Cal Hosts 116th Renewal of Big Meet vs. Stanford Saturday

April 6, 2010

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THIS WEEK IN CAL TRACK & FIELD: California hosts the annual Big Meet Saturday when the Stanford Cardinal visits Edwards Stadium. The men will be facing off against each other for the 116th time, while the Cal and Stanford women meet for the 31st consecutive year.

The Golden Bears will be looking to break into the win column for the first time since 2006, as the Cardinal has swept the competition each of the last three seasons. Last spring, the Stanford men edged Cal, 83-80, in a meet that wasn't decided until the next-to-last event, while the Cardinal women prevailed, 92-71.

Overall, Cal leads the men's race, 66-47-2, and Stanford holds a 20-10 advantage on the women's side.

The field events begin with the women's hammer at 10:30 a.m., while the running events are scheduled to start at 1:05 p.m. The meet will conclude with the men's 4x400-meter relay at 4:45 p.m. There will also be a ceremony to honor graduating seniors at 3:55 p.m.

BIG MEET STREAKS: Both Cal and Stanford have put together some impressive runs against their Bay Area opponents in the history of the Big Meet. The longest streak lasted from 1972-96 when the Cal men won 25 Big Meets in a row. The Stanford men claimed 11 straight from 1924-34 and are currently on a three-meet roll since Cal's last victory in 2006. On the women's side, the series was even through 2000 with the Bears and Cardinal tied at 10 wins each. However, Stanford has not lost to Cal since that 2000 event, having taken 10 straight.

MORRISON POSTS NO. 5 DECATHLON MARK AT CAL: In his first decathlon effort of the season, junior Mike Morrison finished second to Oregon's Ashton Eaton at the Texas Relays April 1, putting up a total of 7,557 points that ranks as the fifth-highest mark in school history and highest for a Golden Bear since Bevan Hart accumulated 8,002 points in 2000.. Morrison established four PRs in the two-day competition and overtook Texas A&M's Trinity Otto on the final event - the 1500 meters - for the runner-up position. Only four men are ahead of Morrison on Cal's all-time performer's list - Chris Huffins (school-record 8,007 points in 1993), Hart (8002 in 2000), Ross Bomben (7,808 in 1998) and Dave Steen (7,778 in 1980).

JIM CLICK SHOOTOUT RECAP: Cherrelle Garrett won the 100 and 200 meters and anchored the Bears' victorious 4x100 relay and Steve Sodaro posted a victory in the 3000 meters and a runner-up finish in the 1500 meters to lead the Cal track & field team at the Jim Click Shootout at the University of Arizona last Saturday. In all, the Golden Bears set 13 personal bests and 11 season bests on the day.

Others first-place finishers for Cal included Alima Kamara in the 400, Deborah Maier in the 1500 and Kimyon Broom in the 100 hurdles. Hammed Suleman (long jump, triple jump), Patrick Kowalsky (shot put), Sofia Oberg (800) and the women's 4x400 relay all took second in their respective events.

Kristen Meister was third in the high jump, and her height of 5-10.75 was the No. 3 mark ever at Cal. Taylor Bryson also ran the school's No. 7 3000-meter steeplechase (11:37.96), while other Top 10 Cal performances came from Kamara (400, 53.84, #9), Oberg (800, 2:06.81, #8), Alison Greggor (5000, 16:25.88, #7), Linda Oseso (hammer, 169-2, #9) and the 4x100 relay (45.35, #9).

Suleman continued his impressive freshman season with a personal-best mark of 24-8.50 in the long jump, and Kowalsky, the MPSF indoor champion in the shot put, improved his lifetime best to 59-3. Broom's 13.32 in the 100 hurdles was also a season best.

PAC-10 CHAMPIONSHIPS AT CAL: California will host the 2010 Pac-10 Outdoor Track & Field Championships at Edwards Stadium/Goldman Field this spring. The decathlon and heptathlon will take place May 8-9, with the remaining events being contested May 15-16. Cal last played host to the meet in 2001. Check for more details, including event times and ticket information, as the event gets closer.

CAL IN THE 2009 BIG MEET: Although California fell to Stanford in the 115th annual Big Meet at Stanford, the Golden Bears produced multiple strong performances.

Katie Morgan and Ryan Young both set Big Meet records for Cal. Morgan took top honors with a height of 13-6.50 in the pole vault, winning a jump-off with Stanford's Katerina Stefanidi that took 15 attempts to decide a victor. Young broke the previous Big Meet record in the javelin, which was set in 1931, with his throw of 224-10. The old mark was 221-7 by Cal's Kenneth Churchill.

In addition, Kimyon Broom established a Big Meet record in the 100-meter hurdles, clocking a time of 13.26. She surpassed the old record time of 13.43, set in 2004 by the Bears' Osarhiemen Omwanghe.

