Pac-10 Championships Await ASU Track & Field
May 10, 2005
TEMPE, Ariz. - The Arizona State University track and field teams will travel to Los Angeles, Calif., this weekend as the Sun Devils are set to compete in the 2005 Pac-10 Track and Field Championships slated for Saturday and Sunday at Drake Stadium on the UCLA campus.
RANKING THE FIELD
The Trackwire Top 25 was released Monday and both Sun Devil squads are ranked among the Top 15 in their respective polls. On the women's side, ASU is tied for No. 12 while UCLA leads the conference at No. 2. Other women's teams ranked include Stanford (tied No. 5), USC (No. 8) and Washington State (tied No. 10).
On the men's side of things, the Sun Devils are No. 9 this week while Stanford leads the way at No. 4. Also ranked are Arizona (No. 5), USC (tied No. 6), Oregon (No. 11) and UCLA (tied No. 17).
TEMPE - A GOOD SOURCE OF POWER
In the Team Power rankings (as of Monday), both the ASU women and men's teams are ranked second in the nation based upon a computer formula. UCLA leads the women's rankings while Texas is less than one point ahead of the Sun Devil men this week.
REVIEW: 2004 PAC-10 CHAMPIONSHIPS
The 2004 championships were held in Tucson with the Sun Devil men placing third overall with 120 points and the women placing fourth with 97 points. For the women, Jacquelyn Johnson won the heptathlon and high jump while Amy Hastings captured the 3,000m steeplechase. The men saw Lewis Banda repeat as 400m champion while the 4x100m and 4x400m relays also captured gold, as did Aaron Aguayo in the steeple event.
HISTORY: PAC-10 CHAMPIONSHIPS
The 2005 meet will mark the 75th year the men's teams have come together to compete, dating back to the first event, held May 27-28 in Seattle, Wash., where USC won the five team event. The women will meet for the 19th time, dating back to the first meet in 1987 as UCLA won the event in Corvallis, Ore., May 18-19.
Historically, the meet will mark the fifth time UCLA has played host to the men's meet and the third for the women. The City of Angeles has played host to the men's meet nine previous times and the women's edition on three previous occasions.
The Pac-10 Championships technically got underway over the weekend with the multi-event championships being contested in Los Angeles. Ryan Ehler scored one point for the Sun Devils as he placed eighth in the decathlon while Alana Waterford finished 11th in the heptathlon. Overall, Oregon leads the men's team race with 13 points while Washington State holds a 14 point lead on the women's side after scoring 20 points. The Sun Devil men are seventh with one point while the ASU women do not have a team score yet.
COMPETING AT UCLA
The Sun Devils have competed in two conference meets at UCLA over the years. The last time in Los Angeles (1996), the women tallied 51 points to finish eighth while the men placed ninth with 20 points. Prior to that, the women finished third with 84 points at the 1988 event while the men took eighth with 45 points.
COMPETING AT UCLA - PART II
The Sun Devils currently have 15 student-athletes that came to Tempe from the Golden State with four of those athletes hailing from within 60 miles of Los Angeles. Marquis Profit is from Pasadena (22 miles away), Cara Walker is from Huntington Beach (46 miles), Porchea Carroll is from Oxnard (54 miles) and Seth Amoo is from Palmdale (58 miles).
DOING IT DIFFERENT THIS SEASON
Prior to the start of the season, the Pac-10 Conference coaches voted on how student-athletes would qualify for the conference championship meet at the end of each season. Following the vote, it was decided that no standards will be created for an athlete to try and surpass, rather, the head coach of each team selects up to 24 men and up to 24 women to compete at the Pac-10 meet. Athletes can be entered in as many events as the coach sees fit, but no more than eight per school can enter into one event.
WHAT IS AT STAKE
Individual, relay and team championship titles will be on the line this weekend at UCLA as teams will look to also improve upon their top marks as the NCAA West Region Championships await each of the teams just two weeks down the road.
REPEAT OF HISTORY?
In 1981, the Sun Devil men won the Pac-10 team title with 133 points while Oregon took second (114) and UCLA (108.5) in third. The year before that, UCLA won the team title with 163 points while Oregon was second with 116. And what about the 2004 meet? You guessed it. UCLA won the team title with 151 points while Oregon finished second with 131 points.
