May 11, 2011
HONOLULU - Utah State women's track and field freshman Chari Hawkins won the heptathlon with 5,124 points on Wednesday, the second day of the 2011 Western Athletic Conference Outdoor Championships at the Clarence T.C. Ching Athletic Complex in Honolulu.
Senior Philip Noble took second in the men's decathlon with his personal-best point total of 6,960 ranking him at No. 7 all-time in USU history. The Aggie men and women took an early lead in the team scores with the men tallying 13 points and the woman gaining 10.
Hawkins is the first Utah State freshman woman to win an individual WAC title, along with being the fifth Aggie woman to win the conference heptathlon title and the first since 2002. Agneta Westen won the heptathlon when Utah State was in the Big West Conference in both 1992 and 1993 while Jamie Hall and Katie Farner each won the same event in 1996 and 2002, also in the Big West.
"The men did exactly what I thought they could do and they had some great marks," said Utah State veteran head coach Gregg Gensel. "Chari won the heptathlon and there is not anything more you can ask for, she did great. We need to work hard and get through tomorrow and make sure we get the athletes in to the finals. We are looking to get all the pieces of the puzzle to fall into place."
Joining Noble in the top six of the decathlon were juniors Jon Goble and John Johnson finishing fourth (6,538 points) and sixth (5,690 points) respectively. Both point totals were personal-best marks.
Hawkins and Noble become first-team all-WAC members for placing in the top three, while Goble and Johnson are named second-team all-WAC. Hawkins also garnered first-team all-WAC honors during the indoor season when she placed second in the pentathlon, as did Noble and Johnson when they finished second and third in the heptathlon.
Noble, Johnson and Goble each won one event in the decathlon on Wednesday with Noble taking the top spot in the 1500m, Johnson in the pole vault and Goble in the discus.
Hawkins managed to not win a single event in the heptathlon while still scoring enough points to win the title. Junior Jen Schiess was the only other USU woman to compete in the heptathlon as she finished in 11th-place with 4,246 pts., her personal-best.
Thursday's action kicks off with the women's hammer at 6 p.m. (MT) and ending with the men's 10,000m at 1:05 a.m. Friday morning. The final day of the championships begins Friday evening with the men's hammer at 5:30 p.m. and with the last event being the 4x400m relay at 11:25 p.m.
The Aggie men are the two-time defending WAC Outdoor Champions, while the USU women have placed fourth each of the last three years. The Utah State women look to avenge their one-point loss to Louisiana Tech earlier this year in the indoor season.
Live results can be found at www.utahstateaggies.com or on www.wacsports.com.
Fans can follow Utah State Athletics, including USU track and field, at http://twitter.com/USUAthletics.com or on Facebook at Utah State University Athletics.
UTAH STATE RESULTS WAC CHAMPIONSHIPS HONOLULU, HAWAI'I MAY 10, 2011
WOMEN TEAM SCORES (One Event Scored) 1. UTAH STATE - 10 2. Nevada - 9 3. Louisiana Tech - 8 4. Boise State - 6 5. Fresno State - 3 6. New Mexico State - 2 7. Hawai'I - 1
MEN TEAM SCORES (One Event Scored) 1. UTAH STATE - 13 2. Idaho - 10 3. Fresno State - 8
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