Nemeth wins Steeplechase at historic Penn Relays
April 27, 2003
PHILADELPHIA- Memphis Distance runner Mate Nemeth won the 3000m Steeplechase at the historic Penn Relays this weekend. He broke his own school record and represented Memphis on the grandest track stage of all. The Penn Relays features more than 22,000 athletes from high school, college and professional athletes from all over the world. The meet is attended by over 100,000 fans over the three days making it the best attended track event in the United States each year, and one of the best attended in the world.
This success of the 2003 track team continued with Nemeth's victory at the Penn Relays. He ran an 8:49.92 in the event defeating over 40 of the nation's finest collegiate athletes in the event.
Nemeth is the first Memphis Tiger to win an event at the Penn Relays since 1973 when All-American Ed Hammonds won the 100-yard dash with a time of 9.40. In fact, Hammonds' teammate All-American Lynn Fox placed second in the event giving Memphis a historic 1-2 finish. The duo was the feature of a front-page story in the "Philadelphia Inquirer" the next day back in 1973.
Distance runner Adam Didyk competed in the 5000m run recording a time of 14:38.80. Memphis also entered four relay teams in the meet. The 4x100m Relay team consisting of Ivan Williams, Michael Woods, Gergely Nemeth, and Franck Diadhiou ran a 41.21 to finish fourth in a preliminary heat. The 4x400m Relay team of Gergely Nemeth, Ivan Williams, Austin Hunter and Andre Lucas won its preliminary heat, but running against time failed to qualify for the finals with a time of 3:13.32. The Distance Medley Relay consisting of Ferenc Bekesi, Istvan Kerekjarto, Preston Taylor and Mate Nemeth team placed eighth with a time of 9:57.06. A Sprint Medley Relay team ran a 3:23.58 to place sixth at the meet. The sprint relay team was comprised of Gergely Nemeth, Franck Diadhiou, Istvan Kerekjarto and Mate Nemeth.
Nemeth's victory combined with the great showings of all four relay teams put this year's Penn Relays as one of the most successful in Memphis Track & Field history.