Bears Take Squads to Gainesville and Stanford

March 22, 2005

Berkeley, CA -

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Date Wednesday-Thursday March 23-24, 2005Place Berkeley, CATime All Day

In the vein of great decathletes from Cal, going back to Brutus Hamilton's silver medal performance in the 1920 Olympics and up to current head coach Chris Huffins' bronze medal performance in the 2000 Olympics, Edwards Stadium will be hosting the Cal Multi-Event this week. Senior All-American Brooke Meredith, who placed fifth at the 2004 NCAA championships in the heptathlon, will be competeing along-side freshman multi-eventer Tifani Grimes who will be participating in her first heptathlon as a Golden Bear. On the men's side, freshman Stephen Conrad will be competing unattached due to redshirt restrictions with Cal assistant coach Phil McMullen. As a world-class decathlete, McMullen finished fourth at the 2004 U.S. Olympic Trials and has been ranked as high as second in the U.S. and 11th in the world.

The Bear power and sprint groups, which include all distances below 800m and the field events, will be traveling to Gainesville, Fla, for the Florida Relays. The meet has become the East Coast's premiere early season meet for athletes and teams looking to set high season marks. Attended by more than 3,000 athletes from across the country, including the SEC powerhouse schools, Gainesville will showcase at least one world record holder, Florida's Kerron Clement. Clement lowered Michael Johnson's indoor 400m world record to 44.57 at the 2005 NCAA championships in Fayetteville, Ark. Among the Cal athletes to watch at the meet include senior All-American Rhuben Williams in the shot put with fellow senior thrower Tony Miranda in the discus. Senior Toby Atawo will be racing in the 200m and 100m coming off of a great indoor season that saw him finish strongly at the MPSF championships. The Bears women sprint group looks to be formidable this year. Athletes to watch on the women's side in Florida include junior hurdler Osarhiemen Omwanghe in the relays, freshman Brook Turner in the 400m, and 2004 Olympic Trials 200m semi-finalist Antonette Carter in the short sprints. The 4x200m relay will be the strong suit this weekend for the Golden Bears.

Widely considered to be the West Coast's compliment to the Florida Relays, the 2005 Stanford Relays will feature comparable attendances to its east coast counterpart, but the competition in Palo Alto will have more of a bent towards the distance events, complementing the areas that Stanford's men's and women's teams have traditionally been strong in. The Bears will bring newly crowned All-American Chloe Jarvis to compete in the 800m. Other athletes to watch on the women's side include indoor school record holder in the 1,500m Lindsey Maclise, senior Abby Parker in the 3,000SC, and cross country All-American Bridget Duffy. On the men's side, be sure to watch the McClary brothers make their outdoor debut. Alex McClary has already broken the school's indoor record in the 800m and will be looking to take a swing at the outdoor record soon. Senior Girmay Guangul holds the school record in the 10,000m and more recently took the indoor 5,000m record. Finally, junior Kevin Davis, who owns a PR of 8:55.56 in the 3,000SC, will also be competing.

All-American Rhuben Williams finished second in both the shot put 17.71m (58-01.25) and discus 54.60m (179-01.05) where he threw qualifying marks in both events. Returning redshirt senior Tony Miranda won the discus with a toss of 54.65m (179-03.05), while Cal alum Amin Nikfar won the shot put at 18.36m (60-03.00). Miranda and Williams led a phalanx of Cal throwers in the discus that placed consecutively down to seventh place. Redshirt freshman Craig Kent finished third in the shot put and was the last Golden Bear to qualify with his throw of 16.66m (54-08.00). Other regional qualifiers on the men's side include sophomore Adam Burgh who won the javelin at 59.79m (196-02.00), and freshman Rashaad Nunnally who won the long jump at 7.13m (23-04.75).

The women made their dominance most apparent in the 4x200m relay where Cal's `A' and `B' team finished 1-2, 10 seconds ahead of the third and fourth place teams. The `A' team clocked 1:40.90 while the `B' team ran 1:41.41. Freshman thrower Missy Faubus landed regional qualifying marks in both the shot put and discus at 14.77m(48-05.05) and 50.87m(166-10.75), respectively. Faubus bested Williams' double qualifier by winning both of her events instead of placing second. Freshman Cassandra Strickland, jumped 12.42m (40-09.00) in the triple jump, but due to a wind reading of 5.4m/s well over the allowable limit of 4.0m/s, the mark will not count towards qualifying for the NCAA Regional championship. Junior Antonette Carter's, winning mark in the long jump of 6.09m (20-00.00), which had a wind reading of 3.1 m/s, counts towards a trip to the NCAA Regional championship. Sophomore Giulia Urlando's winning throw in the hammer of 55.45m (181-11.00) qualifies her for the regional championship, as well.

Cal school record holder in the 5,000m and alum Bolota Asmerom finished second in the 3,000m at the USA Indoor Track and Field championships in Boston. Asmerom went into the competition with the third-fastest time in the country of 7:50.44, which he ran at the Tyson Foods Invitational only two weeks prior to the race in Boston. Asmerom ran a hard-fought race where it came down to who had the strongest kick in the end as former Stanford athlete Jonathon Riley bested Asmerom by only eight hundreths-of-a-seconds with a time 7:53.73. With no indoor world championships this year, Asmerom finished the season with the 16th-fastest time in world for the 3,000m.

Last summer at the U.S. Olympic Trials, Asmerom finished third in the 5,000m, earning him a spot on the U.S. Olympic team. Asmerom would be denied a trip to Athens however, since he did not have an Olympic 'A' standard, which is necessary for a team to send more than one athlete in any given event.

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