Sports

McGorty runs shockingly fast mile at MPSF track and field

 

Stanford's Sean McGorty ran the fastest mile in Stanford track and field history – indoors or outdoors – at the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation indoor championships Saturday.

In a ferocious duel with Washington's Izaic Yorks, McGorty was narrowly beaten. However, York's 3:53.89 and McGorty's 3:53.95 were the two fastest ever by American collegians indoors and rank No. 3 and No. 4 all-time indoors on any-sized track.


Sean McGorty
"I'm pretty shocked," McGorty said.

The times won't count for record purposes because Dempsey Indoor's 307-meter flat track is oversized, meaning it's bigger than the standard 200-meter tracks considered for record purposes.

The collegiate indoor record is 3:52.88 by Arizona's Lawi Lalang, a native of Kenya, in 2014, and the American collegiate record remains the 3:54.54 by BYU's Mike Batty in 2012.

McGorty obliterated the school indoor record of 3:57.14 by Michael Atchoo run on the same track (Stanford includes all track sizes for indoor records) in 2013, and Olympian Jeff Atkinson's outdoor mile mark of 3:55.16 from 1986.

On the final lap, McGorty twice tried to take the lead on the final lap, first on the backstretch and then in a finishing kick, but fell just short of York's 3:53.89. Both were under Atchoo's meet record, as well as the facility standard of 3:54.52 by Chris Solinsky in 2011.

It was the only mile of the season for McGorty, who will bypass the event at the NCAA Indoors on March 11-12 in Birmingham, Alabama, in favor of the 3,000.

The meet schedule allows McGorty, who is a junior academically but a sophomore in eligibility, to anchor Stanford's distance medley relay on Friday and then run the 3,000 on Saturday. The mile requires a qualifying heat Friday.

"I really wanted to get a good mile in, but I had talked with Coach (Chris Miltenberg) and the focus was definitely on racing and focusing on competing."

McGorty's previous mile best was 3:59.34, run on the same track a year ago, but he tipped his hand with a 3:55.8 anchor split over 1,600 in a school-record setting DMR Jan. 29 at Penn State.

Stanford's women finished second to Oregon – its best finish since 2012 – with 73.75 points, and the Cardinal men were sixth, with 51.5.

Olivia Baker was Stanford's only winner among the men or women. Baker, a sophomore, won the women's 800 meters in 2:04.28.

In the women's 3,000, Vanessa Fraser appeared to secure an NCAA berth by running a personal best 9:09.89 in finishing fourth.

Teammate Aisling Cuffe, the NCAA indoor and outdoor 5,000 runner-up in 2014, returned to the track for the first time since that season after recovering from an injury and ran 9:10.59, which puts her on the NCAA qualifying bubble. Those with the top 16 marks in the country earn passage. The fields will be announced in the coming days.

— David Kiefer/Stanford Athletics

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