WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. --
The Indiana men's track and field team is in second place after the first day of the Big Ten Championships, held on Saturday at Lambert Fieldhouse. The men totaled 26.5 points, trailing only Wisconsin, who tallied 53.5.
"I thought we had an average day today," said Director of Track and Field Randy Heisler. "We were not bad, but Wisconsin just had a great day. We would win an event, but they would outscore us with multiple finishers."
Junior Aarik Wilson was the lone Hoosier to win an event. Wilson, a six-time All-American, took first in the long jump with a leap of 7.58m (24-10.50). Sophomore Kiwan Lawson was fourth in the event with a jump of 7.31m (23-11.75). The two finishes gave IU 15 points.
Junior Ryan Ketchum took third in the shot put with a heave of 18.35m (60-02.50). The throw came on Ketchum's third attempt in the event. Purdue's Nedzad Mulabegovic claimed first with a toss of 19.63m (64-05.00), while Joe Thomas of Wisconsin was second with a throw of 18.90m (62-00.25). Ketchum's mark notched six more points for Indiana.
The men's distance medley relay team earned five points with a fourth-place finish. The quartet, composed of senior Eric Redman, juniors John Jefferson and Stephen Haas and sophomore Trey Warfield, finished with a time of 9:44.83.
Junior David Stead was the only other point scorer for the Cream and Crimson. He tied for eighth in the pole vault with a 4.75m (15-07.00), earning the Hoosiers a half of a point in the team standings.
IU placed 10 athletes into tomorrow's finals.
Juniors John and Sean Jefferson qualified for the championship heat in the mile. John Jefferson placed first in his preliminary heat with a time of 4:07.39, while Sean Jefferson was first in his heat with a 4:07.84. Both will be the top seeds heading into tomorrow's nine-man final.
The Hoosiers had three athletes qualify for the 12-men final in the 400 meters. Sophomore David Neville was third in the preliminaries with a 48.50. Freshman Doug Dayhoff was eighth with a personal-best 48.56, while junior Andre Grimes was 11th with a career time of 49.15.
Neville also qualified for the finals in the 200, after a fifth-place finish in the preliminaries with a posted time of 21.77.
Senior Rodney Hollis advanced to the finals of the 800 with a fourth-place showing in the preliminaries, where he was clocked at 1:52.75. He will compete with eight others in the finals.
Freshman Marcus Thigpen survived the preliminaries and the semifinals of the 60-meter dash, advancing to tomorrow's eight-man final. Thigpen was eighth in the prelims with a time of 6.88. He then moved into the eight-man finals with a personal-best 6.79 in the semis, where he placed fifth.
Sophomore Stephanos Ioannou and senior David Lewis also got by the preliminaries and semifinals in their event, the 60-meter hurdles. Ioannou placed second in the preliminaries with a time of 7.94. He then matched that time in the semifinals, placing fifth in that heat. Lewis also posted the same mark twice. He was fifth in the prelims and eighth in the semis, both times clocked at 8.06.
Senior Jake Wiseman is currently fifth in the heptathlon with 2,896 points. He was first in the heptathlon 60-meter dash with a time of 7.11. He also placed fourth in the heptathlon shot put with a toss of 13.65m (44-09.0) and seventh in the heptathlon long jump with a leap of 6.55m (21-06.00). Wiseman ended day one of the heptathlon events with a 12-place showing in the high jump, clearing 1.81m (05-11.25). Wisconsin's Ben Roland (3,135) leads the event. Minnesota's Travis Brandstatter (3,074), Steve Weatherford of Illinois (2,995) and Nathan Brown of Wisconsin (2,965) round out the top five. The heptathlon still has three events left in the 60-meter hurdles, the pole vault and the 1000m run.
The Hoosiers will have their chance to catch Wisconsin with 13 final events on Sunday. Aside from the events that had their preliminaries and semifinals today, the weight throw, triple jump, 5000m and 4x400-meter relay are all set to begin.
"We are going to need to win most of the events tomorrow and hope Wisconsin does not match us in points," said Heisler. "We have a chance, but you just don't make up 25 points, especially since they qualified as many guys as we did. I do know that we will come out and compete and give it all we got."
The meet will continue tomorrow, starting with the remaining heptathlon events slated to get underway at 10:20 a.m.