Last year, ASU student-athletes combined to win seven Pac-10 titles, two of which came in the relay events. On the men's side, Lewis Banda is back to try and defend his back-to-back 400m crowns while Aaron Aguayo will look to win his second 3,000m steeplechase crown in a row. The men's 4x100m relay will go in search of two in a row in the event while the men's 4x400m relay will look for a record fifth straight. On the women's side, Amy Hastings returns as the defending 3,000m steeplechase champion. Jacquelyn Johnson, the 2004 heptathlon and high jump champion, will not compete this season as she is redshirting the 2005 slate after playing on the ASU women's basketball team earlier in the year.
BANDA LOOKING FOR HISTORY
Lewis Banda will take to the track this weekend in search of this third 400m dash title in a row. If he is successful, he will become just the third sprinter in conference history to secure the 400m dash crown three times in a row. The first to do so was Gabriel Tiacoh of Washington State (1984, 1985, 1986) before Jerome Davis of USC made history of his own by winning four in a row (1996, 1997, 1998, 1999).
THE DRIVE FOR FIVE
Banda is not the only Sun Devil chasing history this weekend. The men's 4x400m relay will go in search of their fifth title in a row and record the longest winning streak in a 4x100m or 4x400m relay. UCLA holds the longest overall streak as its men won the mile relay seven years in a row (1968-1974). No other men's relay has won more than three in a row. The women from USC won the 4x100m relay four times in a row to currently tie them with ASU's men.
ANOTHER DOMINANT EVENT
The ASU men have always fared well in the sprints. The Sun Devil women, though, have done something the no other school has done: win the 3,000m steeplechase. In 2001, the Pac-10 ran the race for the first time for the women and Kelly MacDonald won it for ASU. The next two years, Lisa Aguilera secured the crown before Amy Hastings made it four years in a row last season.
ASU had several of its track and field members honored as Pac-10 Athletes of the Week. Trevell Quinley started the trend as he earned the honor (April 11) after winning the Texas Relays with a national-leading and Top 5 in the world long jump of 8.17m. Aaron Aguayo was next (April 23) following a 13:49.11 in the 5,000m run, breaking a 15 year old school record. Last week, Jessica Pressley reset the school record in the hammer at 63.51m to earn the women's field honor while the men's 4x100m relay of Steven Koehnemann, Domenik Peterson, Seth Amoo and Kelvin Love earned the track honor after breaking a 26 year old school record with the fifth-fastest time in the world at the time, 38.71.
TAKE ME TO YOUR LEADERS
Heading into the Pac-10 Championships this weekend, the Sun Devils lead four men's events and one women's event. For the men, the 4x100m and 4x400m relay teams are tops in the conference while Domenik Peterson (400m) and Trevell Quinley (long jump) lead their individual events. Amy Hastings is the lone woman leader as she tops the 10,000m list.
GET THE POINTS?
At the Pac-10s, the Top 8 placers in each event score for their team. Heading into the meet, 21 men's marks and 22 women's marks are among the Top 8 on the Pac-10 lists. Additionally, 15 of the 21 men's marks rank among the Top 5 while 16 of the women's 22 marks fall among the Top 5.
WHERE IN THE WORLD
In the latest world lists, a trio of Sun Devil entrants remain among the Top 20. The men's 4x100m relay of Steven Koehnemann, Domenik Peterson, Seth Amoo and Kelvin Love leads the way as the fifth-fastest on the planet while one of the individual members of the relay, Peterson, is ranked eighth in the world in the 400m dash. The final entrant is Trevell Quinley, who ranks No. 8 in the long jump.
So far this outdoor season, 69 marks have been recorded by Sun Devil student-athletes that qualify them either for the regional or national meets. The men account for 37 of the marks with one earning a national berth while the women have collected the other 32 regional marks with two going for entry into the national meet.
MORE RECORDS THAN THE BEETLES
During the 2005 outdoor season, school records in five events were established with two of those events seeing the record rewritten on two other occasions. On the track, Amy Hastings set the standard in the women's 10,000m run (33:19.32) while Aaron Aguayo rewrote the mark for the 5,000m run (13:49.11) and the 4x100m relay of Steven Koehnemann, Domenik Peterson, Seth Amoo and Kelvin Love ran 38.71. In the field events, Angela Tavlarides broke her own pole vault mark on three occasions with her latest clearance of 4.10m being the best yet. Likewise, Jessica Pressley set the mark in the hammer a trio of times with a best of 63.51m.
