Surging Rebels Head to Iowa for Final Pre-Championships Tuneup
Sean Tobin (pictured) and Robert Domanic will run their first their first 3000m races of the 2016 season.
Feb. 11, 2016

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OXFORD, Miss. -- Believe it or not, it's already mid-February, and that means the final indoor track & field meet before Ole Miss enters its championship season at the Southeastern Conference and NCAA meets.

The No. 23 Ole Miss women and Rebel men will face some of the best competition in the country, especially in the middle and long distance races, this Friday and Saturday at the 25th annual Iowa State Classic in Ames, Iowa.

Competition begins Friday at 11 a.m. CT and continues Saturday at 10 a.m. CT.

Among the huge field of teams that will assemble at the Lied Recreation Center are nationally ranked women's teams in No. 4 Florida, No. 6 Kansas State, No. 10 Wisconsin, No. 12 Kentucky, No. 13 Stanford, No. 16 Notre Dame, No. 21 LSU, No. 22 Oklahoma State and No. 23 Ole Miss.

Nationally ranked men's teams include No. 1 Florida, No. 3 Virginia Tech, No. 4 LSU, No. 8 Arkansas, No. 11 Stanford, No. 15 Alabama, No. 21 Syracuse, No. 23 Purdue and No. 24 Oklahoma State.

Goals for head coach Connie Price-Smith's Rebels this weekend will be to solidify their team for the SEC Championships and to try for individual marks that will rank among the top 16 nationally that qualify for the NCAA Indoor Championships. The top 12 schools in each relay event also advance to nationals.

As it stands today, Rebels who would qualify for NCAAs include the men's distance medley relay squad of Robert Domanic, Ryan Manahan, Craig Engels and Sean Tobin (9:30.48 -- 4th in NCAA), Manahan in the 800m (1:47.37 -- 6th in NCAA), Engels in the 800m (1:47.75 -- 11th in NCAA), Raven Saunders in the women's shot put (18.98m/62-3.25 -- 1st in NCAA) and women's weight throw (20.78m/68-2.25 -- 9th in NCAA) and Lindsey Murray in the women's pole vault (4.29m/14-0.75 -- 9th in NCAA).

The SEC indoor meet is Feb. 26-27 in Fayetteville, Arkansas, while the NCAA indoor meet is March 11-12 in Birmingham, Alabama.

Notables:

  • The Ole Miss women re-entered the USTFCCCA national rankings at No. 23 this week.
  • In the Rebels' last three outings, they have racked up an amazing 30+ indoor personal bests at each meet.
  • Sophomore Raven Saunders owns the world lead and is No. 3 on the all-time collegiate performers list with the fifth-farthest shot put ever by a collegian (18.98m/62-3.25) at the Vanderbilt Invitational. She broke her own Ole Miss and SEC records, while also establishing new meet and facility records.
  • Saunders has three of the four best shot puts in the world and the top 11 shot puts in the NCAA this season. She has topped 18 meters nine times this season; no one else in the NCAA has done it once.
  • Last week, Saunders broke the Ole Miss weight throw record with a personal-best 20.78m/68-2.25 that ranks her No. 9 in the NCAA this year.
  • The men's distance medley relay squad of Robert Domanic, Ryan Manahan, Craig Engels and Sean Tobin placed fourth at the Penn State National, which is also the fourth-best time in the NCAA this year. They broke the 31-year-old school record by eight seconds.
  • Manahan and Engels rank sixth and 11th in the NCAA this year in the 800m with times of 1:47.37 and 1:47.75.
  • Ole Miss boasts the top four milers in the SEC and six of the top 10 this year.
  • Sophomore Lindsey Murray is the first Ole Miss woman to ever clear 14 feet in the pole vault, indoors or outdoors, with her school-record clearance of 4.29m/14-0.75 at the Vanderbilt Invitational. She ranks ninth in the NCAA this year.
  • A total of seven indoor school records have fallen this season. Others besides Saunders, Murray and the men's DMR include Ryan Walling in the men's 3000m (8:00.50), Bo Ummels in the women's mile (4:47.10) and the women's DMR squad of Britt Ummels, Jolie Carbo, Leanne Zimmer and Shelby Brown (11:28.27).
  • With the dramatic improvements in the weight throw by Dempsey McGuigan (20.46m/67-1.5) and Kevin Conway (20.43m/67-0.5), they are quickly approaching Stacy Andrews' 2003 school record of 68-3.75.

For more information on Ole Miss Track & Field, follow the Rebels on Twitter at @OleMissTrack, as well as Facebook and Instagram.


 

 

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