This weekend the Hoosiers secured numerous victories at the Gladstein Invitational. On the first day of the meet, the IU men’s team won three events and an IU alum returned back to Bloomington, Indiana.
Nike athlete Andy Bayer, who graduated from IU in 2013, was able to compete in the invitational and won the men’s 3,000-meter fast section with a time of 7:54.88.
The current students on the Hoosier team followed up Bayer's performance with victories of their own.
Senior Andrew Miller started the Hoosiers off well by taking the win and creating a new personal Hoosier record in the weight throw with a mark of 21.50 meters.
Freshman Zubin Muncherji won the 400-meter fast section with the time of 48.66. In the 60-meter hurdles, sophomore William Session won the men’s race with a time of 7.93.
IU Coach Ron Helmer mentioned that the team's success could be attributed to the good overall team spirits and morale.
“This is the time of year where all the athletes are starting to look good and the young ones are starting to impress us," Helmer said. "So we come into these meets with high energy and optimism.”
The second day of the Gladstein Invitational proved to be even more successful for the Hoosiers. The team won eight events in the field and 13 events in total for the day.
The relay teams dominated the weekend, taking the win in both the 4x800-meter and 4x400-meter races.
The 4x800 team consisting of sophomore Bryce Millar, freshman Teddy Browning, freshman Marcus Ellington and junior Joe Murphy took first with a time of 7:42.78. The 4x400 team was was led by Muncherji, and along with freshman Isaiah Ware, junior Derek Grimmer and senior Daniel Kuhn, they crossed the finish line first with the time of 3:14.87.
Browning said the team has been working together well, and he said it is definitely one of the team’s strengths.
“It really is a lot of fun to race with these guys, which is mostly attributed to the whole team," Browning said. "Everyone is so fun to be around and encouraging."
This weekend, Browning competed in the 800-meter fast section race where he took third with a time of 1:54.51. Murphy took second with a time of 1:54.10. Browning is currently ranked No. 8 in the Big Ten rankings, while Murphy is ranked No. 10.
“The competition this week wasn’t as hard as last week," Browning said. "It was a good opportunity for us to see what it feels like to race at the front of the pack and it looks like that's what everyone did, so it went well."
Kuhn won the 600-meter fast section with the time of 1:17.90, which is currently the No. 1 spot in the Big Ten rankings. Muncherji finished third overall with the time of 1:21.99.
For the field events the Hoosiers were able to pull eight wins.
Junior David Schall started the Hoosiers off with a win in the men’s shot put with the final mark of 17.71 meters. Schall is currently ranked No. 2 in the Big Ten and No. 11 in the NCAA rankings from his performance at the Tennessee Duals.
Freshman Jyles Etienne returned to the field for his second performance this season and won the men’s high jump with the mark of 2.07 meters. The Nassau, Bahamas, native currently holds the No. 1 spot in the Big Ten rankings and the No. 5 spot in the NCAA rankings from his performance at the Hoosier Open on Dec. 8, 2017.
As the Hoosiers wrapped up the weekend, Helmer mentioned that the team did really well, but the competition is only going to get tougher, so the team must continue to improve as well.
“This was a meet that we needed, it was solid competition for where we are right now but it’s kind of grind time for us now," Helmer said. "We know now that the meet after this will be even more competitive than the one before it and so on and we will just have to be ready for it.”