Jessica Pressley has been very dominant in her first collegiate outdoor season with the Sun Devils in 2005. So far this season, Pressley not only threw her way onto the Top 10 lists at ASU, she has set one record and put all three of her marks among the Top 6 all-time. In the hammer, her mark of 63.51m (208-04) not only is a school record, but also marked the first time that an ASU woman has thrown past the 60m mark and broken 200 feet. Her marks in the other two events are 16.68m (54-08.75) in the shot put and 55.07m (180-08) in the discus.
THE J'S HAVE IT!
The women's throws have been paced by a trio of athletes with names starting with the letter J: Jessica, Julia and Jennifer. Jessica Pressley has set the school record in the hammer and ranks highly in the shot put and discus events. Julia Pedersen also ranks among the best Sun Devils of all-time in the shot put and the discus while Jennifer Kowacz has made her mark in the hammer and shot put. All three are favored to place highly at the Pac-10 Championships.
KEEPING UP WITH JONES
Speaking of success in the field events, Travis Jones also is having a stellar start to his outdoor season as he has punched his ticket to Eugene, Ore., in the hammer, shot put and discus. At the Double Dual, he won the hammer with a personal best mark of 58.90m (193-03) to move into the No. 4 spot on the all-time ASU lists.
KING OF THE (SAND) CASTLE
At the 2005 Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays (April 7-9), Trevell Quinley won the men's long jump in his first outdoor competition in the event since finishing as the national runner-up indoors in March. Not only did he win, he won big as he recorded a mark of 8.17m (26-09.75), the best mark not only in the collegiate ranks so far in 2005, but also the top mark among all Americans this year. His leap also ranks him second all-time on the ASU lists behind 2004 Olympic Gold Medalist Dwight Phillips, who set the bar at 8.21m.
Domenik Peterson has put together yet another solid season on the outdoor track following two All-America honors during the indoor season. The Pac-10 leader in the 400m dash, Peterson also ranks second in the 200m dash and is a member of the school record 4x100m and 4x400m relay teams. His time in the 400m (45.15) also ranks him No. 8 on the all-time ASU lists.
Arizona State's sprinting corps has been its strength over the years and 2005 is not different. This year, nine marks for the men and six for the women are among the Top 5 on the conference lists, including all four relays. For the men, ASU has two men in the Top 5 in both the 100m and 400m events with three in the Top 5 of the 200m dash. The women have two names on the 200m list and one each on the 100m and 400m dash lists.
PORCHEA FAST OFF THE LINE
In her senior season with the Sun Devils, Porchea Carroll has certainly done her best to go out with a bang. Heading into the conference meet, Carroll ranks second in the 100m and 200m dashes while sitting fourth in the long jump. She also is the anchor of the second-ranked 4x100 relay and is the lead leg of the third-fastest 4x400m relay.
GOING THE DISTANCE
The Sun Devil distance runners also have been faring well in 2005. For the women, Amy Hastings leads the conference in the 10,000m run while Victoria Jackson sits third. Hastings also is third in the 5,000m run while Anna Masinelli occupies the same rank in the 3,000m steeplechase. On the men's side, Ryan Warrenburg ranks third in the steeple event with defending champion Aaron Aguayo ranking fourth. Casey Burchill rounds out the high ranking distance runners as he ranks fourth in the 10,000m run.
HELLO, MY NAME IS ...
Several Sun Devils have made immediate impacts in their first campaigns at ASU this year. Victoria Jackson and Rachel Ellison, who transferred in from North Carolina and Mississippi, respectively, have qualified in a pair of events following successful seasons with the cross country team. On the rookie front, Kelvin Love has bolstered the sprint corps as he has anchored the school record 4x100m relay and regionally qualified for two other events. In the field, Tomas Navarro has earned regional berths in the shot put, hammer and discus while football standout Rudy Burgess turned in solid marks in his first meet in two years, just missing qualifying standards in both the long jump and triple jump events at the Double Dual.
