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Jan. 24, 2014

LEXINGTON, Ky. – The Virginia men’s and women’s track & field teams began competition at the Rod McCravy Memorial Meet with an impressive day one performance on Friday at the University of Kentucky’s Nutter Field House.

The meet, which features two of the top three men’s teams in the nation (No. 2 Florida and No. 3 Oregon) and three of the top six women’s teams (No. 3 Florida, No. 4 Oregon, No. 6 Kentucky), is the top competition in the nation this weekend. The Cavaliers had several strong performances, highlighted by the men’s and women’s distance medley relays.

“It was a very productive day,” said head coach Bryan Fetzer. “We keep improving with each meet, and that is the bottom line at this point of the season. Each time out we set the standard a little higher. The DMRs are something we want to have success in and they ran very well today. Against the best competition in nation, we rose to the challenge and I am proud of that effort. Our veterans continue to lead us and our younger athletes continue to embrace the challenge of competing at this level.”

The men’s distance medley relay of Mike Marsella (Hope Valley, R.I.), Payton Hazzard (Huntington, N.Y.), Anthony Kostelac (Charlottesville, Va.) and Kyle King (Yorktown, Va.) won the race in a time of 9:36.11, the fastest time in the nation this season. The time also set new meet and Nutter Field House records, both of which had stood for nine years. It was also the fourth fastest time in school history.

The women’s distance medley relay of Sara Sargent (Philadelphia, Pa.), Jordan Lavender (Nashville, Tenn.), Vanessa Fabrizio (Denver, Colo.) and Vicky Fouhy (Buckinghamshire, England) finished third in a time of 11:22.32. It is the third best time in the nation this year as the race produced the nation’s top four times in 2014. It is the eighth-best time in school history.

In the men’s 5000m, Zach Herriott ran a PR of 14:27.11 to finish third. Former Cavalier and current volunteer assistant coach Sean Keveren, running for the Ragged Mountain Running Club, won the event in 14:16.18, a new meet record.

In the women’s weight throw, Logan Clements (Swarthmore, Pa.) threw at PR of 15.95m, the ninth best performance in school history.

Up against one of the strongest fields in the nation, Edy Ndem (Roanoke, Va.) finished sixth in the women’s long jump with a PR of 5.87m, just shy of cracking the all-time Virginia top-10.

Virginia had two athletes in the multi-event competitions. In the women’s pentathlon, Anna Finger (Berlin, Germany) finished fifth with a score of 3,517 points. In the men’s heptathlon, first-year Anthony Dunavant (Franklin, Tenn.) is in fifth place after the first day with 2,710 points in his first collegiate heptathlon.

The meet will conclude Saturday with the conclusion of the men’s heptathlon at 10 a.m. and track and field events beginning at noon.

Also on Friday, volunteer assistant coach Charlotte Browning, running for Ragged Mountain Running Club, ran 4:33.80 in the mile, her fastest time since 2010, against an elite field of collegians and professionals at the John Thomas Terrier Invitational in Boston.

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