In his first throw of the 2015 indoor track and field season, Michael Lihrman picked up right where he left off.
The University of Wisconsin senior and 2014 national champion broke his own national record in the weight throw on Saturday at the Shell with an effort of 80 feet, 3½ inches.
Unfortunately for his teammates, that hot start didn’t carry over as both the UW men and women lost their dual meets to Minnesota.
“The sport is the winner today,” UW director of track and field and cross country Mick Byrne said. “Nobody cared about times today. It was all about beating your Minnesota competitor or Minnesota beating Wisconsin.”
Ryan Davis (400 meters) and Morgan McDonald (mile) both won their respective events for the No. 16 UW men, who were competing head-to-head with the Golden Gophers for the first time since 1978. But those performances weren’t enough to prevent a 98-59 defeat.
On the women’s side, Deanna Latham won three events — the long jump, triple jump and 60-meter hurdles — but the No. 22 Badgers fell 85-77.
Kelsey Card took the top spot in both the weight throw and the shot put, breaking her own school record with a 68-foot, ½-inch heave in the shot. Dodgeville’s Molly Hanson won both the mile (4:48.35)and 800 (2:11.46).
Lauren Chypyha, Maria Avgerinos and Lauren Burich won singles matches, but the injury-ridden Badgers fell to Drake 4-3 in their season opener at Nielsen Tennis Stadium.
“A tough loss today, for sure,” coach Tina Samara said. “The good news is if we can get everyone healthy, we will be a very different team.”