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Rivaldo Leacock helped the Lobo men break the school record in the 4x400-meters last week, and will be in action again this weekend at the New Mexico Collegiate Classic.

Preview: New Mexico Collegiate Classic brings primetime competition to Albuquerque

by Evan O'Kelly

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – The largest track meet of the indoor season to date kicks off on Friday morning, with more than 1,500 competitors entered in the New Mexico Collegiate Classic this weekend at the Albuquerque Convention Center.

Action begins at 9 a.m. on Friday with events being contested well into the evening. The two-day meet resumes on Saturday at 9:30 a.m. Live video will be available through FloTrack online here and live results will be available online here. The full meet schedule can be viewed online here.

Elizabeth White is scheduled to compete in both the long jump and 60-meters, and is coming off a personal best in the latter event with a time of 7.73 seconds (7.71) last week. She will again look to challenge the school record in the long jump, where her season-best leap of 6.22 meters (20’ 5”) was 0.25 inches shy of the top all-time Lobo indoor mark.

The men’s long jump will feature both Lokesh Sathyanathan and Jake Burkey, who have each posted solid marks this season. Burkey’s season-best leap of 7.52 meters (24’ 8.25”) was the second- longest by any Mountain West athlete this season, while Sathyanathan’s distance of 7.37 meters (24’ 2.25”) stands fourth among conference competitors.

Aidan Quinn and Darryl Thomas are entered in the men’s triple jump, which will take place on Saturday at 1 p.m. Mikyla Harkley, who is coming off a leap of 12.09 meters (39’ 8”) in the triple jump last week, will compete again on Saturday at 11:30 a.m.

The first track action of the weekend will put a large collection of Lobos on display, as nine men and women are entered in the 200-meters starting at 1:30 p.m. on Friday. On the men’s side, Gal Arad, Victor Akhalu, and Ayoub El Ashmawi are scheduled to compete. El Ashmawi hit a PR in the event last week, notching a time of 21.82 seconds (21.75). Arad is also entered in the 60-meters, which are set for Saturday at 9:50 a.m.

Brodie Young, Rivaldo Leacock, Jevon O’Bryant and Jovahn Williamson will team up on Saturday afternoon to recreate last week’s record-setting 4×400-meter relay squad. That group raced to a time of 3:08.81 minutes (3:08.37) to break the UNM indoor record, and will stack up again this week with the top Mountain West time of the season thus far under their belt. The relay squad will each also participate in the invitational 400-meters, which closes the meet program on Friday evening at 7:15 p.m.

After they broke the school record in the 4×400-meter relay, the team of Rebecca Grieve, Tianna Holmes, Logan Neely, and Annamaria Leszczynska will be back in action to close out the meet on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. They’ll look to challenge their time of 3:40.21 minutes (3:39.77) that they ran on Jan. 21 at the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Invitational. Grieve and Holmes are each also scheduled to compete in the women’s invitational 400-meters, set for Friday night at 6:45 p.m.

The women’s sprint crew will also feature Mckenna Watson, Aleksandra Wolczak, Analisa Ibarra, Maria Cisneros Llamazares, Alexandra Adams, and Leigh James each entered in the 200-meters. Watson continued to push the UNM school records in both the 60-meters and 200-meters last week, running PR times of 7.57 seconds (7.55) and 24.02 seconds (23.95), respectively. Cisneros Llamazares and Adams, who is coming off a PR of 8.34 seconds (8.32) in the 60-meters, will join Watson in both events this weekend. Ibarra and James meanwhile will also participate in the 400-meters on Friday, while Wolczak and James are each entered in the 60-meter hurdles set for 9:30 a.m. Saturday. That trio along with Watson is set to form a secondary 4×400-meter relay squad as well.

Neely and Leszczynska will also be featured in the 400-meters, as they are scheduled to compete on Saturday at 1:45 p.m.

Lilee Kaasch and Zennia Gonzalez will kick off the meet for the Lobos on Friday morning, competing in the long jump at 9 a.m. Kaasch will also participate in the triple jump on Saturday at 11:30 a.m. Kaasch holds season-bests of 5.27 meters (17’ 3.5”) in the long jump and 11.54 meters (37’ 10.5”) in the triple jump, while Gonzalez posted a mark of 5.32 meters (17’ 5.5”) at last week’s New Mexico Team Open.

Coming off a PR in the pole vault last weekend, Kailey Ludwig will be back in action after clearing a height of 3.22 meters (10’ 6.75”). The true freshman is also scheduled to run in the 60-meters, where she clocked in at 8.62 seconds (8.60) last weekend. Joining Ludwig in the pole vault and 60-meters will be Abbie Schwieder, who had season bests in both events last week. Schwieder matched Ludwig at 3.22 meters (10’ 6.75”) in the pole vault, and ran a time of 8.61 seconds (8.59) in the 60-meters. Alyssa Gregory will join that duo in both events as well, after hitting a season-best 60-meter time of 8.61 seconds (8.59) last week and hit her pole vault PR of 3.55 meters (11’ 7.75”) on Jan. 21.

While it’s a light week for UNM’s distance crew, Ethan Brouw, Matthew Larkin, Klara Dess, and Sarah Eckel are all entered in the invitational 800-meters set for Friday night at 6:30 p.m. Larkin is coming off a huge PR in the mile last week at 4:03.45 minutes (4:08.87), and he carries an 800-meter PR of 1:48.20 minutes into this week’s meet. Brouw’s PR in the event sits at 1:50.76 minutes (1:51.38), while Dess enters at 2:07.24 minutes and Eckel at 2:05.24 minutes. Lauren Bettencourt ran her fastest 800-meter time in a Lobo uniform last week at 2:24.21 minutes (2:25.02), and will compete again on Saturday alongside the unattached Danielle Verster.

In other action, Adam Giron will take on the high jump on Friday at 3:15 p.m., and Alyssa Magallanez will compete in the women’s high jump on Friday at 5:30 p.m. Gannon Christman will race in the 60-meter hurdles for the second straight weekend, after posting a time of 8.59 seconds (8.57) last week.

The Lobos will also put forth their first multi-event competitors of the season, as Kora Pettengill and Victoria Plummer will each participate in the heptathlon throughout Friday. It will be Pettengill’s first collegiate multi event, while Plummer has a lifetime best heptathlon score of 3352 which she achieved on Feb. 25, 2022 at the Mountain West Championships.