Sun Devil Track & Field Heads to Triton Invitational

April 18, 2007

Complete Notes (pdf)

TEMPE, Ariz. - Following another strong set of performances over the weekend, the Arizona State University track and field team will send a group of athletes to the Triton Invitational, hosted by UC San Diego, Friday and Saturday in La Jolla, Calif.

The national rankings were released once again April 16 with the Sun Devil women remaining on top of both the Trackwire Top 25 and the USTFCCCA Top 25 while the men made a strong move toward the top with their performances over the weekend. The men moved up three spots on the Trackwire list to No. 4 while making a 14-position leap to No. 5 on the USTFCCCA's list.

With the release of the Trackwire rankings, the Sun Devil women will look to go wire-to-wire as the top ranked team in the nation after doing so during the indoor season.

Each week (starting April 9), the Pac-10 Conference will honor four athletes of the week, including one male and one female in both track and field. This week (April 9-15), three of those awards went to Sun Devils, including Domenik Peterson, the male Track Athlete of the Week, Latosha Wallace, the female Track Athlete of the Week, and Sarah Stevens, the female Field Athlete of the Week. The honors are the first in the careers of both Wallace and Stevens and the third for Peterson.

At the 28th Sun Angel Track Classic presented by Coca-Cola last weekend, Domenik Peterson turned in a solid display of speed to garner Pac-10 Athlete of the Week honors. Peterson clocked a 20.70 in the 200m dash for the fifth-fastest time in the nation after running the fourth-best time in the college ranks at 400m (45.99). Peterson opened the meet by running the second leg of the fifth-fastest 4x100m relay so far this year as he and teammates Deun White, Justin Kremer and Kelvin Love, Jr., went 39.62.

Latosha Wallace continued to lower her personal best time and climb higher on the all-time Arizona State lists in the 400m hurdles as she won the Sun Angel meet with a time of 56.75. Just the third Sun Devil to go under 57 seconds in the race, Wallace is currently ranked second in the collegiate ranks in the event while sitting sixth in the 400m dash as 52.49. She also helped the 4x400m relay team to the seventh-fastest time in the nation this year as Bridgette Williams, Shauntel Elcock and Jordan Durham combined with Wallace to go 3:34.42.

To say Sarah Stevens put together a fine weekend of competition would be an understatement as the sophomore recorded three regional qualifying marks, set one school record and moved up in the individual national rankings. Stevens finished second in the hammer in 62.28m (204-04) before winning the discus in 55.32m (181-06) and taking the shot put with a school-record toss of 18.03m (59-02.00).

With the success Sarah Stevens had over the weekend, she was named the Pac-10 Female Field Athlete of the Week and moved up to be projected as the national champion in both the shot put and discus and fifth in the hammer according to the Trackwire Dandy Dozen. Her top marks currently rank her first, second and fifth, respectively.

Aaron Aguayo nearly ran a sub-4 minutes mile at the Sun Angel Classic over the weekend, crossing the line at 4:00.14. His time is the second-fastest in school history and also stands as the third-fastest on the 1,500m lists when converted (3:41.74).

A pair of Sun Devil men competed in their top event for the first time this outdoor season and did quite well as both Matt Turner (long jump) and Ryan Whiting (shot put) won their respective events at the Sun Angel meet. Whiting recorded the second-best mark in the nation and the seventh-best in the world with his toss of 20.07m while Turner jumped to 7.79m, the fourth-best in the nation. On the all-time Arizona State lists, Whiting's mark ranks as the third-best all-time while Turner's jump ranks ninth all-time.

Two freshmen had impressive performances at the Sun Angel Track Classic last weekend as both Ryan Whiting and Kari Hardt recorded marks on the Arizona State all-time Top 10 lists. Whiting's mark of 20.07m is the third-best in the shot put while Hardt's time of 4:25.08 is the 10th-best in the women's 1,500m run.

Wallace, Hardt, Whiting, Stevens, Tuner and Aguayo were not the only ones to record marks on the Arizona State all-time Top 10 as seven other marks made the list. For the women, Angela Piana and Alana Waterford both move into a tie for fourth on the pole vault list with a clearance of 3.70m while Lisa Navarro cleared 3.30m to improve her No. 10 mark. Jessica Pressley improved her No. 2 mark in the shot put with a toss of 17.93m. For the men, Ryan Whiting moved into fifth on the discus list at 57.48m while javelin throwers Brad Roth (68.82m) and Andrew Smith (66.69m) improved their fifth and sixth-best, respectively.

