Track and Field Opens Season at Lumberjack Invite

Jan. 18, 2006

TEMPE, Ariz. - The Arizona State University track and field team opens its 2006 schedule this season as the Sun Devil men and women head to Flagstaff, Ariz., and the Northern Arizona University campus for their first indoor meet, the Lumberjack Invitational. The event is slated to run all day on Saturday and will take place inside the Walkup Skydome.

Five collegiate teams and seven club teams comprise the entrants into the 2006 Lumberjack Invitational this weekend. Arizona State will face competition from the collegiate ranks from host Northern Arizona, Southern Utah, Paradise Valley CC and Grand Canyon.

With the season opening this weekend and the annual meeting with Arizona and Northern Arizona set for one week later, only a small contingent of student-athletes will be heading to Flagstaff this weekend for the Lumberjack Invitational. The Sun Devils will send two women to compete in the long jump while the remaining Sun Devils headed north will compete in the pole vault event.

TEAM RANKINGS released its first Top 25 poll of 2006 with the Sun Devil women entering the season ranked No. 6 in the nation according to the Jan. 16 list. The men are not currently ranked. The Team Power Rankings have not been released yet this season.

Along with the Top 25 team lists were the release of the 'Dandy Dozen' individual Top 12 rankings. On the women's side, Jacquelyn Johnson enters the season ranked second in the pentathlon, Sarah Stevens is third in the shot put, Amy Hastings is sixth in the 5,000m run, Jessica Pressley is seventh in the shot put and Rachel Ellison is 12th in the mile run. On the men's side, Domenik Peterson leads the way as he is fifth in the 200m dash while Ryan Zimmerman is ninth in the triple jump. Ryan Whiting and Joshua Kinnaman are ranked 11th in the shot put and heptathlon, respectively. Both the men and women have one relay team ranked with the women's distance medley relay sitting eighth and the men's 4x400m relay ranking 10th.

Four women and six men return to the track this season with All-America honors to their names, including 2004 NCAA champion Jacquelyn Johnson. For the women, Johnson, a two-time award winner, is joined by five-time All-American Amy Hastings and single-honorees Christina Hardeman and Jessica Pressley. On the men's side, Domenik Peterson leads the way with five awards won and is joined by two-time honoree Aaron Aguayo and single-honorees Brandon Glenn, Ryan Warrenburg and Ryan Zimmerman.

At the end of the 2005 track and field season, 10 women and 10 men earned Academic All-Pac-10 honors, including eight student-athletes (three women and five men) earning first team accolades. Following the 2005 cross country season, 17 total athletes (nine women and eight men) attained the same honor from the conference with three women and four men earning first team accolades. Kal Clark and Jennifer Kowacz were both selected to the ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District VIII First Team with Kowacz then earning ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America First Team.

Last year, four women's records and one men's mark was broken on the all-time Arizona State lists. For the women, Porchea Carroll clocked a 7.39 in the 60m dash to tie Dawnyel Linder's mark set in 1999. Amy Hastings had a hand in two records as she set the 5,000m run mark at 16:05.83 and then joined with Rachel Ellison, Cassandra Reed and Jessie McLaughlin to break the distance medley relay time with an 11.14.63. In the field, Angela Tavlarides became the first Sun Devil woman to clear 13 feet as she set the standard at 4.03m (13-2.50). The men saw Domenik Peterson clock a 20.43 to finish fourth at the NCAA Championships, bettering his own mark of 20.57 set one year prior to that.

Both the men and women recorded four school records during the outdoor season one year ago, including two relay marks. On the women's side, Amy Hastings took over the top spot in the 10,000m run with her time of 33:19.32 while Angela Tavlarides cleared 4.10m (13-5.25) to become the first Sun Devil to clear 13 feet outdoors. Jessica Pressley, in her first outdoor season with the team, set the standard in the shot put at 17.05m (55-11.25), breaking a 22-year old record before becoming the first ASU woman to break the 200-foot barrier in the hammer with her record toss of 63.51m (208-4). The men saw Aaron Aguayo set the mark in the 3,000m steeplechase (8:38.16) and the 5,000m run (13:49.11), beating out Todd Lewis in both categories 13 and 15 years later, respectively. In the relays, the team of Steven Koehnemann, Domenik Peterson, Seth Amoo and Kelvin Love, Jr., ran a 38.71 4x100m relay to break the 26-year old record of 38.78 set in 1979 by Ron Brown, LaMonte King, Greg Moore and Dwayne Evans. Amoo and Peterson joined Rich Allen and Lewis Banda in setting the 4x400m relay mark as the four men combined to finish second in the nation with a blistering time of 3:00.57.

