutgers competed against a week ago at the Penn 8-Team Select.
Renamed the Dr. Sander Invitational after The Armory Foundation's former president Dr. Norbert Sander, the Knights will go against other collegiate track and field teams, such as Duke, Missouri, Connecticut, Albany, St. John’s, Brigham Young, Oregon, Big Ten foe Wisconsin and host, the Columbia Lions. The Columbia Challenge on Saturday will serve as part of the Dr. Sander Invite.
At the Ocean Breeze Athletic Complex last weekend, the Penn 8-Team Select served as the team's last competition, coming home with five event title wins.
For his second straight competition, freshman sprinter Taj Burgess captured both the 200-meter (21.62) and 400-meter (47.45). Following close behind in the 200-meter was junior Zo Aris with a season-best time of 22.04 to put him in second place.
Additionally, freshman hurdler Boaz Madeus ran a time of 48.90 to place fourth in the 400-meter, while the 60-meter hurdles saw freshman Edwyn Pierre run a 8.38-second finish, receiving the runner-up position.
Distance-running sophomore Sean Martinek and freshman Billy Hill paced Rutgers in the 800-meter by placing fourth and fifth, respectively. Posting a ninth-place finish in the mile was sophomore Cole Pschunder with a time of 4:17.86. The 3,000-meter saw junior Conor Murphy run in the middle of the field to record a 15th-place finish, out of 38 runners, with a time of 8:40 flat.
The field events were dominated by sophomore Patrick Warren, freshman Ja’Quan Mial and junior Jairus Paul.
Warren captured the long-jump title with a 6.79-meter (22’ 3.5”) jump. The Knights claimed the top two spots in the triple jump with Mial and Paul leaping 14.42 meters (47’ 3.75”). In the end, Mial bested Paul with his second farthest jump of 14.24 meters to Paul’s 14.17-meter jump.
In Rutgers’ first two competitions, sophomore Tobi Tella won back-to-back triple jump titles. At the Penn 8-Team Select, Tella fouled twice at the start of the event before pulling out completely to prevent injury.
The Knights closed out the invite by taking the 4x400-relay title in a season best time of 3:15.77. Aris, Burgess, Madeus and Hill were able to just outrun the 3:15.89 time posted by Penn’s relay team.
Rutgers will compete at the Dr. Sander Invitational from Jan. 26-27, with the Columbia Challenge taking place on Saturday.
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