Track & Field Travels To Eugene For The Pac-10 Championships

May 13, 2009

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    The 2009 Pac-10 Championships
    Stanford track and field will travel to Eugene, Ore. to compete in the Pac-10 Championships on Saturday and Sunday, May 16-17. The Cardinal will enter competition as the No. 10 team in the nation on the men's side and the No. 15 team in the nation on the women's side. The Pac-10 is once again loaded in 2009 with seven teams ranked in the top-25 on the men's side and six on the women's side.

    Television/Live Results
    FOX Sports Net will air a two-hour tape delayed show starting Thursday, May 21. Barry Tompkins and Dwight Stones will call the action, while color commentary will be provided by Tom Feuer. Lindsay Soto will provide additional commentary from the infield. Check the local listings for the airing dates of the championships on your FOX Sports Net regional carrier. Live results will be available on the Oregon Athletics website at:

    Men's Contenders
    The men enter the meet with a pair of top qualifiers, Myles Bradley in the 110-meter hurdles and Daniel Schaerer in the discus. Bradley is already the Stanford school record holder in the event with a mark of 13.61 and has a wind aided time of 13.55 that ranks fourth in the nation. Schaerer is second in Stanford history in the discus with a toss of 199-4, which is also second in the NCAA's so far this year. Garrett Heath returns as the Pac-10 Champion in the 1,500 meters. His time of 3:37.57 ranks second in the Pac-10 and third in the nation. Other top contenders include a pair of record breaking freshmen. Amaechi Morton enters the meet having already broke the school record in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 50.11. He currently ranks second in the Pac-10 and sixth in the nation in the event. Chris Derrick is the owner of the National Junior record in the 5,000 meters with a time of 13:29.98 and ranks third in the Pac-10 and fifth in the nation.

    Women's Contenders
    The Stanford women will be led by top qualifiers, Lauren Centrowitz in the 1,500 meters and Arantxa King in the triple jump. Centrowitz tied the school record in the event with a time of 4:10.42, which also ranks third in the nation. In addition, Centrowitz 800 ranks ninth in the 800 meters with a time of 2:07.81. King has the top mark in the triple jump of 42-4, which ranks 18th nationally. She is also the second qualifier in the long jump, the event in which she was an Olympian last summer with a mark of 21-2 1/2. That mark ranks her sixth in the nation. A pair of freshmen distance runners are also near the top of the conference. Laurynne Chetelat enters the meet second in the Pac-10 and fourth in the nation in the 5,000 meters with a time of 15:43.30. Meanwhile, Emilie Amaro is ranked third in the Pac-10 in the 3,000-meter steeplechase with a time of 10:11.67, which ranks 13th in the nation. Alex Gits returns as last season's Pac-10 Champion in the 10,000 meters, although she is yet to compete in the event in 2009.

    Last Season At The Pac-10 Championships
    The women led the way at the Pac-10 Championships, finishing as the runner-up with 117 points. The men claimed fifth place with 79 points. The strong women's performance was led by Erica McLain, who claimed the Pac-10 title in both the long jump and triple jump. The distance runners and throwers also showed off their depth claiming big points for Stanford. In the distances, Alex Gits captured the Pac-10 in the 10,000 meters, while Lauren Centrowitz doubled to a second place finish in the 1,500 meters and a third place finish in the 5,000. Also with top finishes were Teresa McWalters who was second in the 5,000 meters, Lindsay Allen who was second in the 3,000-meter steeplechase and Alicia Follmar who was third in the 1,500 meters. The throwers were paced by Danielle Maier, who placed second in the javelin and Melissa Yunghans who was third in the shot put. The men were paced by a pair of individual champions, Garrett Heath in the 1,500 meters and Wopamo Osaisai in the 100 meters. The 4x100-meter relay team of Daniel Belch, Andrew Dargie, Tyrone McGraw and Osaisai fared well to place third. Other top finishes by the Cardinal were Russell Brown, who placed fourth in the 1,500 meters, and Myles Bradley, who was fourth in the 110-meter hurdles.

    Pac-10 Multis
    Stanford got their first points of the 2009 Pac-10 Championships when the multi events were contested last weekend in Eugene. Corey Dysick placed fifth in the decathlon to score four points for the Cardinal men, while Whitney Liehr placed sixth in the heptathlon for three team points for the Stanford women. The points will carry over to the 2009 Pac-10 Championships on May 16-17.