The Sun Devils will welcome 37 new members to its team this season as 20 women and 17 men join the program in time for the 2006 season. In all, 26 freshmen, three sophomores, seven juniors and one senior comprise the new additions to the squad this year.

On a roster of 97 student-athletes (45 women and 52 men), 18 different states are represented, stretching as far west as California, as far north as Alaska, as far south as Texas and as far east as Maryland. In all, 47 student-athletes hail from Arizona with California (19), Texas (five) and Colorado (three) rounding out the Top 4. States with two representatives include Indiana, Washington, Kansas, Pennsylvania, Oregon, Michigan, Missouri and Idaho while single representation comes from Illinois, Ohio, Alaska, Maryland, Kentucky and Iowa. The final member of the roster is the lone foreign student-athlete, hailing from Serbia.

The Arizona State harriers turned in another fine season of competition as both the men and women advanced to the NCAA Championships in Terre Haute, Ind. The women, led by Amy Hastings and her third cross country All-America honor in a row, finished fourth overall, earning the first trophy finish (Top 4) at a national meet for the program. This all came after the women finished as runners-up to Stanford, the 2005 national champion, in both the Pac-10 and NCAA West Region meets. The men, hit hard by injuries, continued to fight to finish 17th at the national meet following a third-place finish in the regional race and fifth-place at the conference meet. Casey Burchill and Ryan Warrenburg led the men all season and will look to help carry the load on the track as well.

The men opened the championship season by placing 13th at the NCAA Indoor Championships while the women tied for 43rd overall. Outdoors, the men placed third at the Pac-10 Championships, fourth in NCAA West Region and 17th in the NCAA Outdoor Championships. The women also finished third at the conference level before a fourth-place finish at the regional meet. They did not score at the outdoor national meet and did not place in the final standings.

Four men and two women return to the track this season after winning Pac-10 titles one year ago while one other woman returns after a redshirt season. For the men, two-time 3,000m steeplechase champion Aaron Aguayo is back and will look for his third title in a row while Steven Koehnemann (4x100m), Kelvin Love Jr. (4x100m) and Domenik Peterson (4x100m and 4x400m) round out the returning men. On the women's side, Christina Hardeman is the lone returning member of the championship 4x100m relay of one year ago while Anna Masinelli is back following her victory in the steeplechase last year. Two years ago, Jacquelyn Johnson won gold twice as she was crowned champion in the heptathlon and the high jump during the 2004 season.

Joe Selleh Track at Sun Angel Stadium has served as the home of Arizona State track and field since 1976 and has seen its share of successful athletes participate in events on its surfaces. Olympic champions, such as Dwight Phillips (2004 long jump) and Nick Hysong (2000 pole vault), and both team and individual national champions have called the 5,000-plus seat venue home. Most recently, Jacquelyn Johnson was the newest addition to the list as she won the 2004 NCAA Heptathlon title. Sun Angel Stadium also plays host to at least four ASU events each season, culminating with the prestigious Sun Angel Classic presented by Coca-Cola. Entering its 27th year, the Classic features come of the top collegiate programs in the nation each year.

Arizona State will play host to four home meets again this season as Joe Selleh Track at Sun Angel Stadium will be home to the Bill Sawyer Invitational on Feb. 25, the Baldy Castillo Invitational on March 17 and 18 and the ASU Invitational on March 25. The final meet of the year at home will be the 27th Sun Angel Classic presented by Coca-Cola on April 15. For more information on the meets, including event schedules, visit the track and field page on, the official web site of Sun Devil Athletics.

Two meets await the Sun Devils next weekend with several athletes heading to Albuquerque, N.M., while the remainder of the team will return to Flagstaff for the annual Double Dual. On Jan. 27, the Sun Devils will meet intrastate rivals Arizona and Northern Arizona for the annual bragging rights meet, this year, though, adding California and UCLA (men only) to the mix. On Jan. 26 and Jan. 27, ASU's multi-event athletes will compete in the Zia Classic on the New Mexico campus.

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