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Lady Flames Break 9:00 in 4 x 800

April 24, 2010  Philadelphia, Pa.  RSS
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Big South 800-meter champion Meghan Burggraf ran the second leg of the Lady Flames' 4 x 800 relay, Saturday afternoon at the 116th Penn Relays.

Big South 800-meter champion Meghan Burggraf ran the second leg of the Lady Flames' 4 x 800 relay, Saturday afternoon at the 116th Penn Relays.

The Liberty women's 4 x 800 relay team of Jaime Watson, Meghan Burggraf, Hailey Neal and Rebekah Ricksecker became only the second squad in program history to break the 9:00 barrier, highlighting Saturday's action at Franklin Field, on the final day of the 116th Penn Relays.

Lining up in the Championship of America section, the Lady Flames clocked an 8:59.79, finishing 12th and qualifying for the ECAC meet. The clocking was Liberty's fastest in 22 years, falling just 0.31 seconds shy of the school record of 8:59.48, set at the 1988 Penn Relays.

Liberty's 4 x 800 quartet consisted of four Big South individual event champions, beginning with conference 400-meter dash winner Watson, who posted the race's fourth-fastest leadoff split, 2:09.53. She handed off to freshman Burggraf, and the Big South 800-meter titlist clocked a 2:15.28. Big South steeplechase champion Neal followed with a 2:20.88, and then three-time conference 1,500-meter victor Ricksecker brought the Lady Flames home in 2:14.12.

Liberty also competed in the men's 4 x 800 relay on Saturday, posting a season-best time of 7:45.69 to place sixth in its heat and 22nd overall in the college portion of the event. The Flames' quartet consisted of Drew Edwards, Jordan Bright, Paul Arslain and Isaac Wendland. Wendland's 1:52.1 split on the anchor leg was Liberty's fastest baton carry of the day.

The Flames placed seventh in the men's 4 x 100 IC4A final, crossing the line in 42.28. Liberty's relay members included Roderick Spruel, Andre Washington, Oronde Vassell and Jacey Bailey.

One day after recording a personal best in the discus, Elliot Galeone competed in the championship section of the men's javelin. The redshirt junior placed 10th, with a top throw of 192-7.

Later in the day, Ryan Bell fared well in the men's javelin college section. His season-best 198-10 heave on his first attempt put the sophomore in 9th place out of 28 entrants, one position ahead of Big South Conference rival Jared Baird from Winthrop.

Rounding out the field events, Ryan Smith threw the hammer 161-10, ending up 27th in the college section.

The Flames and Lady Flames will return to Lynchburg for their final home meet of the 2010 season, Thursday's Liberty Twilight Qualifier. The one-day event will begin with the women's hammer throw, slated for a 1:30 p.m. start at the Campus East throwing venue. Heats of the men's 100-meter dash will get things started on the track, at 3 p.m.