By DANNY P. SMITH
Mississippi State women's long-distance runner Haley Greenwell and men's 400-meter hurdler Emanuel Mayers can believe that the new surface at the Carl Maddox Track facility is faster.
Greenwell easily won the women's 3,000 meters at Saturday's SEC-Big 10 Challenge with a time of 9:56.38 and Mayers captured the men's 400-meter hurdles with a mark of 52.82.
Mayers also used the track to his advantage with a second-place finish in the 110 hurdles.
"The track felt really good today," Mayers said. "There was a lot of wind, but the atmosphere with all of the friends and family out here was very good. It definitely carried onto the track and as I was coming home, feeling that environment was very good for me.
"I'm just starting to get into the hurdle phase and working on that. Today was just a trial basis and we wanted to get through and have a good race. I was feeding off the energy of my friends and family."
As he looked around, Mayers knows the future of Bulldog track is in good shape.
"This was what we have been waiting for and it's time well spent," Mayers said of the newly-renovated facility. "It's my senior year and this will be passed on for generations to come. I'm going to enjoy it when I'm an alumni next year."
Greenwell's time in the 3,000 meters was much better than the second-place showing of 10:10.74 put up by Helene DeLone of Indiana.
The result even surprised Greenwell, but knows the competition wasn't like usual.
"The first place girl wasn't here so that was disappointing and I saw Logan (Waites) from Ole Miss pull off when I was running," Greenwell said. "That took points away from the SEC and off competition for me, but it was a really fun race."
The Big 10 had a 30-point margin of victory over the Southeastern Conference on the women's side (379-349), while the Big 10 men out-distanced the SEC 399-337.
MSU sprinter and Starkville native Tavaris Tate came up just short in his quest to win the 400-meter dash in front of his hometown fans.
Thomas Mardaugh of Ohio State secured first in the event with a time of 46.41, while Tate came in a close second with a mark of 46.61 and Bulldog teammate Daundre Barnaby was third at 47.04.
Tate started in lane 4 and led the race briefly going into the second turn, but Murdaugh caught him down the stretch to take the victory.
In the 200-meter dash, Tate came in third with a time of 20.87. Auburn's Harry Adams won the race with a mark of 20.74.
Tate, who has been rehabilitating a torn muscle in his hamstring, knew he wasn't running at his best.
"I felt real confident in my body, but after the 400, I realized that I'm not 100 percent," Tate said. "(The 400) was a big test for me today. I ran all of my races based on faith."
Randy Patterson of MSU won the second heat of the 400 with a time of 48.78, but was only good for ninth overall.
James Harris of the Bulldogs cleared 7-03.75 in the men's high jump, but was listed second behind Indiana's Derek Drouin.
The 4x400 relay team of Tate, Harris, Barnaby and O'Neal Wilder closed the day by winning with a time of 3:05.24.
Another MSU first place came in the women's 100-meter dash in the person of Richesa McCaleb with a time of 11.80.
With McCaleb's help, the Lady Bulldogs had the highest point total on the women's side with 142.50, while the Bulldogs had 116 points to pace the SEC men.
MSU head coach Steve Dudley called the day a success.
“I’m extremely proud of the way our kids competed today,” Dudley said. “Richesa had a huge day. She is getting better and better with every meet. The men’s short hurdles went well, we won the long hurdles, so obviously we got some things done and I thought we competed really, really well. James (Harris) jumping 7-03 plus solidified him even further as a national competitor. We may not have won as a conference, but I think just pulling Mississippi State out and examining them, it was a good day and a good meet."
MSU's D'Angelo Cherry won his heat in the men's 100 meter dash with a time of 10.54, but the mark was good for only sixth overall. Keenan Brock was first in the event at 10.36.
In other first-place results from the Challenge, Indiana's Daniel Stockberger was first in the men's 1,500 meter run with a time of 3:55.90, and Breanne Ehrman of Indiana won the women's 1,500 meter run with a mark of 4:31.65.
Kristin Bridges of Ole Miss was the winner of the women's 400-meter dash with a time of 54.56, while Auburn's Kai Selvon took the women's 200-meter dash with a mark of 23.38, Jared Hall of Ohio State finished first in the men's 800-meter run with a time of 1:52.43, Ruth Christopher of Indiana won the women's 800-meter run with a time of 2:13.32, and Nate Morrow of Indiana claimed the women's 3,000-meter run with a mark of 8:31.16.
Ohio State's Letecia Wright won the women's 100-meter hurdles with a time of 13.18, Indiana's Derek Droutin claimed first in the men's 110 hurdles with a mark of 14.31, and Sofie Persson of Ole Miss dominated the women's 400-meter hurdles with a time of 58.81.
Victoria Brink of Ohio State won the women's 3,000-meter steeplechase with a time of 10:38.47, while Martin Kirui of Ole Miss took the men's 3,000 meter steeplechase with a time of 9:06.65.
In the other relay results, Indiana won the men's 4x100 with a time of 39.84, Auburn captured the women's 4x100 with a mark of 44.39, and Ole Miss won the women's 4x400 relay with a time of 3:36.62.
In the field events, Max Mays of Ohio State captured the men's hammer throw with a toss of 192-10, while Alexis Thomas of Ohio State claimed the women's hammer throw with a toss of 56.55 meters (metric distance listed only), Bill Hardcastle of Purdue took the men's shot put with a toss of 57-05.00, Indiana's Faith Sherrill claimed the women's shot put with a throw of 55-06.25, Mike Hartfield of Ohio State finished first in the men's long jump with a leap of 24-03.75, Leah Eber of Purdue won the women's long jump with a leap of 19-09.75, Kentrell Sanders of Ole Miss won the men's triple jump at 51-00.00, Aria Gaines of Ole Miss claimed the women's triple jump at 41-06.50, Auburn's Maya Pressley won the women's high jump at 5-09.75, William Lauricella of Ohio State claimed the men's javelin throw with a toss of 201-04, Elaine Gilbert captured the women's javelin throw with a toss of 117-05, Chris Thoman claimed the men's pole vault at 16-00.75, Indiana's vera Neuenswander won the women's pole vault with a throw of 13-05.25, Betty Williams of Ole Miss captured the women's discus with a throw of 145-02, and Auburn won the men's discus event.