    The 2009 Payton Jordan Cardinal Invitational
    Chris Derrick highlighted the meet by shattering the American Junior Record in the 5,000 meters with a time of 13:29.98. Derrick battled with Oklahoma State freshman German Fernandez before pushing the pace over the final three laps to create the necessary gap. Fernandez also ran under the old record of 13:37.91 set by 2008 U.S. Olympian Galen Rupp. Both Derrick and Fernandez are still considered juniors because they will not turn 20 in 2009. The time for Derrick was also the sixth fastest in school history with four of the five ahead of him on the all-time list being former Olympians for the Cardinal. It is also the fifth-fastest time in the NCAA so far this year and a Stanford freshman record. Garrett Heath also set a big personal best in the 1,500 meters with a time of 3:37.57. Heath finished fifth with two collegiate runners ahead of him. The three collegiate times were the fastest in the NCAA this year. Heath who is already a two-time All-American in the 1,500 meters, also moved up to fifth all-time on the Stanford list. On the women's side Stanford was led by Lauren Centrowitz who tied the Stanford school record in the 1,500 meters with a time of 4:10.42. Centrowitz tied the record of Malindi Elmore set back in 2003. In a field with mostly professionals, Centrowitz hung with the main pack throughout the race and finished just behind former Texas Tech star and nine-time NCAA Champion Sally Kipyego. The time by Centrowitz was also the third fastest in the NCAA this season so far.

    Stanford Sweeps The Big Meet
    For a third consecutive year the Stanford track and field teams swept the Big Meet. The Stanford women cruised to a 92-71 win, taking an early lead to leave no doubt who the eventual winner would be. The men's meet was much closer with Stanford winning 83-80. The meet was not clinched until the 3,000 meters, the second to last event of the meet. Myles Bradley highlighted the day for Stanford winning three events and breaking his own school record in the 110-meter hurdles. Bradley's time of 13.61 was also a new Big Meet record. Bradley also captured the long jump and the triple jump, achieving personal bests in both events. His marks of 24-9 ¾ in the long jump and 49-7 in the triple jump were both regional standards. Also breaking a school record for Stanford was Amaechi Morton in the 400-meter hurdles. Morton ran a time of 50.11 to take the Big Meet title. The Stanford freshman broke the record of 50.4 set by Randy White in 1971. The women were led by Arantxa King who won both the long jump and triple jump. King achieved regional standards of 21-2 ¾ in the long jump and 42-3 ¼ in the triple jump. Both marks were collegiate bests for the Stanford sophomore and moved her to third on both the Stanford all-time long jump and triple jump lists. Katerina Stefanidi also starred for Stanford on Saturday, setting the school record in the pole vault with a mark of 13-6 ½. Stefanidi fell short of the Big Meet title in an exciting jump off with reigning NCAA champion, Katie Morgan of Cal.

    Distance Runners Highlight The Stanford Invitational
    Stanford was led by Laurynne Chetelat in the 5,000 meters as she ran the second-fastest time ever by an American junior. Only Molly Huddle of Notre Dame who ran 15:36.95 in 2003 has run faster for someone who will not turn 19 in that calendar year. Chetelat's time of 15:43.31 also placed her fourth in an elite field, including second amongst collegiate runners. The time was the sixth-fastest all-time at Stanford and the second-fastest all-time for a freshman. It was also easily a regional standard for Chetelat.

    Three other Cardinal runners established the regional standard in the 5,000 meters as well. Georgia Griffin led the trio running in the second heat with a time of 16:30.81. In addition, Emilie Amaro and Stephanie Marcy finished in a near dead heat with times of 16:36.40 and 16:36.43, respectively.

    The men were led by an entertaining race by the Heath brothers. The brothers were paced early by rabbit Jacob Evans before younger brother Elliott Heath passed his older brother and began to push the pace over the final few laps. Despite Elliott's lead, Garrett Heath used a strong final kick to edge his brother at the line. Garrett's time of 13:42.27 was personal best for the eight-time All-American. Elliot also set a personal best with a time of 13:42.59 just two weeks after earning his first All-America honor by placing third in the 3,000 meters at the NCAA Indoor Championships. The times also place the Heath brothers eighth and ninth on the Stanford all-time list.

    Also with a big race in the distances was Jacob Riley in the 10,000 meters. Riley finished with a huge personal best to achieve the provisional standard with a time of 29.15.53.

    Stanford Completes Outstanding Indoor Season
    The Cardinal completed an outstanding 2009 indoor season at the NCAA Indoor Championships, where the men finished 11th and the women 12th. Every Stanford athlete that qualified to compete at the national meet earned All-America honors.

    The women were led by senior Lauren Centrowitz who finished third in the 3,000 meters and anchored the distance medley relay team that finished fourth. Alicia Follmar was also a two-time All-America in the 3,000 where she finished eighth and as a member of the DMR. Idara Otu and Maria Lattanzi also earned All-America honors in the DMR, while Laurynne Chetelat captured her first All-America honor in the 3,000 meters as well. The other Stanford All-American for the women was Whitney Liehr who finished 10th in the heptathlon.

    The men were led by freshman Chris Derrick who placed fourth in the 5,000 meters and fifth in the 3,000 meters in his first NCAA track meet. Elliot Heath also competed in the 3k where he finished third to earn the first All-America honor of his career. Also a first-time All-American was Myles Bradley who finished fifth in the 110-meter hurdles.

