Men’s track rolling towards Big Ten meet

The Minnesota men’s track and field team continued its march towards the Big Ten indoor meet in a few weeks with wins in six events in the unscored Minnesota Invitational on Saturday at The Fieldhouse.
The meet featured Division I competition from Georgia, Marquette and Southwest Missouri State.
Relays proved to be the strength of the team this weekend. Minnesota won the 4×400-meter relay and the distance medley relay. Coach Phil Lundin feels his squad can contend for the Big Ten title in the 4×400.
“We have the type of 4×400-meter runners on this team,” he said. “I also think we have the right personnel for the 4×100-meter relay. This event helps us prepare for outdoor meets.”
Minnesota also had a strong showing in the 600-meter dash, where junior Tom Gerding (1:19.70) and senior Andy Wohlin (1:21.55) took first and second respectively.
“It was pleasant to see Tom and Andy run a strong race,” Lundin said. “The 600 is a good way for (Gerding) to get stronger in the 400 outdoors, which is kind of his forte.”
Steve Slattery and Linus Lindroth tied for first in the pole vault (16-feet, 3/4-inches) for Minnesota, but Lundin said they have a few inches to go to compete for the Big Tens title.
“They’ve got to step it up to the 16-8 range, but they’re both capable of doing that,” he said.
Slattery is a redshirt freshman who has never competed in a meet on the road. He is anxious for his trip to the Big Ten this year.
“We’ve had a little extra time this year because of semesters,” he said. “I just have to keep working; I can kind of taste it.”
Georgia’s Andras Haklitz broke a Fieldhouse record Saturday in the weight throw (69-4), an event dominated by the Bulldogs. Georgia also took first in the shot put, high jump, long jump and the 60-meter dash.
Two other noteworthy Minnesota efforts came from senior Adam Freed, who won the 400-meter dash (49.36), and senior Jeremy Polson, who won the 3000-meter run (8:31.98).
Minnesota next will host Drake, Northern Iowa and Minnesota State next Saturday at the Fieldhouse.