Red Raider Relay Highlights Day 1 of Masked Rider Open

Kennedy Kithuka and the Red Raider distance medley relay team finished first overall Friday night.

Jan. 18, 2013


LUBBOCK, Texas -  The Texas Tech track and field program completed its first day of action at the Masked Rider Open Friday evening inside the Athletic Training Center.

Early in the competition, the men's distance medley relay team turned in an impressive performance during its 2013 debut. Powered by a strong anchor leg from 2012 NCAA Cross Country Champion Kennedy Kithuka, the squad captured a first place finish with a time of 9:55.87.

The time currently ranks No. 2 in the country, exactly two seconds off Penn State for the national lead, and is the fastest performance by a Texas Tech squad since 2010 when the Red Raiders set the current facility record.

"It was a great start to the season for our distance medley team," Texas Tech head coach Wes Kittley said. "We got out to a great start, and Kennedy finished it with a great anchor leg. Hopefully they can continue to improve as the season goes on and we get closer to nationals."  

The women's distance medley relay `A' team, comprised of Rachel Folan, Olivia Lewis, Caitlin Waters and Sharlene Nickle, also turned in a strong performance finishing second overall with a time of 12:08.40.

On the heels of a strong start to the season a week ago, sophomore Jacorian Duffield cleared his seventh career bar over the seven-foot barrier in the men's high jump. Duffield finished second overall with a clearance of 2.14m (7'-0.25"), and was followed by freshman Bradley Adkins in third as the pair helped Tech to claim two of the top three spots in the event.

Adkins also cleared 7'-0.25", his first collegiate bar over seven-feet, and finished third on misses.

Freshman Michaela Palu finished second in the women's high jump with a clearance 1.66m (5'-5.25") - her second top-three finish of the season.

In the women's sprints, senior Candace Jackson finished first overall in the women's 200-meter dash with an indoor personal-best time of 23.88. She was followed by teammates Cierra White and Amoy Blake who finished in third and fourth respectively.

White finished with a time of 24.18, while Blake finished with a time of 24.32.

In the men's 200m dash, junior sprinter Dwayne Extol finished fourth overall with a time of 21.78.

Meanwhile, Lady Raider Christen Rivers took home a first place finish in the women's 600-yard run early in the evening with a time of 1:22.54. The time marked a season-best for the sophomore from Lancaster, Calif and her second win in as many meets in the event.

In the women's long jump `A' section, freshman Gionna Jackson finished second with a season-best mark of 5.61m (18'-5.00"). On the men's side, freshman Kyle Thompson finished fourth overall in the `A' section of the men's long jump with a mark of 6.24m (20'-5.75").

Closing the action on the track in the women's 5,000-meter run, freshman Madeline Livergood finished sixth with a time of 19.17.17.

Texas Tech will return to action tomorrow inside the ATC with the final day of completion beginning at 10 a.m.




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