Michael Robertson, Ryan Hall Capture NCAA Titles
June 11, 2005
Sacramento, Ca - It had been exactly 40 years since a Stanford athlete had won the NCAA title in the discus. The long streak ended on a hot, sunny Saturday afternoon in Sacramento at the 2005 NCAA Track & Field Championships when junior transfer Michael Robertson captured the national crown with a school record effort of 202-5 (61.70).
Robertson enrolled and immediately became eligible at Stanford this year after he left Southern Methodist University (SMU) after the Mustangs dropped their men's track & field program. Although he was ranked second in the nation behind North Carolina's Vikas Gowda entering the NCAA Championship, Robertson defied the odds and took the lead on his fifth throw of the day. Gowda, the 2004 Olympian from India, had taken the lead in the competition on his second throw at 197-1 (60.08m). However, Gowda couldn't pass Robertson on his final two throws of the day. In fact, Gowda fouled on his final effort of the day, and Robertson walked away with the 2005 NCAA title.
'It was hard on everybody (when SMU dropped track & field),' said Robertson. 'But I was excited to go to Stanford. It was a new lift.'
Robertson entered the competition with a school record best of 202-5 (61.70m), nearly ten feet behind Gowda, the nation's leader at 212-3 (64.69m).
'It was very satisfying, especially the way it happened,' said Robertson. 'I felt good throughout the competition, and I had a lot left on my fifth throw,' said Robertson. 'I was lucky to catch a good throw (the fifth effort). I tried to put it out there in the sixth round, and I got a good throw, but it wasn't farther. I just got lucky that Vikas didn't put it together in his final throw. He's had a great season.'
Robertson becomes Stanford's first NCAA discus champion since 1965 when Bob Stoecker captured the national title. Robertson is one of eight Stanford athletes to have now captured the NCAA title in the discus. The list includes Gordon Dunn (1927), Clifford Hoffman (1921), Eric Krenz (1928), Henri Laborde (1933), Dave Weill (1962, 1963) and Peter Zagar (1937, 1939, 1940).
As the four-day meet drew to a close, Ryan Hall and Ian Dobson dueled from start to finish in the finals of the 5,000 meters. Throughout much of the race, both runners took turns grabbing the lead. With three laps to go, Hall and Dobson stretched the lead over the 14 other runners. Then with one lap remaining, Dobson and Hall began the final assault on the finish line. And with 50 meters remaining, Hall overtook Dobson to win in a school record time of 13:22.32. Dobson was clocked in a career-best 13:22.54.
'That was Ian and I working together at the end,' said Hall. 'We just really respect each other running hard all the time. We train really well together. So I don't see it as 'I won and he got second.' I see both of us as winning. That was our goal all season.'
The 28 points generated by Robertson in the discus, and Hall and Dobson in the 5,000 meters gave Stanford a seventh place finish in the final team standings. Arkansas won its 11th NCAA title since 1992 with 60 points.
The Stanford women finished fifth with 29 points. Texas won the NCAA title with 55 points followed by UCLA (48), South Carolina (48) and Tennessee (40).
In the women's 5,000 meters, Megan Metcalfe of West Virginia caught Stanford's Sara Bei in the final 100 meters to win in a time of 16:31.88. Bei was timed in 16:32.42. Teresa McWalters, a redshirt freshman, held the lead through much of the race, and ended up in third place (16:38.44).
'My strength is my final kick, but that is Megan's strength as well,' said Bei. 'I felt good in the stretch, but Megan just had a little more at the end.'
Erica McLain earned her second All-American honor in her freshman season with a third place finish in the triple jump (44-8 1/4, 13.62m).
Arianna Lambie earned her second All-American honor at Stanford with a third place finish in the 1,500 meters. Lambie toured the course in a season-best time of 4:13.64 which just short of her career-best of 4:13.14 set last year.
For complete results, go to www.ncaasports.com.
NCAA Notes: The fifth place finish by the Cardinal women, and seventh place by the Stanford men is the fifth time in school history that both teams have finished in the Top 10 in the same year at the NCAA Track & Field Championships ... The Stanford women have finished in the Top 10 the last five years.
Cardinal Catalogue: Thirty-eight Stanford athletes have been named to the 2005 Pacific-10 All-Academic team ... To be eligible for selection to the academic team, student-athletes must have a minium 3.0 overall grade point average and be either a starter or significant contributor ... The list includes Julie Allen, Neftalem Araia, Keith Avila, Jakki Bailey, Sara Bei, Undine Becker, Russell Brown, Joaquin Chapa, Alicia Craig, Janice Davis, Ian Dobson, Katy Elsbury, Chris Emme, Evan Fox, Ashley Freeman, Lindsay Gannaway, Michael Garcia, Curtis Goehring, Jeane Goff, Brett Gotcher, Ahimsa Hodari, Sarah Hopping, Lauren Jespersen, Nashonme Johnson, Bryan Kelley, Arianna Lambie, Danielle Maier, Teresa McWalters, Christine Moschella, Justin Romaniuk, Donald Sage, Nick Sebes, Celia Smalls, Forrest Tahdooahnippah, Amanda Trotter, Katy Trotter, David Vidal, and Solomon Welch.
Fourth Day Results (NCAA Division I Men's & Women's Track & Field Championships)
Hornet Stadium, Sacramento State University
Men's Final Team Results (71 teams scored)
1. Arkansas 60; 2. Florida 49; 3. LSU 36; 4. BYU 34; 4. Florida State 34; 6. USC 33; 7. Stanford 28; 8. Texas 25; 9. Oregon 23; 9. Aubutn 23; 9. Arizona 23
Men's Individual Results (Stanford)
1,500 Meters - 1. Leonel Manzano (Texas) 3:37.13; 9. Russell Brown (Stanford) 3:41.72
5,000 Meters - 1. Ryan Hall (Stanford) 13:22.32; 2. Ian Dobson (Stanford) 13:22.54; 13. Chris Emme (Stanford) 14:29.30
Discus - 1. Michael Robertson (Stanford) 202-5 (61.70m)
Women's Final Team Results (70 teams scored)
1. Texas 55; 2. UCLA 48; 2. South Carolina 48; 4. Tennessee 40; 5. Sstanford 29; 6. Georgia 28; 7. USC 25; 8. Nebraska 24; 9. Miami 23; 10. BYU 22
1,500 Meters - 1. Anne Shadle (Nebraska) 4:11.37; 3. Ariana Lambie (Stanford) 4:13.64
5,000 Meters - 1. Megan Metcalfe (West Virginia) 16:31.88; 2. Sara Bei (Stanford) 16:32.42; 3. Teresa McWalters (Stanford) 16:38.44
1,600 Meter Relay - 1. Texas 3:27.13; 6. Stanford (Christine Moschella, Janice Davis, Ashley Freeman, Nashonme Johnson) 3:29.39