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Mark Kempton

Niko Schultz qualified for the 800 meters final.

Track and Field

Huskers Begin B1G Championships

GENEVA, Ohio - The Nebraska track and field team began competition at the Big Ten Indoor Championships at the SPIRE Institute on Friday. The Huskers recorded fourth-place finishes in four different events to get the meet started.  

Taylor Latimer and Zionn Pearson shared top honors for the Husker women on Friday with fourth-place finishes in their events. Latimer produced yet another school-record performance in the weight throw. Her mark of 73-0 3/4 (22.27m) was her fourth time breaking the school record this season, and she scored five team points with her fourth-place finish. Pearson also scored five team points after her long jump of 19-10 3/4 (6.06m) secured fourth place. It was her best jump this indoor season. 

Maxwell Otterdahl and Till Steinforth led the way for the Husker men with fourth-place finishes in the weight throw and long jump, respectively. Otterdahl's best weight throw mark on the day was 72-1 1/2 (21.98m), while Steinforth jumped 24-6 1/4 (7.47m) in the long jump. Micaylon Moore came in at fifth place in the long jump to add four more team points. His best mark was 24-2 1/2 (7.38m). Steinforth also scored in the pole vault, tying for eighth at 16-6 3/4 (5.05m).

The Husker men's distance medley relay squad of Sadio Fenner, Omar Rodgers, Sam Easley and Bailey Timmons ran a 9:47.92 to place seventh and collect two more team points. 

In preliminary events on the track, Darius Luff clocked a personal-best 7.63 in the 60m hurdles to earn the top qualifying spot in Saturday's final. That moved Luff up to No. 6 in the NCAA this season and improved his No. 3 time in school history. Brithton Senior will join Luff in the final after running a 7.79 in the prelims. 

Nick Bryant showed well in the 600m, finishing in 1:15.92, the second-fastest qualifying time. His personal-best time was also the second-fastest time in school history. 

After five of 18 events on the men's side, the Huskers are in fifth place with 16.5 points. Through six of 18 events on the women's side, the Huskers are in ninth place with 10 points. 

Niko Schultz covered the track in 1:49.11 in the 800m to qualify for the final with the fifth-fastest time. Garrett Kaalund also earned a spot in the 200m final with a 21.06 in prelims. His time was the third-fastest in qualifying. 

Lorenzo Paissan was on the cusp of qualifying for both the 60m and 200m final. He finished ninth in the 200m (21.29) and 10th in the 60m (6.75). Sam Easley finished 10th in the 600m (1:18.64), and Johanna Ilves ran 8.47 in the 60m hurdles and placed 12th. Brynna McQuillen posted a personal-best time of 16:36.38 to finish 13th in the 5,000m.

Axelina Johansson just missed on a top-eight finish in the weight throw by taking ninth at 61-7 1/2 (18.78m). Jessica Gardner finished 10th in the pole vault for the Big Red, clearing 13-1 (3.99m). Drake Burton was 11th in the men's pole vault at 16-6 3/4 (5.05m). Ashley McElmurry (18-8, 5.69m) and Peace Omonzane (18-8, 5.69m) were 11th and 12th, respectively, in the long jump.

In the pentathlon, Madi Scholl cleared a personal-best 5-9 1/4 (1.76m) to win the high jump portion of the competition. Favour Wanjoku placed third in the long jump with a mark of 19-4 3/4 (5.91m) and added a personal-best toss of 36-11 1/2 (11.26m) in the shot put to take sixth. Kerrigan Meyers provided NU's top pentathlon finish in the 60m hurdles, clocking an 8.63 to finish fifth.

Scholl finished with a career-best 3,632 points to lead the Huskers in 13th place. 

Matthias Algarin opened the heptathlon with a pair of fifth-place finishes in the 60m (7.08) and the long jump (22-8, 6.91m). Kolby Heinerikson was Nebraska's top finisher in the heptathlon shot put with a mark of 41-10 3/4 (12.77m).

Algarin enters Saturday's final three events with 2,876 points, good for fifth place overall. Heinerikson has 2,840 points and is in ninth place. 

The Huskers will return to action tomorrow at 10 a.m. (CT) with the heptathlon 60m hurdles. Field events begin at 10:30 a.m., and track events start at 12:20 p.m.