Holliday Repeats iPole Vault Victory in Texas Relays
April 5, 2003
AUSTIN, Texas - The University of Oregon men's and women's track and field teams finished the Texas Relays in a flurry Saturday with one win and four more top-six finishes in the 76th edition of the Lone Star State classic, hosted by the University of Texas at Mike A. Myers Stadium.
On the women's side, redshirt senior Becky Holliday repeated her pole vault crown with a final clearaance of 13-5 1/4 and posted the Ducks' first win of the 2003 Texas Relays. The three-time All-American fought off strong, swirling winds, and defeated an all-star pole vault field that featured five All-Americans and five more NCAA veterans among its 14 entrants.
One of only two vaulters to pass the opening heights of 12-1 1/2 and 12-7 1/2, Holliday was the only vaulter to clear her opening height of 13-1 1/2 and easily cleared her first attempt. Afterwards she needed three attempts to clear 13-5 1/4, then passed at 13-9 1/4 and moved up to 14-1 1/4. After aborting her first two attempts at the last height, she pushed her body over the bar on the final try but pushed it off on her way down.
'The conditions made it more challenging, but I also didn't feel at top physical condition,' Holliday said, 'so considering the results I'm happy with it as an outdoor opener. I know I'm on schedule because I'm starting to get down the different techniques we've been working on since indoors. I used to rely too much on my speed, and now I'm trying to add better technique to it. I'd like to be a consistent 14-foot vaulter this year, and this is OK for a starting point. I know there's good things ahead for all of us (including teammates Niki McEwen and Kirsten Riley).'
For the second straight season, she posted her first legal outdoor mark of the campaign in the Austin-hosted meet after winning the 2002 edition with a clearance of 13-7 1/4. Holliday would have opened up in 2003 two weeks earlier in the Oregon Preview, but hadn't received the poles back from the cargo shippers after taking second in the NCAA Indoor Championships in mid-March (14-3 1/4).
'My first jump was probably my best,' Holliday said, 'and after that I felt a little tired, probably because we've been training hard. We're trying to peak in June and not April. During the competition, I skipped 13-9 1/4 because I knew I only had so many jumps in me today. When I went up to 14-1 1/4, I used a different pole, but didn't feel comfortable on my first two tries, so I went back down to a smaller one for my last one.'
Junior Kirsten Riley followed in a tie for eighth (12-1 1/2) with a second attempt-clearance at the event's opening height and her only clearance of the day. Senior and three-time All-American Niki McEwen passed at the opening two heights before missing her three attempts at 13-1 1/2.
With three Pac-10 schools on hand, the 'Conference of Champions' dominated the meet results with four top-10 finishers and three in the top six. After Holliday, Purdue's Simona Kovacic and Nebraska's Christina Lehman tied for second, with other Pac-10 finishers including WSU's Tamara Diles (fifth, 12-7 1/2) and Washington's Kate Soma (sixth-tie, 12-7 1/2).
On the javelin runway, All-America sophomore Elisa Crumley made her season debut and finished third (157-11) and only took four of her allotted six throws. The Hillsboro, Ore., native opened with preliminary throws of 152-11, 147-4 and 147-1, then passed on her fourth and fifth attempts, before upping her daily best to 157-11 on her final throw.
'I came in with no expectations because I've done so little in practice,' Crumley said. 'I only started two weeks ago with a three-step approach, then went up to five for the first time on Wednesday so I'm starting from ground zero. I was really nervous coming in and my warm-ups weren't very good. But I usually like these conditions - hot, humid and windy - so that helped settle me down.'
Crumley cut her normal approach in half Saturday in the prelim and utilized a five-step approach since her training had been limited due to shoulder surgery last fall.
'I was worried about my strength and endurance, so I skipped my first throws in the final, so I could save some strength and try to relax, and that helped a lot. It was also nice to have that breather and watch everybody else as I get back in the flow - there was so much talent here, it was neat to be around it all. My technique was OK for the limited approach - I tried to focus on having a quick block with quick hits.'
All-America sophomore Roslyn Lundeen returned for her second meet of the outdoor campaign and followed in sixth place (152-1). The Victoria, B.C. naive opened with marks of 147-4, 150-9 and 152-1, and followed with a trio of fouls in the finals.
'I had an off day,' Lundeen said. 'Today was the first time I tried to use a full approach and my technique couldn't handle the speed. I have a lot of work to do in the next weeks. I tried to hold my up tip up and long, but the javelin wasn't where it needed to be. Physically I didn't feel very good either, so I'll do what I can to be more ready next week.'
