While many students were focused on Butler basketball, senior Kris Gauson was focused on making history at the Alex Wilson Invitational at Notre Dame March 5.
He became the second runner in Butler history and the 21st runner with Scottish citizenship to break the four-minute mile mark.
“He’s a member of an exclusive club now,” Butler head coach Matt Roe said. “It’s an amazing feat.”
Despite Gauson’s historic run, he became the first mile runner to run a sub-four minute mile and not qualify for the NCAA championships.
“It was just a really fast meet this year,” Roe said. “We caught a tough break with Kris, but it was still a great race.”
Sophomore Kirsty Legg found herself in a similar situation.
With a time of 4:40.25, Legg re-broke the school record she set earlier this season. The time was good enough for fourth at the meet but did not qualify her for the NCAA championships.
Gauson and Legg were not the only Bulldogs to run well in South Bend, Ind.
Freshman Ross Clarke bolstered his reputation of being one of the fastest freshman in the country with a sixth-place finish and a time of 4:02.81.
“He ran really well in the fastest section of the mile,” Roe said. “Statistically, he’s the third fastest freshman in the NCAA this year.”
“It was a great meet for us,” Roe said. “Between Kris [Gauson], Kirsty [Legg], Ross [Clarke] and Craig [Jordan], we had four lifetime bests.”
Last weekend, half of the team traveled to California for the Stanford Invitational.
Sophomore distance runner Lauren McKillop set a new Butler record in the women’s 10,000-meter with a time of 35:24.28.
McKillop was one of six Butler runners to record lifetime best times at the event.
Separated by less than a second, seniors Justin Roeder and Tom Boardman finished 13th and 14th, respectively, in the men’s 10,000-meter. Both ran lifetime bests.
Freshman distance runner Callum Hawkins ran in section three of the 5,000-meter, finishing fifth with another lifetime best time of 14:17.57.
Butler also competed in the Polar Bear Invitational, hosted by Indiana-Wesleyan, on Saturday. Even without the usual cast of runners, the Bulldogs ran extremely well.
Sophomore Shelbi Burnett and senior Rosie Edwards took the top two positions in the women’s 1,500-meter and junior Lauren Haberkorn finished second in the 5,000-meter.
Freshman sprinter Thomas Brueggeman took first in both the 100-yard dash and the 200-yard dash with times of 11.26 and 22.38.
Fellow freshman Andrew Wallace finished second in the 800-meter with a time of 1:59.75, three-tenths of a second behind the winner, senior Jason Wenzel of Indiana-Wesleyan.
Senior distance runner Matt Lawder took the 3,000-meter steeplechase title home for Butler. His time of 10:01.49 was more than seven seconds ahead of the second place finisher.
The full Bulldogs’ team will next run at the Mike Poehlein Invitational, hosted by Purdue University, beginning Friday.