Track & Field Ends Pac-10 Championships with Impressive Performances

May 18, 2003

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - The University of Arizona track and field teams completed competition at the Pac-10 Championships on Sunday, May 18 at USC's Cromwell Field at Katherine B. Loker Stadium. Both the men's and women's team finished eighth overall. The men tallied 46 points, while the women racked up 58 points. USC won the men's title, while UCLA took home the women's crown.

The highlight of the day for the Wildcats was Jeff Hunter's 400 meter hurdles race, where he set the school record in a time of 50.47 to finish fourth overall. Keith Varga held the previous record of 50.70, set in 2000.

The men's team was helped out by Rich Legarra and Ryan Moore in the hammer throw. Legarra finished fifth with a throw of 199 feet, 3 inches, while Moore was eighth with a toss of 182-10. Sean Shields was second in the shot put with a season's best mark of 188-10 (57.55m).

The women's 4x100 meter relay team placed third overall in 45.02 seconds. The team was made up of Sharifa Jones, Angel Perkins, Marquita Taylor and Seynabou Ndiaye. In the women's 4x400 meter relay, the Wildcats finished fourth. The squad was comprised of Jones, Chelsea Powell, Cocoa Sanford and Perkins.

In the men's relays, the 4x100 team was sixth overall, finishing in 41.18 seconds. Jeff Hunter led off, followed by Jevon Mason, Matt Lea and Adrain Thomas. The same four made up the 4x400 relay squad, which placed fourth in 3:09.04.

Beth Hoge ran an exciting 1,500 meter race, where she finished fifth in a personal best time of 4:21.10. Sharifa Jones was the third-place finisher in the 100 meter hurdles, running a personal best time of 13.36. Seynabou Ndiaye was also a third-place finisher in the 100 meters, running her personal best of 11.59 seconds.

Mason and Lea added to the men's point total with their sixth and eighth place finishes in the 400 meters. Mason clocked a time of 46.68, while Lea finished in 46.93 seconds.

In the 5,000 meters, Hoge placed fifth in a time of 16:56.29 to add to the women's team score. On the men's side, Robert Cheseret had the crowd on their feet in an exciting finish to the men's 5,000 meters. He finished second in 14:07.40, after being passed by Stanford's Louis Luchini in the home stretch. Cheseret led for almost the entire race.

Connie Jerz led the way in the women's pole vault. She finished fourth overall at a height of 13 feet, 3 � inches (4.05m). Amy Linnen continued her comeback, finishing tenth at 12-7 � (3.85m). Ilona Rutjes scored big for the UA women with a third-place finish in the discus. She threw a season's best mark of 178-6 (54.42m).

The Wildcats will play host to the Tucson Elite Classic on Saturday, May 24 at Roy P. Drachman Stadium. It will be the last chance for athletes to qualify for the NCAA Regional meets, which will be held May 30-31.

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