PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - The Mississippi State University women's 4x1500-meter relay team ran a school-record 18 minutes, 9.43 seconds to finish sixth at the 112th Penn Relays. The Lady Bulldogs led off with junior Jen McPherson (Nampa, Idaho) and followed with junior Joy Griffith (Tuscaloosa, Ala.), senior Zita Magloire (Tallahassee, Fla.) and sophomore Annie Falor (Flagstaff, Ariz).
"The women ran great. We beat a lot of middle distance and distance powerhouses," said MSU head coach Al Schmidt. "Jen (McPherson) had us in second after her lap. We beat some good teams. We were right there with the best in the country. The women are having a good meet so far."
The 4x1500 was the first SEC school to cross the line with Stanford, Villanova, N.C. State, Duke and Providence finishing ahead of the Lady Bulldogs. SEC rival Arkansas finished 11th, running 19:01.21.
The men's 4x400-meter relay team of juniors Bruce Davis (Phenix City, Ala.), Ezra Jones (Wildwood, Fla.) and Nathan Daniels (New Iberia, La.) and sophomore all-American Elzie Coleman took second in their heat, running a regional-qualifying 3:08.40. In the women's 4x200-meter relay, freshmen Marrissa Harris (Memphis, Tenn.) and Antrese Banks (Gloster, Miss.) preluded senior Lauren Johnson (Scottsboro, Ala.) and freshman Gabrielle Dillon (Liberty, Miss.), who clocked a season's best 1:38.49.
Freshman Janelle Finley leaped 38 feet, two inches in the women's triple jump, while sophomore Tim Williams took seventh in the men's high jump after clearing 6-08 ¼.
The Bulldogs' sprint medley relay failed to finish the event after dropping the baton during the second exchange.
"The men's sprint medley may have been our chance to win on the men's side, but we've got the 4x4 consolation race tomorrow," Schmidt added. "The women have the 4x800 relay, and they're a good team. It's Zita's (Magloire) last Penn Relays, and as a distance group, the last relay together for them, so there's something special about it."
The final day of action begins at 6 a.m. CT on Saturday at Franklin Field.