Cherrelle Garrett won both the 100 and the 200, clocking a personal-best time of 11.34 in the 100 that ranks second in school history and was just shy of a Big Meet record. In the 200, she crossed the finish line at 23.81. Another victory in the sprints for the Bears came from senior Kellan Patterson, who won the men's 100 at 10.60.

Brook Turner led a 1-2-3 Cal finish in the women's 400 meters in 54.42, and Evelyn Smith won the 400-meter hurdles in 1:00.92. Michael Coe (3000, 8:13.09) and Steve Sodaro (3000 SC, 8:54.16) prevailed at longer distances, and the Bears swept all four of the relay events.

MATUSAK SETS INDOOR MILE RECORD: Mark Matusak ran the second-fastest mile in school history under any conditions when he covered the distance in 3:58.36 indoors at the Husky Classic Feb. 13. Only teammate Michael Coe's 3:56.18 mile, set outdoors last year, is better. Other Bears to run a sub-4-minute mile outdoors are David Torrence (3:58.62, 2007), Don Bowden (3:58.7, 1957) and Andy Clifford (3:59.59, 1979). Matusak went on to win the 3000 meters at the MPSF championships in 7:59.67 and ran leadoff on Cal's distance medley relay that finished fourth at the NCAA meet in 9:38.19. Last week, in his 2010 outdoor debut, Matusak stepped down to the shorter 800 meters and posted a time of 1:53.69 at the Jim Click Shootout.

VROOM BROOM: Senior Kimyon Broom broke out of the blocks quickly in her first meet of the 2010 campaign, setting a Cal indoor record in the 60-meter hurdles at the Cherry & Silver Invitational in Albuquerque, N.M. (8.30). Broom then matched the time in her next competition, also crossing the line in 8.30 at the UW Invitational a week later. The two-time defending Pac-10 champion in the 100 hurdles outdoors, Broom owns the Cal outdoor mark of 13.02. So far this season, she has captured the 100 hurdles at the Stanford Invitational and the Jim Click Shootout and has a best of 13.32 seconds.

LANDRY BECOMES CAL'S 10TH 17-FOOT POLE VAULTER: Connor Landry, a transfer to Cal from Cal Poly, has become the 10th pole vaulter in school history to clear 17 feet in the event. He posted an indoor best of 17-5.50 at the Husky Classic, and then cleared 17-0.75 outdoors at the Stanford Opener. Landry's indoor mark was the highest for a Bear since Robert McLean went 18-0.50 in 2002. The Bears also boast a second 17-footer in Ryan Shuler, who owns a PR of 17-4.25, while Justin Miller just missed the level indoors when he vaulted 16-11.50.

NEWCOMERS HIGHLIGHT CAL'S BEST MARKS LIST: Cal's men's recruiting class was rated the fourth best in the country by Track & Field News, and the new faces have not disappointed. Tom Booker helped the Bears' distance medley relay place fourth at the NCAA indoor meet and he owns the team's top time in the 400 meters outdoors at 49.02. Collin Jarvis, also a key member of the cross country team in the fall, covered the 3000 meters in 8:14.63 at the Stanford Opener, which rates 10th on the school's all-time list. In the horizontal jumps, Hammed Suleman tops the charts in both the long jump (24-8.50) and triple jump (49-9.25). His TJ PR mark is the best for a Cal athlete in six years, since Bruce Giron and Vincent Ibia both surpassed 52 feet in 2004. Other newcomers leading the best marks lists are Mike Morrison (100m, decathlon), Cody Schmidt (3000m steeplechase) and Connor Landry (pole vault). All this despite the fact several freshmen expected to contribute right away have been sidelined to date by injury, notably long jumper Chase Wheeler, middle distance specialist James Brewer and high jumper Maurice Valentine Jr.

Although not as highly rated as their male counterparts, the women's newcomer group owns team best marks in four events. Alima Kamara has a best of 53.84 in the 400 meters, and Sofia Oberg leads the list in both the 800 (2:06.61) and 1500 (4:23.75). In addition, Angelica Weaver's 1:01.36 paces all Bear 400 hurdlers.

TEAM RANKINGS: Both the Cal men and women are ranked among the top teams in the country in the first regular-season rankings from the track & field coaches association (USTFCCCA). The Golden Bear men are 19th, while the women are 30th. During the indoor season, Cal's men rose as high as 16th and finished 17th at the NCAA championships.

Individual Rankings

Name Event Mark NCAA Pac-10MenCollin Jarvis 3000m 8:14.63 3 2Connor Landry PV 17-0.75 T18 4Hammed Suleman LJ 24-8.50 T18 2Patrick Kowalsky SP 59-3.00 13 3Mike Morrison Decathlon 7557 2 2

WomenAlima Kamara 400m 53.84 13 1Sofia Oberg 800m 2:06.81 7 2Sofia Oberg 1500m 4:23.79 14 9Deborah Maier 1500m 4:23.98 15 10Alison Greggor 5000m 16:25.88 19 1Kristen Meister HJ 5-10.75 T8 2Kimyon Broom 100mH 13.32 10 2

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