The university sections's top mark came from exhibition entrant Kim Kreiner of Nike who launched a throw of 197-6 on her second throw - the fourth-best in the world and second-best in U.S. history. Karen Wyzykowski of North Carolina was crowned the collegiate champion (169-9), ahead of Wichita State's Allison Berry (second, 158-3) and Crumley (third, 157-11).
In the shot put ring, senior Mary Etter enjoyed a season breakthrough of sorts in the shot put. Although she posted onl one legal mark among her six attempts, her second throw and season best of 49-2 1/4 earned her eighth place overall and her first Regional invite in the event this season.
The Everett, Wash., native Etter entered the meet with a season best of 44-6 3/4 after redshirting the indoor season. A two-time All-American in the discus, she upped her shot put personal best to 49-11 1/4 last year.
Overall in Sunday's competition, North Carolina's Laura Gerraughty won (57-2 1/4) by 1 ï¿½ feet over Nebraska's Becky Breisch (second, 55-7).
On the men's side, All-America junior Trevor Woods flew to success in the pole vault as well, with his first legal mark and Regional qualifier of the outdoor season (third, 17-8 1/2) - more than nine inches better than his indoor best of 2003 (16-10 3/4).
The Coos Bay, Ore., native opened with a pass at 16-4 3/4, the followed with a first-attempt clearance at 16-10 3/4, second-attempt clearance at 17-4 1/2, and a first-attempt clearance at 17-8 1/2.
In the 110 hurdles, freshman Eric Mitchum capitalized on an invite for the invitational section of the 110 hurdles and took fourth overall and second among collegians (13.98w, w:+2.4). Unattached entrant Bashin Ramzy won in 13.72 over Arkansas senior Eddie Jackson (13.85w) and unattached entrant Greg Hines (13.87w).
For Mitchum, it meant a new windy personal best by .09 seconds off his outdoor debut in the Oregon Preview (first, 14.07w, w:+3.0), and the first sub-14.00 clocking of his young collegiate career.
'I was more nervous going into the prelim Friday than today,' Mitchum said. 'Even though I hit a lot of hurdles, I still felt pretty smooth the whole way. I had a good start and kept my speed through the end, so I knew that a time in the 13.90s was likely. I've had a good indoor and outdoor season so far, and this gives me even more confidence heading into the middle stretch of the season.'
Freshman high jumper Jeff Lindsey returned to his home state and tied for 14th in the university section of the high jump (6-6 3/4). The Mansfield native cleared his first try at the opening height of 6-6 3/4, then missed his three attempts at 6-8 3/4.
Full meet results are available at the www.texassports.com web site
Looking ahead, the Duck men's and women's teams return home to Hayward Field to host the Pepsi Team Invitational against Colorado, Minnesota and Washington, Saturday, April 12. The first field event is slated for noon, running events begin at 2:40 pm, and the final event is at 4:45 p.m. The Minnesota men won the Big 10 outdoor team title last year, and in the distance races, all four teams had teams or individuals in last fall's NCAA Cross Country Championships, including Colorado's Jorge Torres who won the men's individual harrier crown last fall.
Mike A. Myers Stadium
University of Texas
Saturday, April 5, 2003
Pole Vault - University Section - 1, Becky Holliday, Oregon, 13-5 1/4. 2, Simona Kovacic, Purdue, 12-7 1/2. 3, Christina Lehman, Nebraska, 12-7 1/2. 8, Kirsten Riley, Oregon, 12-1 1/2. NH - Niki McEwen, Oregon.
Shot Put - University Section - 1, Laura Gerraughty, North Carolina, 57-2 1/4. 2, Becky Breisch, Nebraska, 55-7 1/2. 3, Leann Boerema, Nebraska, 52-10. 8, Mary Etter, Oregon, 49-2 1/4.
110 Hurdles - Invitational Section - 1, Bashir Ramzy, Unat., 13.72w. 2, Eddie Jackson, Arkansas, 13.85. 3, Greg Hines, Unat., 13.87w. 4, Eric Mitchum, Oregon, 13.98w. (w: +2.4).
High Jump - Collegiate Section - 1, Michael McKinney, Southern, 6-10 3/4. 2, Marlin Manley, UT Pan American, 6-10 3/4. 3, Ellison Collins, Texas A&M, 6-10 3/4. 14t, Jeff Lindsey, Oregon, 6-6 3/4.
Pole Vault - University Section - 1, Bobby Most, Texas Tech, 18-0 1/2. 2, Brad Walker, Washington, 18-0 1/2. Ex. - Brian Hunter, Unat., 18-0 1/2. 3, Trevor Woods, Oregon, 17-8 1/2. 4, Eric Eshbach, Nebraska, 17-8 1/2. 4, Trent Powell, BYU, 17-8 1/2.
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