Jessica Pressley's mark of 17.93m in the shot put also holds a distinction on the conference level as it ranks fourth all-time in the history of the Pac-10. Pressley's mark would have been a school record (17.46m by Sarah Stevens last year), but Stevens went 18.03m last week.

The combination of Sarah Stevens and Jessica Pressley looks to be one of the best throwing tandems in the nation today as both women rank in the Top 10 nationally in the shot put, discus and hammer events. The one-two punch for the Sun Devil field events, Stevens holds the best shot put mark in the nation at 18.03m with Pressley right behind her at 17.93m. In the discus, the women are second (56.39m) and fifth (54.70m), respectively, while ranking fifth (65.43m) and 10th (61.18m), respectively, in the hammer.

Brad Roth entered the season with a personal best throw of 210 feet in the javelin. In his first meet of the year, Roth bettered that to 217-3 (66.23m) before moving up to 218-2 (66.51m) the following weekend. He continued his trend of improved personal bests with a toss of 221-4 (67.47m) at the Arizona International (March 31) before once again improving, this time to 225-9 (68.82m) last weekend at the Sun Angel Track Classic.

Kyle Alcorn has competed in four total races (three events) in his Arizona State career this year with all three of his top marks ranking in the Top 10 in Sun Devil history. Over the weekend, Alcorn clocked in at 13:55.17 in the 5,000m run at Mt. SAC for the eighth-fastest in school history. Two weeks prior at the Stanford Invitational, Alcorn posted the fourth-fastest time in the 3,000m steepelchase (8:41.45) just one week removed from recording the seventh-fastest time in the 1,500m run (3:44.03).

It was a busy weekend for both current and former Sun Devils last weekend as the number of marks on the world Top 20 lists increased from eight to 14. For the current Devils, Domenik Peterson ranks tied for 15th in the 400m dash (45.99) and tied for 18th in the 200m dash (20.70) while women's sprinter Latosha Wallace ranks fifth in the 400m hurdles (56.75) and 17th in the 400m dash (52.49), making them the only Sun Devils to appear on the list in two events. Other current team members on the lists this week include Kelvin Love Jr. (21st, 200m), Aaron Aguayo (4th, mile), Kyle Alcorn (16th, 3,000m steeplechase) and Ryan Whiting (7th, shot put) for the men and women's athletes April Kubishta (8th, pole vault), Sarah Stevens (10th, shot put), Jessica Pressley (12th, shot put) and Jacquelyn Johnson (7th, heptathlon). A pair of former Sun Devils are also on the lists as Dwight Phillips ranks second in the long jump and Nick Hysong ranks 18th in the pole vault.

Two women currently lead the NCAA in their respective events (as of April 16) with Sarah Stevens (18.03m) in the shot put and April Kubishta (4.20m) in the pole vault both holding the top marks so far in 2007.

Along with the two top-ranked marks by Sarah Stevens and April Kubishta, 14 other marks so far this year rank among the Top 5 nationally. For the women Latosha Wallace (400m hurdles), Jessica Pressley (shot put) and Stevens (discus) each rank second while Amy Hastings (5,000m) and Jacquelyn Johnson (heptathlon) are fourth. Pressley (discus) and Stevens (hammer) also hold a fifth-best mark as well. On the men's side, Ryan Whiting is second in the shot put while Kyle Alcorn in third in the steeplechase. Domenik Peterson (400m) and Matt Turner (long jump) rank fourth while Peterson (200m), Aaron Aguayo (1,500m) and the 4x100m relay of Deun White, Peterson, Justin Kremer and Kelvin Love Jr., are fifth.

Jacquelyn Johnson (heptathlon) and Sarah Stevens (shot put and discus) are projected at No. 1 this week in the latest Dandy Dozen released April 16 while Amy Hastings (fourth in the 5,000m and fourth in the 10,000m) and Jessica Pressley (third in the shot put, second in the discus and ninth in the hammer) are the only other Sun Devils among the Top 12 in multiple individual events. Latosha Wallace is projected fourth in the 400m hurdles and is part of the seventh-ranked 4x400m relay team along with Bridgette Williams, Shauntel Elcock and Jordan Durham. Also on the list this week is April Kubishta (12th in the pole vault) and Tai Battle (eighth in the discus).

