Ali 3rd, Woods 5th At Pac-10 Multi-Event Championships
May 10, 2009
EUGENE, ORE. - Juniors Nia Ali and Shana Woods placed third and fifth respectively at the Pac-10 Multi-Events Championships today (May 10) in Eugene, Ore. to earn USC 10 points and a second-place standing in the Pac-10 Championships with 20 more events scheduled May 16-17 at Hayward Field on the Oregon campus.
The first event on the day was the long jump and Ali, who was second after the first day, had a season-best leap of 19-3 1/4 (5.87m) to earn 810 points. She placed fourth in the event, just behind the first-day leader Brianne Theisen of Oregon who jumped 19-4 3/4 to gain 822 points and stretch her lead over Ali to 34 points. Woods, who entered the competition with the field's best regular season jump of 20-5, placed fifth with a jump of 18-10 1/2 (5.75m) to earn 774 points and dropped from fifth after the first day into sixth place.
The next event was the javelin throw and six girls all finished within six feet of each other, so there were no major changes in the standings. Woods placed fifth with a throw of 130-10 (39.88m) to earn 665 points and Ali placed sixth with a mark of 128-9 (39.24m) to earn 653 points.
With just the 800m race left, Theisen of Oregon led Ali 5,087-5,025, while McFadden of Oregon was in third with 4,871 points and Woods had jumped to fourth with 4,751 points. Right behind Woods were Whitney Liehr of Stanford (4,733), Ryann Krais of UCLA (4,713) and Shevell Quinley of Arizona (4,675), setting up a potential exciting finish.
The finish was exciting, however it was especially so for the hometown Ducks which saw McFadden and Theisen finish 1-2 in the race and earn enough points (909 and 899 respectively) for McFadden to vault over Ali to finish second. Ali placed ninth in the event with a time of 2:33.01 to earn 656 points and finish third overall with a new PR of 5,681. Her point total is the third-best all-time by a Trojan, bumping Woods down to fourth on the all-time list and automatically qualifies her for the NCAA Championships.
Woods had a season-best time of 2:26.41 to place fifth in the 800m race and earn 739 points. She finished the competition in fifth place with a season-best total of 5,490, 10 points off the automatic qualifier total needed but strenghthening her provisional standing.
As in all of the 21 events in the Pac-10 Track and Field Championships, scoring is10 points for first place, eight points for second place, six points for third place, five points for fourth place, four points for fifth place, three points for sixth place, two points for seventh place and one point for eighth place. So after one event of the 2009 Pac-10 Track and Field Championships, the USC women's team has 10 points and are in second place, trailing Oregon (19 points).