Sprint relay teams successful at Penn Relays

The 4x100- and 4x400-meter relays of the Virginia Tech women’s track and field team qualified for the College Championship of America Invitational for the first time in program history at the 123rd Annual Penn Relays, Friday afternoon, held at Franklin Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The Hokie quartet of senior Nora McKiver, juniors Courtney Blanden and Ama-Selina Tchume and freshman Arlicia Bush advanced to the finals in both the women’s 4x100- and 4x400-meter relay events. Of note, only the nine fastest teams qualified for the Championship Invitational.

The four-member crew placed seventh in the women’s 4x100 preliminary round with a time of 45.13 seconds, followed by a third-place finish in the women’s 4x400 qualifying round with a season-best time of 3:34.76.

In the Women’s 4x100 Championship of America Invitational, the Hokie quartet crossed the finish line in 45.12 seconds for seventh place overall. Oregon won the event with a time of 42.35 seconds, followed by Auburn in second with a time of 43.02 seconds. Of note, the Women’s 4x400 Championship of America Invitational is set for tomorrow at 5:50 p.m.

On the men’s side, both the 4x100- and 4x400-meter relays qualified for the College Final set for tomorrow afternoon. Of note, the nine fastest teams qualified for the Championship Invitational, while the next nine fastest squads advanced to the College Final.

The 4x100-meter relay team of senior Dante Price, juniors Darius Watkins and Greg Chiles and freshman Michael Davenport finished with a preliminary time of 41.18 seconds for 17th place. The 4x400-meter relay team – freshman Brandon Thomas and Matthew Baker, Chiles and Davenport – also placed 13th in the qualifying round with a time of 3:11.94. Of note, Friday's 4x400-meter relay mark was the second-fastest time Tech has recorded in the event all season.

The Hokies will resume competition at the Penn Relays tomorrow starting with the Men’s 4x100 College Final at 1:37 p.m. The distance runners also will join the sprinters tomorrow afternoon, as the men compete in both the Men’s 4xMile Championship and the Men’s 4x800 Championship events. On the women’s side, senior Hanna Green and sophomore Rachel Pocratsky set to race in the Olympic Development Mile.

Additionally, Tech’s pole vaulters will travel to Austin, Texas, for the Longhorn Invitational on Saturday, while a contingent of throwers, jumpers, sprinters and distance runners set to compete at the Virginia Grand Prix in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Looking ahead, the Hokies will wrap up their regular season on Wednesday at the Liberty Twilight meet before hosting the Hokie Twilight on Thursday, May 4.

Fans can follow all the action during each meet of the 2017 outdoor season by following the squad on Twitter and Instagram.

For updates on Virginia Tech track & field, follow the Hokies on Twitter

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