Spearmon bests Wariner in 200 at UTA meet

ARLINGTON -- Jeremy Wariner ran fast. Wallace Spearmon ran faster.

Spearmon and Wariner ran the fastest times in the world this year in the 200-meter dash Saturday in a star-studded field at the 36th annual Bobby Lane Invitational.

Spearmon's time of 19.95 seconds also was a Maverick Stadium record, breaking the old mark of 20.15 set by Michael Johnson in 1993.

"I'm back!" Spearmon screamed after crossing the finish line and seeing his time. "Let's go, baby!"

Spearmon beat Wariner, whose specialty is the 400, and Jared Connaughton. Wariner ran a 20.53, bettering the season-opening time of 20.66 he ran last week at TCU.

Connaughton, a former UT Arlington runner who competed for Canada in the 2008 Games, ran a 20.54 to finish third.

"Coach told me I was ready, so anything he says I'm starting to believe," Spearmon said. "So, yes, I did believe I could run that fast today."

Spearmon, who finished third at the 2008 Olympics in the 200 but was later disqualified for stepping out of his lane, has been training with former TCU coach Monte Stratton at UTA since October.

His training partner is Doc Patton, a two-time Olympian who ran collegiately at TCU.

"We made some noise," Patton said to Spearmon before Stratton quickly reminded both that it's "early."

Patton's 10.04 in the 100 was the fastest time in the world this year and his fastest season-opening time ever, topping his season-opening 10.11 in 2007. He beat Carlin Isles (10.24) and Cordero Gray (10.25) in his heat, with TCU's Charles Silmon running the top time among collegians in 10.22.

"I know the sport of track and field," Patton, 34, said. "The quote is going to be, 'He's running fast too early.' Regardless of what everybody thinks. I know I'm ready to run. This is the way I train. I've always trained like this.

"I've gotten a little stronger. I've gotten a little smarter. I take breaks when I need to. That older age, you've got to be smarter at this age."

LaShauntea Moore ran a record 22.94 to win the women's 200, the fastest time in the world this year and a stadium mark, topping the 23.02 Beverly McDonald ran in 1994.

Wariner was supposed to run the 4x400, but like last week at TCU, one of his relay teammates was injured. He will run the 4x400 next week at the Texas Relays, and possibly the 4x100, before running his first open 400 of the season at Texas State on April 7.

"Coach [Clyde] Hart was a little disappointed we didn't get a relay in, but he just said we'll have to pick up training and start getting a little more strength work in," Wariner said. "That just means a lot of pain the next few weeks."

UTA's Jeff Rodriguez won the pole vault in a school-record 17-81/2. And teammate Clayton Vaughn ran a 10.37 in the 100, second-fastest among collegians, and anchored the Mavericks' 4x100 relay, beating TCU

Charean Williams


Twitter: @NFLCharean

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