Note: My live blog of today's action at the Penn Relays is still going. Scroll down to the bottom of the post to follow along and post comments.
Villanova got a big finishing kick from anchor runner Matthew Gibney and held off a pack of strong challengers to win the college men's Distance Medley Relay Championship of America today at the Penn Relays.
It is the 24th time that the Wildcats have won the Championship of America in the men's DMR.
Albany held the lead after the opening 1,200-meter leg, with Providence second and Villanova third. The Wildcats were one of a number of schools that surged forward during the second leg of 400 meters, and were second behind Indiana at the ensuing handoff.
Over the course of the 800-meter leg, the main pack became clear - though it was pretty big. Arkansas, Villanova, Indiana, Albany, Brigham Young, Providence and Virginia Tech were all within close range of each other.
The Wildcats took the lead coming out of the last handoff, as Gibney took the baton to start the 1,600-meter leg. He was content to draft for a while behind Virginia Tech, but as the last lap began Gibney and his rivals started making moves.
Albany held the lead as the bell sounded, then Brigham Young made a move on the backstretch. But Gibney had the last word, surging to the front out of the final turn and holding on to win a sprint to the finish.
The Wildcats' final time was 9:37.93. Brian Tetreault ran the 1,200-meter leg in 2:57.86, Carlton Bowers ran the 400-meter leg in 0:46.89, Samuel Ellison ran the 800-meter leg in 1:51.03, and Matthew Gibney ran the 1,600-meter anchor leg in 4:02.16.
Arkansas finished second in 9:38.40, Brigham Young finished third in 9:38.60, and Indiana finished fourth in 9:39.24.
Temple also had a successful afternoon on the track, winning the consolation-round college men's DMR in 9:58.82.
Good morning once again. It's cool and a bit breezy at Franklin Field, but there's not a cloud in the sky. So it should be a great day for racing on the track.
Here are some links to get you started before jumping into today's live chat.
- Today's schedule of races.
- A piece on the fan experience during the rain delay from Evan Burgos and Chris Melchiorre of the Inquirer.
- A look at the USA vs. the World rosters from Joe Juliano.
- A profile of Florida hurdler and potential NFL prospect Jeff Demps from Joe Juliano.
- A recap of the high school girls' Distance Medley Relay from Ted Silary of the Daily News.
As ever, if there's a race result you want to know about or a Penn Relays memory you want to share, I hope you'll let me know about by posting a comment in the live chat.
With that said, let's get things going.
If you're on a mobile device, click here to follow along and post comments.