Stevens Takes National Lead in the Weight Throw with Big Toss at NAU

Feb. 7, 2009

TEMPE – The Arizona State University track and field and cross country program sent athletes to three different competitions on Saturday with several Sun Devils recording strong showings in their meets. Leading the way was Sarah Stevens, a 10-time All-American in the throws, who hit a mark of 21.59m (70-10.00) in the weight throw to win the event at the NAU Team Challenge in Flagstaff and claim the current national lead among collegiate competitors.

Along with the NAU meet, ASU sent eight athletes to the New Mexico Classic in Albuquerque, N.M., while three freshmen traveled to Derwood, Md., to compete in the U.S. Junior Cross Country Championships. In all on the day, the Sun Devils won seven events, including six by the women, and added another nine Top 3 placements. Stevens’ weight throw mark was the lone NCAA automatic qualifier earned on the day while two other marks were provisional qualifiers. Those came from Stevens in the shot put at the NAU meet (16.48m/54-01.00) and from Charonda Williams in the 200m dash (23.74) at the New Mexico meet.

In Flagstaff, Stevens won both the throwing events with her weight throw mark going as the second-best in school history and only the second toss to break the 70-foot barrier. Other winners at the NAU meet included Stephanie Garnett in the long jump (6.00m/19-08.25), Kayla Sanchez in the 200m dash (25.12) and Jeremy Egboro in the men’s triple jump (14.63m/48-00.00). Williams won the women’s 200m dash in Albuquerque before helping the relay team of Jevon Benjamin, Dominique’ Maloy and Shauntel Elcock to claim the 4x400m (3:44.82).

One other mark on the day made a place in the ASU all-time Top 5 and it came in the men’s weight throw in Flagstaff as Jeff Helwig took fourth place in the meet with a toss of 17.35m (56-11.25). That mark stands at the fifth-best in school history.

Near the nation’s capital, two women and one man competed in the cross country champions. In the women’s junior 6,000m race, Kauren Tarver placed 24th (22:40) while Kate Lydy finished 34th (23:10). Matt Boughton ran in the men’s junior 8,000m race and finished 46th (26:56).

A trio of meets await the Sun Devils next weekend, starting with the Texas A&M Invitational in College Station, Texas, on Friday and Saturday. The TAMU meet will give the Sun Devils a chance to compete at the site of this year’s indoor NCAA Championships. The two other meets, both taking place on Saturday, will include many of the team’s distance runners opening their indoor season at the Husky Classic in Seattle, Wash., while other team members will return to Flagstaff for the NAU Tune-Up.

Meet Highlights - NAU Team Challenge
Saturday, February 7 - Northern Arizona
NCAA Automatic Qualifiers
Sarah Stevens - W Weight - 21.59m (70-10.00)

NCAA Provisional Qualifiers
Sarah Stevens - W Shot Put - 16.48m (54-01.00)

Event Winners
Jeremy Egboro - M Triple Jump - 14.63m (48-00.00)
Stephanie Garnett - W Long Jump - 6.00m (19-08.25)
Kayla Sanchez - W 200m - 25.12
Sarah Stevens - W Weight - 21.59m (70-10.00)
Sarah Stevens - W Shot Put - 16.48m (54-01.00)

Meet Highlights - New Mexico Classic
Saturday, February 7 - New Mexico
NCAA Provisional Qualifiers
Charonda Williams - W 200m - 23.74

Event Winners
Charonda Williams - W 200m - 23.74
Maloy, Benjamin, Elcock, Williams - W 4x400m Relay - 3:44.82

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