Men’s track takes 10th place in Big Ten Indoor Championship

By Stuart Lieberman

Lesiba Masheto was the highlight of a disappointing finish for the Illinois men’s track team last weekend at the Big Ten Indoor Championships in Bloomington, Ind.

Masheto smashed the Illini record in the 600-meter run with a time of 1:16.28. He broke Zach Glavish’s time of 1:16.96, set in 2005. A potential All-American, Masheto was only .09 seconds off Minnesota’s Tom Gerding’s collegiate record set in 2001.

“He was our shining moment,” head coach Wayne Angel said.

Aside from Masheto, the Illini did not perform up to Angel’s expectations. The Illini finished in tenth place with 36 total points.

“I was disappointed at the outcome,” Angel said. “I thought we could have and should have finished higher.”

    Sign up for our newsletter!

    Another bright spot was Nick Brown, who took second place in the long jump with a mark of 24’09.00” and fourth place in the triple jump with a mark of 50’09.50″.

    The 4×400 meter relay team, composed of Masheto, Paul Johnson, Scott Phelps and Isaiah Robbins, took fifth place with a time of 3:13.14. Unfortunately, the team did not step up as a whole.

    “The kids have to want it more than you, and they didn’t do that,” Angel said.

    With such a young indoor team, the Illini have room to improve.

    “Maturity levels and confidence played a part in this past weekend,” Angel said. “The internal leadership was just not strong enough.”

    Next weekend, some of the Illini will travel to Ames, Iowa to compete in the Iowa State Last Chance Qualifier, while others will head to South Bend, Ind., to compete in the Alex Wilson Invitational.