Okwelogu Leads Charge for Track & Field at Hurricane Alumni Invite

Okwelogu Leads Charge for Track & Field at Hurricane Alumni Invite

Harvard tallied a handful of first-place results over the weekend (Gil Talbot).

MIAMI – Splitting for a pair of meets April 8-9, Harvard Track and Field tallied a handful of top performances at the Hurricane Alumni Invitational, hosted by Miami, and the Sam Howell Invite, hosted by Princeton.

Junior Nikki Okwelogu led the charge in South Beach, posting victories in the discus and shot put. The Fresno, California native broke her own school record in the discus with a toss of 179-5 (54.69), which is 12 feet better than the second-place mark in the Crimson annals. The throw was also the second-best in Ivy history. Not done on the afternoon, Okwelogu also triumphed in the shot put with a throw of 56-0.5 (17.08).

Senior Autumne Franklin and junior Jade Miller finished in the top two spots in the 400 hurdles, with Franklin picking up the win in a personal best 56.19. The co-captain's mark was the second fastest in school history, while Miller crossed the stripe just behind in 56.74. The times are the fourth- and eighth-fastest nationally. The duo also took seventh and ninth in the 100H in 13.64 and 13.80 seconds, respectively, with Miller's time good for fourth-best in Harvard and eighth-best in Ivy history. Senior Madison Hansen placed 11th overall in the 100 hurdles in 14.08, which represents the sixth-fastest time by a Harvard hurdler.

Freshman Gabby Thomas continued her hot stretch in the sprints, finishing as the top NCAA runner in the 100 and 200 meters. The Florence, Massachusetts native posted times of 11.49 and 22.86, respectively, in the two races, which were just behind her own school record marks. The 200 meter run featured a former Olympic medalist and a plethora of World Championships and Olympics qualifiers.

Classmate Ngozi Musa took 10th overall and third among NCAA runners in the 100 with a time of 11.74, and she also stopped the clock at 24.55 in the 200 meters to set a new personal best and the 10th-best mark in Harvard history.

The Crimson relays took second in both the 4x100 (Musa, Miller, Franklin, Thomas) in 44.77 and the 4x400 (Thomas (52.4), Franklin (52.2), senior Christi Scott (55.7), Miller (52.5)) in 3:32.87. Both times were just off the pace of the school record times held by the same groups, with Franklin and Miller posting lifetime-best efforts in the 4x400.

Senior Allison Morrison posted second- and fourth-place results in the long and high jump, respectively. She leapt to 18-6.5 (5.65 meters) in the long jump before taking fourth in the high jump after clearing 5-7 (1.70 meters). Both marks are season bests for Morrison. In the pole vault, Lexie Schachne tied a personal record with a height of 11-7.75 (3.55 meters).

On the men's side, junior Efe Uwaifo posted a third-place result in the triple jump with a season-best mark of 51-0.25 (15.55 meters). Senior Julian Nunally tallied a pair of top-10 performances in the throws, finishing second in the discus (172-10; 52.69 meters) and seventh in the shot put (49-4.25; 15.04 meters). Nunally's throw in the discus was a career-best, and slots sixth in the Harvard record books.

Freshman Ian West posted the 10th-highest pole vault mark in school history (15-7; 4.75) to set a new collegiate best. Junior Max Mondelli set collegiate-bests in the 100 and 200 meters with times of 10.76 and 21.55, respectively, and his time in the 100 narrowly missed the top-10 all-time by a Harvard sprinter by .01 seconds.

Harvard also sent student-athletes to Princeton, where freshman Kieran Tuntivate posted a victory in the 800 meters in a career-best 1:59.17. Senior Chris Allen took fourth in the 5,000 in 14:26.94 with a 20-second personal-best. Sophomore Madeleine Ankhelyi posted the third-fastest 3,00 meter steeplechase in Harvard history, crossing the line in 10:47.79.

Harvard track and field heads to New Haven for the annual Harvard-Yale meet on Saturday, April 16.