TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Nearly a year has passed since Florida State’s Maudie Skyring posted her personal-best 1500-meter time at the Bryan Clay Invitational.
The junior from Australia will return to the Bryan Clay Invitational next week with a new personal-best following her Thursday night Invitational 1500-meter victory at the Crimson Tide Invitational. Skyring closed with her fastest lap of the night (65 seconds) and held off Alabama’s Esther Gitahi to win in 4:18.65.
Dipping under 4:20 for the first time, Skyring climbed from 30th to 14th nationally by taking more than two seconds off her previous best (4:20.82).
Skyring wasn’t the only Nole to post a personal-best in the first event of the two-day meet, which continues Friday at the Sam Bailey Track & Field Complex. Four of six Noles in the race posted lifetime bests, including Megan Mooney (4:28.23), Kayla Easterly (4:28.34) and Addi Coggins, whose 4:28.54 was nearly four seconds faster than her previous best.
Senior Althea Hewitt joined the personal-best parade a few minutes later. In what may be her final race in an FSU uniform, Hewitt chased down teammate Jennifer Hewitt with two laps remaining and claimed the 5000-meter title in 17:23.62; a five-second improvement over her previous best.
The Noles grabbed the top four spots in the field with Lima (17:29.11), Ella Swigler (17:31.39) and Erin Phelps (17:33.59) chasing Hewitt across the finish line.
In the lone men’s event of the opening night involving Seminoles, seniors Michael Hall and Istvan Szogi finished 2-3 in the 1500-meter run with identical times of 3:49.36. Hall got the finish line photo nod after closing in 58.04 over the final 400, while Szogi narrowly missed eclipsing his 2016 personal-best (3:49.19), which he set in a sixth-place finish at the Hungarian National Championships.
It was a strong start for the seventh-ranked FSU women and eight-ranked men, who will resume action at approximately 11 a.m. (ET) Friday against the 10-team field, which includes Alabama (No. 5 men/No. 8 women), Mississippi State (No. 11 men), as well as Southern Miss, Nebraska, Memphis and Indiana State.
Several Noles will be making their season-opening appearances, including high jumper Eleonora Omoregie, competing for the first time since the 2018 ACC Outdoor Championships. Among others back after layoffs are ACC Indoor Track Performer of the Year Kasaun James (100-meter dash), ACC Indoor long jump champion Rougui Sow and Jogaile Petrokaite, whose last outdoor meet was the 2017 NCAA East Preliminary.
Senior Darryl Haraway will compete in the 100 and 200 in his first outdoor action since the 2018 NCAA Championships.
You can follow the action via Twitter @FSU_Track and Instagram @fsu_track, which will include a team take-over.