Feb. 25, 2011
NAMPA, Idaho - Utah State track and field junior Sonia Grabowska broke her previous Utah State record (4.20m) clearing 13-11.25 (4.25m) to win the Western Athletic Conference pole vault title at Jackson Indoor Track on Friday at the 2011 WAC Indoor Championships.
Grabowska surpassed the provisional qualifying mark for the third time this season making her eligible to receive an invitation to the NCAA Indoor Championships that will be held in College Station, Texas on March 11-12. This was Grabowska's first WAC indoor pole vault title.
"Sonia is a competitor," said USU veteran head coach Gregg Gensel. "When she does things well, she gets really excited. She is a great athlete and works really hard. I know she is really excited and so is our coaching staff."
After two days of competition, the Aggie women are in first place with 60 points with Nevada (50 pts.) and Boise State (49 pts.) in second and third, respectively. On the men's side, Boise State (54 pts.) has a four-point advantage over Utah State (50 pts.) with Idaho sitting in third-place with 36 points.
"We pride ourselves in our distance running, with our cross country championships and the distance medley and 5000-meter races," said Gensel. "We earned a lot of points today with the medley and 5K's that have put us in a great position."
The USU men's distance medley team won their fifth-straight WAC title with a time of 9:59.38, good enough for fourth all-time in the school record books. The men's team consists of seniors James Allred, Eric Larson, Jason Holt and freshman Devin Lang. Both Allred and Larson were on the 2010 WAC champion distance medley relay team. The Aggie women's distance medley team finished in a close second with a time of 11:50.29, breaking the school record. The women's team includes senior Alicia Wilkins, junior Jessie Chugg, sophomore Aubrie Haymore and freshman Hannah Williams.
Junior Ruth Hilton crossed the finish line in the 5000m with a time of 17:13.15 giving her second-place ahead of teammates Kim Quinn in fifth (17:33.47) and Alex Litzsinger in sixth (17:35.88). In the high jump, freshman Chari Hawkins finished tied for fourth with a jump of 5-05.75 (1.67m) with sophomore Bri Campbell and junior Madison Jensen ended up tied for sixth-place with a mark of 5-03.75 (1.62m). Hawkins also finished tied for sixth in the long jump (18-05.75 [5.63m]).
Junior Daniel Howell led the Utah State men in the 5000m with a second-place finish (14:46.37) with teammates Brian and Kyle McKenna placing third (14:46.56) and fifth (14:55.93) respectively. Junior Damian Szade secured a third-place finish in the long jump with mark of 23-00.00 (7.01m), and sophomore Spencer Hall finished fifth in the shot put with a throw of 50-02.50 (15.30m). Junior Philip Noble had his career-best outing in the heptathlon finishing with 5,204 points which was good enough for second place. His finish ranks third all-time in the USU Indoor Top 10. Junior John Johnson and sophomore Sam Hawkins also performed well in the same event finishing third (4,390 pts.) and fifth (3,911 pts.), respectively.
The Aggie men had seven athletes qualify for the finals during the preliminary round of their respective events. They include seniors Armahd Lewis (200m), Jason Holt (800m), James Allred (800m), Mercer Owen (800m), freshman Parker Bluth (200m), Tanner Hunt (400m), AJ Boully (400m) and Jake Peterson (800m).
Utah State women who advanced to the finals in their respective events were freshman Chari Hawkins (60m hurdles) and Kylie Hirschi (800m), junior Katelyn Heiner (400m) and seniors Heidi Peterson (60m hurdles and 400m) and Alexis Meyer (800m).
Live results for the 2011 WAC Indoor Championships are available through www.utahstateaggies.com as well as http://wac.org/itf/2011/index.htm.
UTAH STATE RESULTS FEB. 25, 2011 WAC CHAMPIONSHIPS NAMPA, IDAHO
Team Scores: 1. Utah State, 60 2. Nevada, 50 3. Boise State, 49 4. New Mexico State, 31.5 5. Hawai'i, 26.5 6. Fresno State, 20 7. Louisiana Tech, 19 8. Idaho, 16
60m Prelim - 13. Bailee Whitworth, 7.91
200m Prelim - 15. Bailee Whitworth, 25.19
Team Scores: 1. Boise State, 54 2. Utah State, 50 3. Idaho, 36 4. Louisiana Tech, 8
Shot Put - 5. Spencer Hall, 50-02.50 (15.30m)
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