Women break 24-year-old American indoor relay record at Dr. Sander Invitational

Women break 24-year-old American indoor relay record at Dr. Sander Invitational

Provided by USATF

NEW YORK CITY -- Professional, collegiate and high school athletes shined Saturday at the Dr. Sander Invitational at the Armory, just one week ahead of the 111th NYRR Millrose Games in New York.

The quartet of Olympian Deajah Stevens (Sleepy Hollow, New York / USATF New York), Kyra Jefferson (Gainesville, Florida / USATF Florida), Daina Harper (Fayetteville, Arkansas / USATF Arkansas) and Asha Ruth (New York, New York / USATF New York) ran a smooth 4x200m relay to victory over Jamaica in 1:32.67, setting a new American indoor record in the process. Their time (pending ratification) breaks the previous record of 1:33.24 set in 1994.

Select highlights from the Dr. Sander Invitational / Columbia Challenge will be available on USATF.TV+.

Following a bevy of college finals, Olympian and 2012 World Champion Ryan Whiting (Harrisburg, Pennsylvania / USATF Arizona) kicked off the professional events with an easily won men’s shot put competition. Whiting threw 19.99m/65-07 on his first attempt to secure his title over the next best throw of 19.45m/63-09.75.

Olympic gold medalist Courtney Okolo (Dallas, Texas / USATF Southwestern) took top honors in the women’s 400m with 51.89 in a stacked field that included Harper and Jefferson.

In the women’s 3000m, Lauren Paquette (Little Rock, Arkansas / USATF Tennessee) pushed her way to the front to clinch first in 8:53.09. Paquette sat behind leaders until gaining traction with five laps to go ahead of Sarah Pagano (Ringwood, New Jersey / USATF New England) close behind in second. With three laps remaining, Paquette exerted a final burst of speed and established a nearly five second lead to carry her through the line. On the men’s side, Reid Buchanan (Manhattan, Kansas / USATF Southern California) held off Travis Mahoney (Old Bridge, New Jersey / USATF New York) on the final lap to win 7:51.98-7:52.15.

The men’s 1 mile run boasted five sub-4 performances. Craig Engels (Pfafftown, North Carolina / USATF Southern) kicked hard to the end in 3:57.35, followed by Julian Oakley (Providence, Rhode Island / USATF New England), Charlie Grice, Pat Casey (Laurel, Montana / USATF Oregon) and Sam Prakel (Versailles, Ohio / USATF Ohio). High school senior Brodey Hasty (Brentwood, Tennessee / USATF Tennessee) nearly clinched his sub-4 mile goal, clocking in at 4:03.26 to place thirteenth.

In a formidable men’s 800m field, Erik Sowinski (Waukesha, Wisconsin / USATF Iowa) came out on top ahead of Olympic bronze medalist Clayton Murphy (New Paris, Ohio / USATF Oregon), USATF Outdoors champion Robby Andrews (Manalapan Township, New Jersey / USATF New Jersey) and 2016 4x400m World Indoor Champion Chris Giesting (Batesville, Indiana / USATF New York). Sowinski, who is chasing the World Indoor Championships standard, went out early and maintained a consistent lead through the line in 1:46.98.

On the collegiate side, Missouri’s Karissa Schweizer (Urbandale, Iowa / USATF Missouri Valley) held her own among the professional runners in the women’s mile and finished third in 4:27.54. The 2016 NCAA DI Cross Country champion’s time breaks Mizzou’s record and is currently fourth fastest overall in NCAA history.

Defending 800m winner Ajee’ Wilson (Neptune, New Jersey / USATF Mid-Atlantic) retained her title at Dr. Sander Invitational. Wilson ran 59.61 for the first 400m and was nearly caught by Charlene Lipsey (Hempstead, New York / USATF Southern) however, she ultimately edged out the competition in 2:00.09.

This year, the meet implemented a new procedure for the jump invitational events. Following the first three jumps, the top four advanced to the semi-finals, where they went head-to-head to determine the final two. Two jumps between the finalists decided the winner of the $2000 grand prize, followed by $600 for each of the three semi-finalists.

American Donald Scott (Ypsilanti, Michigan / USATF Michigan) was ultimately crowned men’s triple jump champion after leaping 16.87m/55-04.25 in a final against Chris Carter (Austin, Texas / USATF Gulf).