A trio of Sun Devils also hold a special distinction according the Dandy Dozen. On the track, only two women are ranked in the Top 12 in both the 5,000m and 10,000m runs as Amy Hastings is ranked fourth in both and Texas A&M's Sally Kipyego is ranked first in both. In the field, only two women are ranked in the Top 12 in the shot put, discus and hammer events with those two women being Sun Devils Sarah Stevens (first, first and fifth, respectively) and Jessica Pressley (third, second and ninth, respectively).

Aaron Aguayo is the lone Sun Devil man projected first in an event as he holds top billing in the 3,000m steeplechase. Ryan Whiting is ranked in a pair of events, including second in the shot put and ninth in the discus while Domenik Peterson has a hand in two events as well, ranking sixth in the 200m dash and seventh in the 4x100m relay with Deun White, Justin Kremer and Kelvin Love Jr. Also on the men's lists are Matt Turner (second in the long jump), Joshua Kinnaman (fifth in the decathlon) and Brad Roth (eighth in the javelin).

Looking at the men's discus list on the Dandy Dozen, a West Coast flavor is clearly present as the Top 10 are all from the west region with nine of the men hailing from Pac-10 schools.

Over the weekend of March 9-10, the ASU women scored 38 points and captured their first national team crown by winning the 2007 NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships in Fayetteville, Ark. The title, the first for the University since the women's golf team in 1998, is the second in track and field history at ASU after the men captured the 1977 outdoor crown under the direction of legendary Sun Devil coach Senon 'Baldy' Castillo.

For the second NCAA indoor meet and the third NCAA track & field event in a row, the Sun Devil women captured two individual championships. This year, Jacquelyn Johnson successfully defended her 2006 pentathlon crown while Sarah Stevens won her first national title by capturing the shot put. Last year, Johnson was joined by Amy Hastings, the winner of the 5,000m run. Outdoors last year, Johnson won her second heptathlon crown while Victoria Jackson took home gold in the 10,000m run.

Four women earned six total All-America honors over the weekend with both Amy Hastings and Sarah Stevens earning two accolades each. Stevens won the shot put and placed fifth in the weight throw to earn All-America status while Hastings was fourth in the 5,000m run and sixth in the 3,000m event. Jacquelyn Johnson (pentathlon) and Jessica Pressley (shot put) also earned their honors by placing among the Top 8 as they finished first and third, respectively.

All four men that competed in the NCAA Championships earned All-America honors, led by the third-place finish of Ryan Whiting in the shot put. Matt Turner finished seventh in the long jump and Joshua Kinnaman took eighth place in the heptathlon for the second year in a row to garner their awards while Aaron Aguayo earned the honor in the 3,000m run. Aguayo, who placed 10th overall in the race, was the seventh American to finish.

With their honors attained, several Sun Devils moved up the all-time All-American list in Sun Devil history. Aaron Aguayo received his fifth honor, moving him in to a tie for ninth all-time on the men's list while four women climbed higher as well. Amy Hastings received accolades eight and nine to move into a tie for second all-time and one All-America honor away from tying Maicel Malone for the most all-time. Jacquelyn Johnson (five), Jessica Pressley (four) and Sarah Stevens (three) are tied for 12th, 15th and 19th, respectively.

At the Husky Classic, Amy Hastings not only broke her own school record in the women's 5,000m run, she also broke a 26 year old America collegiate record in the event. Her time of 15:30.17 bettered her previous school mark of 15:45.45 set last year in the same meet and also was faster than the previous mark of 15:34.5 run by Margaret Groos of Virginia in 1981.

Hastings' American collegiate record in the 5,000m run (15:30.17) at the Husky Classic last weekend made her the third Sun Devil to currently hold an overall and/or American collegiate record. Indoors, she joins the men's 4x400m relay of Jason Barton, Steve Fitch, Seth Amoo and Domenik Peterson who set the mark of 3:03.43 in Ames, Iowa, on March 6, 2004. Another relay holds the collegiate mark on the outdoor surface as the 4x800m squad of Pete Richardson, Eddie Davis, Treg Scott and Mike Stahr ran 7:08.96 on April 7, 1984, in Tempe.

Next Saturday, the intrastate battle between Arizona State, Arizona and Northern Arizona will take place in Tempe as the three teams converge on Sun Angel Stadium for the Double Dual on Saturday, April 28. The hammer opens the action at 2 p.m. with the first running event, the men's 3,000m steeplechase, starting at 7 p.m.

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