March 23, 2013
STARKVILLE, Miss. - First-place finishes by freshman Oarabile Babolayi and sophomore Althia Maximilien led the charge for the Missouri State track and field team here Saturday (March 23) at the Mississippi State Conference Challenge.
Babolayi took the gold in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 1:00.05, about a half-second better than the second-place finisher. The win was especially impressive because it was Babolayi's debut appearance in the outdoor event.
Maximilien clocked a time of 54.26 to win the 400-meter dash in dominant fashion, out-racing the runner-up by more than 1.4 seconds.
In all, eight Missouri State student-athletes earned new personal-best marks at the meet, which also featured women's teams from Mississippi State, Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana Tech and Purdue.
Freshman Holly Pattie-Belleli picked up three new personal best times and distances, including debut performances in the 200-meter dash (26.43) and long jump (5.77m), and a new best time in the 100-meter hurdles (15.30).
Babolayi (14.38) and sophomore Haley Scott (16.51) also earned personal bests in the 100-meter hurdles, and placed eighth and 16th, respectively.
Sophomore Shawnisha Damisch clocked a career-best time in the 400-meter hurdles, 1:05.28, and placed seventh in the event.
Scott and freshman Betsy Borgsmiller posted top-10 finishes and new best distances in the high jump. Borgsmiller placed fourth tied her career high with a mark of 1.60 meters, while Scott was seventh (1.50m) in her outdoor high jump debut.
Senior Kimsue Grant claimed second place in the long jump and triple jump with distances of 6.21 meters and 11.63 meters, respectively.
Three MSU jumpers saw their personal bests fall in the long jump, as Gemma Smith (5.82m, ninth), Robiann Broomfield (5.75m, 11th) and Scott (5.43m, 16th) posted strong showings in that event. Pattie-Belleli's outdoor long jump debut saw her place 10th with a distance of 5.77 meters.
Missouri State will resume competition on March 30 at the Razorback Spring Invitational in Fayetteville, Ark. The meet is scheduled to start at 9:30 a.m. CDT.