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UNC track and field team sets 13 personal records in action-packed weekend

Cross Country Regionals
Ashley Smith sprints toward the finish line during the NCAA Southeast Regional Championships at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC on Friday, Nov. 9 2018.

The North Carolina track and field team had 13 athletes set new personal records over a two-day weekend full of competition that spanned four meets.

What happened?

North Carolina competed in the David Hemery Valentine Invitational, Tiger Paw Invitational, the USATF Indoor Championships and the Don Kirby Elite Invitational over the busy weekend. 

The Tar Heels started the packed weekend with five new personal records set on Friday.

Junior Dontavian Smith set a personal record in the semifinals of the men’s 60-meter dash at the Tiger Paw Invitational with 6.76 seconds.

At the David Hemery Valentine Invitational, senior Ashley Smith finished third in the second heat of the women’s 3,000 meters unseeded run with a time of 9:55.43, a new personal record. In the women’s mile, senior Erin Edmundson won heat five with 4:49.34, another personal record. Junior Emmeline Fisher finished second in heat six of the women’s one mile with a time 4:52.91 for personal record as well. 

For field events on Friday at the Don Kirby Elite Invitational, redshirt-junior Madias Loper set a personal record in the men’s shot put with a throw of 17.85 meters and finished ninth.

Throughout the second day of the Tiger Paw and David Hemery, North Carolina set another eight personal records. 

Four of them came in the men’s mile run at the Hemery Valentine Invitational as Jesse Hunt, senior Alex Milligan, senior Mitch Resor and senior Brandon Tubby all set personal records.

In heat four of the men’s mile, Hunt led the way when he finished second with a time of 4:03.50, but Milligan finished a close third with a time of 4:03.65. Tubby rounded out heat four as he finished with a time of 4:05.70, good enough for seventh place. Resor raced in heat 12 of the men’s mile and won the heat with a time of 4:11.87. 

In the men’s 3,000-meter run, the Tar Heels had a duo set personal records and won their respective heats.

Junior Ian Moini won heat eight in the men’s 3,000 meters with a time of 8:21.82, and senior Matt Thornton won heat 10 with a time of 8:25.45. Senior Jeremy Brown ran in the men’s 3,000 as well and finished third in heat nine with a time of 8:24.35, also a personal record.

Senior Brianna Isles competed in the women’s triple jump at the Tiger Paw Invitational. Isles won her respective heat with a distance of 12.36 meters and set a personal record in the event as well.

Who stood out?

In total, 13 Tar Heels set personal records through four meets. One of the most impressive was Hunt's performance. He entered the 2020 indoor season with a personal best of 4:20.43 in the men’s mile, but with his personal record today, Hunt has shaved 17 seconds from his time since January.

When was it decided?

Isles' win in the women's triple jump was by one of the most narrow margins over the weekend, as her jump was only 0.02 meters better than second place.

Why does it matter?

This weekend saw the most personal records broken in a given weekend for the year, further solidifying the hot start that the team has had this season.

When do they play next?

The track and field team will compete in both the two-day Virginia Tech Challenge in Blacksburg, Virginia, and the JDL DMR Invitational in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, starting on Friday, Feb. 21.

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@A_ReynoldsDTH

@DTHSports | sports@dailytarheel.com