Track and Field

Track and Field

Illini get another shot at tennis title

IOWA CITY, Iowa – Illinois and Ohio State, the Big Ten's dominant men's tennis programs, will duke it out for another league tournament title today.

The 15th-ranked Illini advanced with a 4-1 win against Wisconsin in Saturday's semifinals. The two-time defending champion Buckeyes, ranked second nationally, topped Michigan 4-1.

Minor a major contributor

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Illinois' bid to make the NCAA women's tennis tournament received a boost with Friday's 4-3 upset of No. 34 Ohio State in the first round of the Big Ten tournament.

The 43rd-ranked Illini, behind another clutch effort by Kristina Minor, rallied to reach the semifinals for the first time since 2003. They'll play top-ranked Northwestern today.

Buckley nabs national honor

ATHENS, Ga. – Illinois freshman gymnast Allison Buckley became Illinois' first NCAA All-American by tying for sixth place on the balance beam Thursday at the national championships.

Buckley, the Big Ten Freshman of the Year, tallied a 9.825 on the beam to earn the honor.

Freshman Ruggeri claims high bar crown

PALO ALTO, Calif. – Paul Ruggeri has a lot to live up to the next three years.

On Saturday, the freshman won the high bar national championship and was an All-American in the vault and floor exercise.

Chin, Illini give Gophers fits in men's tennis

MINNEAPOLIS – Freshman Waylon Chin clinched No. 17 Illinois' 5-2 men's tennis victory Friday against Minnesota with his 6-4, 6-1 triumph at No. 5 singles.

Chin teamed with senior Brandon Davis to earn a win at No. 3 doubles.

Golfers play it cool

URBANA – Illinois is in second place after shooting an opening-round 309 Saturday at the Fighting Illini Invitational at Stone Creek Golf Club. Conditions were tough on players throughout the day with a mix of sub-30-degree wind chills and off-and-on precipitation.

"The weather was as mean and as difficult as I've seen in a long, long time on the golf course," Illinois coach Mike Small said.

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Illini rally in ninth

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Illinois scored four runs in the top of the ninth to defeat Indiana 8-7 in a Big Ten baseball game Saturday.

Ben Reeser retired the Hoosiers in order in the bottom half of the inning to earn his fourth save. Center fielder Kyle Hudson recorded his second career four-hit game, while Daniel Webb homered and went 3 for 4 with two RBI.

Winckler plans to continue teaching world-class runners

CHAMPAIGN – Gary Winckler decided two years ago that 2008 would be his final season as a collegiate track and field coach.

But don't look for the veteran Illinois women's coach to quit cold turkey. You'll still be able to find him on some track, tutoring postcollegiate athletes like two-time world champion hurdler Perdita Felicien.

Winckler stepping down as women's track coach

CHAMPAIGN – Gary Winckler, who coached the Illinois women's track and field team to 11 Big Ten titles, announced this morning he will retire at the end of the outdoor season after 23 years at the school.

Winckler will be succeeded by UI associate head coach Tonja Buford-Bailey, a 10-time Illini All-American who is in her sixth season on Winckler's staff.