Track & Field Sends Seven Athletes to NCAA Championships

May 25, 2001


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Seven Cal athletes compete in a total of eight events at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships, Wed.-Sat., May 30-June 2, in Eugene, Ore. Last year, Cal sent six athletes. Three of the seven are veterans of outdoor nationals. The Golden Bears making return trips are: seniors Bolota Asmerom (5000m) and Maria Lopez (pole vault), and junior Jennifer Joyce (hammer, 3rd-straight appearance). Senior Dana Lawson competes in the shot put and discus in her first trip to NCAA outdoors after earning All-America honors for her third-place finish in the shot at NCAA indoors this year. The true rookies are: juniors Bubba McLean (pole vault) and Nate DeSomber (shot put), and freshman Rhuben Williams (shot put).

CAL'S COMPETITION SCHEDULEName	        Date	Time	        Event	        Time/Mark	Nat'l RankBubba McLean	May 30	4:00 p.m.	Pole Vault	17-4.5	        T17thDana Lawson	May 30	3:00 p.m.	Discus	        175-11	        9th	        May 31	6:00 p.m.	Shot Put	53-6	        9thMaria Lopez	June 1	5:00 p.m.	Pole Vault	13-2.5	        T16thBolota Asmerom	June 1	8:00 p.m.	5000m	        13:31.88	3rdJennifer Joyce	June 2	3:00 p.m.	Hammer	        203-8	        8thNate DeSomber	June 2	6:00 p.m.	Shot Put	61-7	        15thRhuben Williams	June 2	6:00 p.m.	Shot Put	60-9.25	        19th

Stanford won last year's men's championship by breaking Arkansas' string of eight-straight team titles. LSU claimed the women's crown. The Cal men tied for 21st (highest since 1993) with 10 points from Bevan Hart's victory in the decathlon. The Cal women tied for 19th (highest since 1990) with 12 points - 6 points (Missy Vanek, 3rd in heptathlon), 5 points (Jennifer Joyce, 5th in hammer) and 1 point (Maria Lopez, 8th in pole vault). Also competing last year for Cal were Bolota Asmerom (10th, 5000m) and Robert Kennedy (12th, long jump).

The Cal men captured sixth place with 85 points at the Pac-10 Championships in Berkeley last weekend, which was its best finish since taking sixth in 1995. The Cal women finished seventh with 54 points, which was its best since finishing the same in 1997. The Bears crowned one Pac-10 champion in the meet, as Asmerom took home the men's 5000m title (14:07.23). Other medalists for the Bears included: McLean in the pole vault (2nd, 17-3), Vincent Ibia in the triple jump (2nd, 50-5.25), Kennedy in the long jump (2nd, 24-5.5), Garett Collier in the hammer (3rd, 201-6), DeSomber in the shot put (3rd, PR: 61-7), Shawna Adkins in the triple jump (2nd, 41-1.75), Lawson in the discus (2nd, PR: 175-11) and Joyce in the hammer (3rd, 203-3).

The Cal record books have been altered by several athletes so far during the 2001 season. Asmerom broke his own school record in the 5000m with a time of 13:31.88 at the Mt. SAC Relays. Lopez also improved upon her own Cal record in the pole vault, winning the Big Meet in 13-2.5. Jenna Johnson (48-2) and Rhuben Williams (60-9.25) set the Cal freshmen records in the shot put. The women's record dated back to Cindi Durchslag's throw of 46-10 in 1983, while the men's went back to David Porath's mark of 58-8 in 1979. Corey Hardin's throw of 187-0 in the javelin broke Porath's 1979 freshman record of 183-0.

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