RUNNING RELAY FAST
Last year, the men's 4x400m relay team of Seth Amoo, Domenik Peterson, Jason Barton and Steve Fitch clocked a school and collegiate indoor record of 3:03.43 at the Iowa State Last Chance Meet to solidify the relay as one of the best of all-time. With their performance at the Double Dual, the men's 4x100m relay of Steven Koehnemann, Peterson, Amoo and Kelvin Love added their group to the list of top relays. The quartet set the school record and ran the fifth-fastest loop in the world at 38.71. The first three legs of the relay, along with Lewis Banda, finished second at the NCAA meet in 2004.
CLIMBING NEW HEIGHTS
Two years ago, the school record in the women's pole vault was 3.51m (11-06.00) and was held by Olivia Mazzaglia, the only Sun Devil woman at the time that had cleared higher than nine feet in competition. Last year, Angela Tavlarides shattered that record as she cleared 3.80m (12-05.50). This year, Tavlarides was up (no pun intended) for higher marks as she set the school record three times, including clearances of 3.90m (12-09.50), 4.00m (13-01.50) and most recently, 4.10m (13-05.25). She is not alone, though, as Cara Walker has climbed to 3.80m as well while redshirting vaulter April Kubishta has cleared 4.00m as an unattached entry.
WATCH OUT BEHIND YOU!
Many Sun Devils have done very well this season, but there are several members of the team that are redshirting this season and should add to the depth of the team in 2006. Along with talented pole vaulter April Kubishta, another field event female to look out for is Sarah Stevens, the No. 1 ranked high schooler in 2004. So far this season, Stevens has equalled or bettered some of the team-leading throws. Several talented distance runners also are awaiting their turns to compete.
THIS YEAR'S ALL-AMERICANS
On March 11-12, the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships were held in Fayetteville, Ark., with 12 members of the ASU program participating in the national event. When the two-day national meet concluded, four Sun Devils emerged as All-Americans, including Trevell Quinley in the long jump (2nd), Domenik Peterson in the 200m dash (4th) and Brandon Glenn in the pole vault (7th) for the men and Amy Hastings in the 5,000m run (5th) for the women. Four months prior to that Hastings and Aaron Aguayo earned the national honor in cross country for their performances at the national meet.
Including the 2004 cross country season, the Sun Devil track and field program will see 11 of its student-athletes return to the track this season following a 2004 season in which they collectively earned 13 All-America honors.
Outdoors, Seth Amoo, Lewis Banda, Jason Barton, Domenik Peterson and Steven Koehnemann each return following a stellar spring that saw awards earned in both relays, as well as individual awards from Banda and Barton, both in the 400m. The women's 4x400m relay returns, minus one runner. Christina Hardeman, Cassandra Reed and Kandace Tucker were members of the relay while the third leg, Marcia Smith, graduated. Jaquelyn Johnson also returns after garnering the national honor in the heptathlon.
A trio of cross country runners with All-America honors return to the track this year, including two-time award honoree Amy Hastings. She is joined by Desiree Davila and Aaron Aguayo.
LONG JUMP SUCCESS
Arizona State long jumping has seen success in the past year with two solid finishes in competitive meets. Most recently, Trevell Quinley finished second at the NCAA Indoor Championships with a leap of 7.92m (26-00.00) and earned the third All-America honor of his career. More recently, he recorded the longest leap in the collegiate and American ranks in 2005 (8.17m) outdoors at the Texas Relays (April 8). Seven months prior to Quinley's indoor meet performance, former Sun Devil jumper Dwight Phillips captured gold at the Athens Olympics with a mark of 8.59m (28-02.25). Both men are one six ASU jumpers to jump over 26 feet.
IT'S BEEN A LITTLE WHILE SINCE ...
Brandon Glenn finished seventh in the indoor pole vault competition at the NCAA meet (March 11) to capture his first All-America honor. Glenn's accolade also was the first since 1994 when Nick Hysong captured the national honor. That same year, Glenn was nine years old.
A TRIPLE CROWN ... OF SORTS
Amy Hastings is two-thirds of the way toward history following her All-American performance at the NCAA Indoor Championships (March 11) where she placed seventh in the 5,000m run. Prior to the track season, she garnered the accolade in cross country. If she attains All-America honors during this outdoor season, she would do what only one other Sun Devil, male or female, has ever done: earn All-America honors in cross country, indoor and outdoor track in one season.
