— Purdue Track & Field (@PurdueTrackXC) February 24, 2018
GENEVA, Ohio – Senior Jahneya Mitchell broke the 600-meter dash school record by 2.88 seconds on the opening day of the Big Ten Championships. Redshirt freshman Waseem Williams broke the freshman school record and was within 0.01 of a second of the overall program record in the 60-meter dash on the men’s side. The men are ninth after the first day with six points, while the No. 16 women are 12th with seven.
Mitchell was in the fourth heat of the 600-meter dash and left the crowd in awe. She ran away from the field, winning her section by 3.53 seconds with a time of 1:27.36. Her time was the best of the day by 0.76 of second and broke Purdue’s school record of 1:30.24, which was set by Rachel Stalzer in 2010. Joining Mitchell is Saturday’s final is redshirt freshman Samara Miller. Miller, who entered with the top time in the conference, crossed the finish line in 1:30.70, which won her heat. That time held up as the sixth-fastest of the prelims. Junior Kyelah Hodges just missed finals in the event, but did cross the line with a personal record. Her time of 1:31.81 ranks 10th in school history.
Senior Micaela Hazlewood put the women on the board with a fourth-place finish in the shot put. She launched a personal record throw of 16.61 meters (54-6.00), which ranks second in program history and 23rd in the country this year. Hazlewood’s finish earned five points, the first of her indoor career. Hazlewood’s performance also marks the first time the Purdue women have scored in the shot put at Big Ten Indoors since 2015.
Sophomore Jaden Mattox also put points on the board Friday. She advanced to the finals in the long jump with a clutch third attempt. After fouling her first two attempts, Mattox leapt 5.95 meters (19-6.25) to advance to finals in seventh. That would hold on to be her best jump and the place she’d finish, earning two points for Purdue. Mattox’s jump is the ninth-best in school history.
The women advanced three individuals to finals in the 200-meter dash. Sophomore Chloe Abbott won the seventh and final heat with a personal-record time of 23.63 seconds. That was the fourth-fastest in prelims and ranks fourth in school history. Senior Carmiesha Cox advanced after winning her heat with a time of 23.67 seconds. That was the fifth-fastest time in prelims. Senior Savannah Roberson grabbed the seventh of eight total spots in the final. She won the first heat with a time of 23.85 seconds. Junior Yakira Love was just on the outside of the final. She finished ninth overall with a time of 24.13 seconds.
Roberson was busy Friday and advanced to two other finals as well. First, she ran the 60-meter dash for the first time since last year’s Fred Wilt Open on Jan. 28, 2017. Roberson moved on to the nine-woman final after finishing second in her heat with a time of 7.44 seconds. Her mark is a personal record and ranks sixth in school history. Later, she advanced to the 60-meter hurdles final. She ran a personal-record time of 8.31 seconds, which was second in the heat and fifth-fastest overall. Her time ranks fourth in school history.
Along with Roberson, Cox also advanced to the 60-meter dash final. She ran the second-fastest time in the prelim, crossing the line with a season-best mark of 7.40 seconds.
The women earned two berths in the 400-meter dash final. Senior Brionna Thomas ran away with the section heat and finished with a time of 52.92 seconds. That held up as the second-fastest overall time in prelims. Abbott advanced to finals after winning the first heat with a time of 53.14 seconds, which was the third-fastest overall.
On the men’s side, Williams stole the show in the 60-meter dash right from the first heat. He had the fastest time of the prelim, posting a mark of 6.64 seconds. His time is No. 2 in school history, just 0.01 of a second off four-time Big Ten champion and current San Francisco 49er Raheem Mostert’s school record from 2014, and broke Shane Crawford’s freshman record of 6.70 seconds, which was set in 2008. Williams’ time is tied for 19th in the country this year and is the second fastest by any freshman in the nation.
Seniors Gerald McGee and Matthew Garrison put the men on the board with seventh and eighth place finishes, respectively, in the long jump. McGee had a best leap of 7.23m (23-8.75), while Garrison’s best jump of the day was 7.18m (23-6.75). McGee earned two points, while Garrison added one. Both scored in the event for the second year in a row.
Redshirt freshman Jalil Brewer put points on the board in the shot put. A week after adding his name to the program top-10 list, Brewer had a best throw of 18.76m (61-6.75). That was the sixth-best throw of the competition and earned him three points in his first Big Ten meet.
Senior Justin Veteto ran a personal record in the 60-meter hurdles to advance to finals. He crossed the line in 7.83 seconds, which was the fifth-fastest time of the prelims. His time ranks sixth in school history and is No. 25 in the country this year.
The Boilermakers will be busy Saturday. On top of the 12 advancements through prelims, Purdue will have scoring opportunities in the weight throws, 5,000-meter runs, triple jumps and 4x400-meter relays.