    Returning All-Americans
    The Cardinal women return seven All-Americans for the outdoor season, including three athletes who earned their first All-America honors during the indoor season. Seven-time All-American Lauren Centrowitz leads the Cardinal fresh off two more All-America honors during the indoor season. Alicia Follmar is a four-time All-American after earning two All-America honors in each of the last two seasons at the NCAA Indoor Championships. Earning an All-America honor the last two years as a member of that DMR team is Idara Otu. Freshmen Laurynne Chetelat (3,000 meters) and Maria Lattanzi (DMR) are coming off an indoor season where they earned their first All-America honor. Whitney Liehr also picked up her first All-America honor indoors in the heptathlon. Finally, Alexandra Gits picked up her first All-America honor last season outdoors in the 10,000 meters where she finished third at the NCAA Championships.

    A total of nine men who have earned All-America honors at Stanford will be back for the outdoor season. The men will be led by eight-time All-American Garrett Heath who returns after his best cross country season, but did not compete for Stanford indoors because his eligibility had been exhausted. He will be joined by his brother Elliott Heath who earned the first All-America honor of his career in the 3,000 meters at the 2009 NCAA Indoor Championships. Freshman Chris Derrick is already a three-time All-American after a seventh-place finish in cross country and earning a pair of All-America honors during the indoor track season. Other returning All-Americans in the distances are two-time All-American Hakon DeVries, Jacob Evans and Hari Mix. A pair of 400-meter runners who earned their All-America honors as members of the distance medley relay return. Andrew Dargie is coming off an impressive 2008 freshman season where he was a member of the DMR team that finished fourth at the NCAA Indoor Championships, in addition to qualifying for the NCAA Outdoor Championships in the open 400 meters. Chandy earned his All-America honor as a member of the DMR in 2007. Finally, newly anointed All-American Myles Bradley will look to build on his fifth place finish indoors in the 60-meter hurdles, outdoors in the 110-meter hurdles.

    Other Impact Returners
    The Cardinal women have several other impact returners including 2008 Olympian Arantxa King. King competed for Bermuda in Beijing and was also a key contributor for Stanford last season as she qualified for the NCAA Indoor Championships in the long jump. Also excelling in the long jump was Griffin Matthew, who returns after being one of two Stanford athletes to qualify for the 2008 NCAA Outdoor Championships in two events. She qualified in the 100 meters as well as the long jump. Lauren Stewart returns for her senior season where she will look to return to the NCAA's in the heptathlon. A pair of throwers return after qualifying for the NCAA Outdoor Championships last season. Jaynie Goodbody (hammer) should be a threat in the hammer, while Michaela Wallerstedt looks for a return trip to the NCAA's in the shot put. In the distances, Kate Niehaus returns fresh off a MPSF title in the 5,000 meters during the indoor season.

    Impact returners for the men include a duo of sophomore distance runners, Brendan Gregg and Jacob Riley. The duo made up a big portion of the 2008 cross country team that finished third in the nation. In addition, they were both NCAA provisional qualifiers in the 5,000 meters during the 2009 indoor season. Junior Justin-Marpole Bird also returns after being a finalist at 1,500 meters at the 2008 West Regional Championships and being a NCAA provisional qualifier in the mile during the 2009 indoor season. In the pole vault, Casey Roche returns after reaching a personal best of 17-1 during the indoor season.

    Top Newcomers
    In addition to the deep group of returners, Stanford has several freshmen ready to contribute right away, including Laurynne Chetelat and Maria Lattanzi who became All-Americans during the indoor season. Former world youth record holder Katerina Stefanidi looks to make an immediate impact in the pole vault after clearing 13-5 1/4 during the indoor season. She will be joined in the pole vault by Caitlin Hewitt who reached 12-11 1/2 during the indoor season. In the distances, Emilie Amaro had a strong cross country season and followed that up with NCAA provisional marks in both the 3,000 and 5,000 meters during the indoor season.

    Joining Derrick as a potential freshmen that could contribute right away are Geoffrey Tabor, Amaechi Morton and Dylan Ferris. Tabor is the 2008 junior national champion in the discus and Morton was the USATF national runner-up in the 400-meter hurdles, while becoming a NCAA provisional qualifier in the 400 meters during the indoor season. Ferris ran a time of 1:50.10 in the 800 meters during the indoor season to become an NCAA provisional qualifier.

    Stanford Women Win MPSF Championships
    Despite competing against three higher ranked teams, the Stanford women captured the MPSF Championship. The Cardinal entered the meet ranked No. 25 in the nation, but got four individual titles on their way to the conference title. Stanford distance runners led the way with three of the titles as Lauren Centrowitz won the mile, Laurynne Chetelat captured the 3,000 meters and Kate Niehaus took home the 5,000-meter title. In addition Arantxa King captured the title in the triple jump. The Cardinal totaled 115 points, to best second-place Oregon who finished with 91.5 points.

    The men's team was led by Myles Bradley who captured the individual MPSF title in the 60-meter hurdles. The men finished seventh overall with 68 points. They were tightly bunched with six other teams trailing the MPSF champ, UCLA with 83.5.

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