Lisa Aguilera is the only runner (so far) in school history to pull off the `triple crown' as she earned the national honor in 2000. She finished fifth at the NCAA cross country meet before placing seventh in the indoor mile and 8th in the outdoor 1,500m.
Last season, Seth Amoo helped the men's 4x400m relay set the NCAA indoor collegiate national record as he and his teammates clocked a 3:03.43 at the Iowa State Last Chance Meet. On Feb. 11, Amoo, the former school record holder in the 200m dash, set a national record on his own by finishing second in the 200m at the Holiday Inn Team Invitational in 20.95. The time made him the first representative of Ghana to run under 21 seconds, giving the senior the national record.
AND THE AWARD GOES TO ...
On Jan. 29, junior All-American and 2004 Olympian Lewis Banda returned to his native Zimbabwe where he was honored as the nation's Sportsman of the Year. Banda finished ninth at the Summer Olympiad after helping the Sun Devil men to a tie for 10th at the NCAA meet and anchoring the 2004 NCAA runner-up 4x100m relay team.
ALL RECORDS GO THROUGH JB
Looking over the men's record book for the indoor season, several impressive things standout. One of those is the men's 4x400m relay of Jason Barton, Steve Fitch, Seth Amoo and Domenik Peterson, who stand No. 1 on the lists with a collegiate record 3:03.43. Looking at all five of the top times for the relay event, one name keeps appearing: Jason Barton. In his four years in Tempe, Barton has helped his teammates record the fastest times around while securing All-America honors and Pac-10 titles.
The indoor men's 200m dash record section looks almost like a shortened version of the team roster as all five ranks are currently occupied by student-athletes on the 2005 team roster. Domenik Peterson leads the group at 20.43 set this season while placing fourth at the NCAA meet. Seth Amoo (20.95) and Lewis Banda (21.19) are second and fourth, respectively. The marks by Amoo and Banda are the oldest on the current list as both were achieved in the 2003 season. The remaining two marks were both attained in Flagstaff two weeks ago with Kelvin Love (21.15) and Steven Koehnemann (21.24) sitting third and fifth, respectively.
JOHNSON TAKES INDIVIDUAL TITLE
No Sun Devil had brought home a nation title since 1996. No woman had done so since 1992. That all changed when true freshman Jacquelyn Johnson went to Austin, Texas, and won the NCAA heptathlon crown. Johnson showed why she was touted as one of the premier athletes in the nation as she finished first at the outdoor national meet in the heptathlon, second in the national indoor pentathlon and added conference championships in both the heptathlon and the high jump. Johnson did not compete during the indoor season this year as she was playing for Charlie Turner Thorne and the Sun Devil women's basketball team. ASU advanced to the Sweet 16 of the tournament.
Amy Hastings accomplished a feat that no other Sun Devil cross country student-athlete, male or female, had in school history: win a conference title. Hastings led the women to a runner-up team finish as she won the Pac-10 championship crown, and earning the first conference gold of any kind for the program as neither the men nor women have won a team title either.
MAROON AND GOLD (MEDAL)
Arizona State was represented by one current and two former student-athletes at the Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece. Lewis Banda, who is the lone current runner, competed for Zimbabwe in the 400m dash and finished in ninth place, one spot shy of making the finals on the largest stage of athletics.
Although Banda fared well, one former athlete stole the spotlight. Dwight Phillips, the world leader in the long jump for the entire year, did not disappoint as he won the gold medal on his first jump of the competition. His win was the 10th gold medal won by a Sun Devil track and field athlete and also marked the third Summer Olympiad in a row that a former ASU standout returned home with gold after Nick Hysong won the pole vault in 2000 and Maicel Malone helped the 4x400m relay win in Atlanta in 1996.
The final 2004 Olympian with ASU ties was Michael Campbell. Representing Jamaica, Campbell ran in the 4x400m relay, but his team was disqualified in the first round of competition.
NEXT TIME OUT
The Tucson Elite Classic in Tucson is next on the slate for several members of the Sun Devil squad. The meet will be contested May 21 and will serve as a final tune-up meet before the team heads to the NCAA West Region Championships in Eugene, Ore., May 27-28. From there, the Top 5 placers individually and Top 3 relays will advance to the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Sacramento, Calif., June 8-10, on the campus of Sacramento State, the home of the 2003 meet.