Jan. 29, 2006
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - University of Maryland sophomore Dominic Berger lowered his season-best in the men's 60-meter hurdles to 7.79 seconds with his victory in that event Saturday at the Penn State National Open indoor track and field meet.
Also for the Terps, junior Meghan Braffet rolled to a victory in the women's 5,000 meters, leading two teammates to ECAC-qualifying times in a strong performance.
Berger has yet to lose a heat this season and continued that streak at Penn State. He won his preliminary heat in 7.93 seconds, qualifying as the top seed for the final. There, he went a school-record 7.79 seconds to win the event by 0.09 seconds over Ronnie Beard of UMES.
Berger's 7.79 would tie him for third in the NCAA national rankings coming into the weekend. He had already provisionally qualified for the NCAA Nationals, to be held in early March in Arkansas.
Braffet went 16:48.58 to win the women's 5K, making her first appearance of the indoor season for the Terps in that event. Teammate Katie Purcell continued her strong start to the indoor season by finishing second in 16:58.37. Those two finishes, along with Cori Koch's eighth-place finish at 17:28.98, were all ECAC-qualifying marks.
Purcell and Braffet also hit ECAC marks with performances in the women's 3,000. Purcell was ninth in 9:49.40, with Braffet ikn 12th at 9:51.83.
Other ECAC qualfiers for the Maryland women this weekend were Renee Clarke, who was third in the 400 meters at 56.52, Danielle Siebert, who went 4:59.11 to place seventh in the mile, and Bria Johnson, who was eighth in the shot put at 46 feet, 4 inches.
Berger had the best mark of the season for Maryland with a sixth-place finish in the men's 200 (21.99), while Anthony Walker went 49.27 to place sixth in the men's 400.
Maryland travels to New York City next weekend to participate in the New Balance Collegiate Open.
WOMEN'S INDIVIDUAL RESULTS (First-place and Maryland finishers)
MEN'S INDIVIDUAL RESULTS