HOUSTON – The Houston Cougar Men’s and Women’s Track & Field teams wrapped up the first day of action at the Charlie Thomas Invitational, hosted by Texas A&M, on Friday.
DAY 1 RECAP
Senior distance runner Maddie Brown stole the show for Houston in a short opening day of the meet inside Gilliam Track Stadium. Brown set a new personal best by over 30 seconds in the 5,000-meter run, when she posted a time of 16:53.99 to win the event. The time for Brown moves her to No. 49 in the NCAA this season and is the second fastest time in program history, sitting just four-hundredths of a second shy of the school record.
Maria Gonzales finished ninth in the 5K with a personal best time of 18:03.05, while Emely Morgado ran 12th in 18:27.44.
In the men’s 5,000-meter run, Houston set a trio of personal bests and also picked up two top-5 finishes, including GJ Reyna who placed third in 14:54.49. Chris Wallace ran the 25-lap race in 14:56.40 to finish fifth, while Devin Fahey crossed the line in 15:15.78 to place 10th.
Sophomore multi-athlete Nate Mechler was the only other Cougar in singles action on Friday, competing in the first four events of the men’s heptathlon. Mechler started the day with a sixth place finish in the 60-meter dash in 7.13 to pick up 837 points, before moving on to place second in the long jump and score 913 points after setting a new personal best with a top mark of 24-3.75 (7.41m).
Mechler took eighth in the men’s shot put after throwing 39-10.0 (12.14m) to earn 615 points in the third event of the competition before wrapping the first day with a fourth place finish in the high jump with another personal best of 6-5.5 (1.97m) to score 776 points.
Mechler totaled 3,141 points on the first day and enters the final three events in fifth place.
ABOUT THE CHARLIE THOMAS INVITATIONAL
The Charlie Thomas Invitational is Houston’s second meet in College Station this indoor season after opening the season there at the Reveille Invitational. The Cougars are competing against the host school Texas A&M as well as Cincinnati, Georgia Tech, Rice, TCU, UT Arlington, UT-San Antonio and South Plains Junior College.
The meet will conclude on Saturday beginning at 10:30 a.m., with the final three events of the men’s heptathlon. The men’s long jump, men’s weight throw and women’s shot put will open the field events at 12:30 p.m., while the preliminary running events are set to begin simultaneously with the women’s 60-meter dash.
UP NEXT FOR HOUSTON
The Cougars split up the squad in three separate ways in the final tuneup weekend before The American Athletic Conference Championships. A select number of athletes will compete at the Tyson Invitational on Feb. 9 & 10 in Fayetteville, Ark., while a handful of athletes will remain at home to run at the Howie Ryan Invitational inside Yeoman Fieldhouse. Houston’s distance runners will head west for the Husky Classic on Feb. 10, in Seattle.
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