The UNC track and field team competed in three meets over the weekend — the Florida Relays, the Stanford Invitational and the High Point VertKlasse Meeting.
"It was the best weekend of the season thus far," track and field coach Harlis Meaders said. "I think performing well at the Florida Relays and at Stanford shows that we're ready to compete against just about anybody in the country."
At the Florida Relays, sophomore R.J. Alowonle also had a standout performance. He set the third-fastest time in school history in the 400-meter hurdles and was also part of the 4x400-meter relay team.
"I think it was a really good step in the right direction," he said.
He said the environment at the meet was competitive, as many fast college teams and professional teams were there.
"I think we really stepped up to the plate," he said. "It was a good environment, and we had a good chance to get a good race, and no one really shied away from the challenge."
Freshman Cory Nicholls again broke 1:50 for the men's 800-meter race in Florida. Sophomore thrower Sarah Howard and freshman runner Chris Reeder also set personal bests in their respective events.
Four distance runners competed at the Stanford Invitational, where they also performed well over the weekend.
Seniors Steve Magnuson, Isaac Presson and Pat Schellberg and sophomore Lizzy Whelan all set personal records and NCAA regional qualifying times at the Stanford Invitational.
Presson's 13:52.93 in the 5,000-meter race is the fourth fastest time in UNC outdoor history — marking his sixth top-five UNC time.
"(Pat and I) were hoping to be in the fast section, which would have put a little bit more pressure on the pace," Presson said. "But the most we could do was win the race."
Presson placed first in his section, and Schellberg placed fourth.
"It was a bit bittersweet because I think that I can run faster in the 5k," Presson said.
Other members of the team competed at the High Point VertKlasse Invitational and posted several top three finishes.
Senior Ryan Ramsey set the farthest jump by a UNC athlete this year in the men's long jump, and junior Cori Floyd set a personal record and finished second in the women's 400-meter hurdles.
"Across the board, we had a really good weekend," Meaders said. "I think the team now can really figure out our true potential."