Feb. 10, 2012
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WACO, Texas - Baylor's track and field team will have one more chance to position itself for the league championships at the Texas A&M Invitational at noon on Saturday in College Station, Texas.
Baylor will be one of nine teams in the talented field, including host Texas A&M, Alabama, Houston, Missouri, Rice, TCU, USC and UTEP. The Bears enter the weekend ranked No. 15 on the women's side and No. 28 on the men's side. The Aggies are the only other team in the top 30 with the No. 8 men's squad and No. 9 women's squad.
Baylor currently boasts a total of 50 individual marks in the league's top 20, including 27 positioned in the top 10. Baylor's women have 26 (15 in top 10) and the men have 24 (12 in top 10) of those marks.
Last time out, Baylor earned four victories with two new school records and a breakout performance by freshman Patrick Schoenball at the New Balance Collegiate Invitational. Schoenball pulled away from the field over the final lap of the 1,000 meters on his way to a Big 12-leading time of 2:23.68 in his first individual race in a Baylor uniform.
Along with Schoenball's winning performance, throwers Skylar White and Erin Atkinson each broke their own school records on the way to victory. White recorded a shot put toss of 56 feet, 10 inches to rank second in the league and sixth nationally, while Atkinson dominated the weight throw with the second-best toss of the year in the league of 67-9. Her mark ranks seventh in the NCAA.
Freshman Rachel Johnson collected her second win of the season and third straight personal best in the 3,000 meters at the NBCI with a time of 9:28.27. That time ranks her eighth in the league, just ahead of ninth-place teammate Cate Westenhover at 9:30.46. Johnson's fellow freshman Erin Hegarty vaulted herself near the top of the Big 12 at the NBCI as well, running the league's second-best 5,000-meter time of 16:55.45.
Also for the women, sophomore Tiffani McReynolds improved her league-leading 60-hurdle time to 8.18 and turned in a 60-meter dash time of 7.42 to rank third in the league. In the NCAA, McReynolds hurdle time ranks sixth overall.
In addition for the women, Baylor's distance medley relay team of Mariah Kelly, Diamond Richardson, Brittany OgunMokun and Johnson took over the league lead with a time of 11:13.18 at the New Balance Invite. Triple jumpers Jessica Ubanyionwu and Kaitlin West held their spots at second and sixth in the Big 12, respectively.
On the men's side, Baylor's 4x400-meter relay team of Zwede Hewitt, Justin Allen, Drew Seale and Blake Heriot maintained the top spot in the conference with their season-best time of 3:07.17 set two weeks ago. Heriot also ranks in the top five in the league in both the 200 and 400 meters. Heriot is third in the 400 meters at 47.34 and fifth in the 200 at 21.46.
Senior Robbie Knorr put himself in the middle of the Big 12 distance elite with a solid 5,000-meter run last weekend. Knorr's time of 14:37.89 at the New Balance Invite moved him into fourth in the conference.
The event is scheduled to begin in the field and with preliminary rounds on the track at noon, followed by the track finals at 2 p.m. at the Gilliam Indoor Track Stadium.