UCCS opens competition at RMAC Championships

By Doug Fitzgerald published May 7, 2007

ALAMOSA -- Competing in the first 10,000-meter run of her life, Tavia Hammond turned in an impressive eighth-place finish to lead the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs Monday at the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Outdoor Track and Field Championships at Rex Stadium.

Hammond was visibly nervous before the race but settled in quickly.

"It felt pretty good at first and then, coming around the fourth or fifth lap I felt it," said Hammond, who posted a time of 42 minutes, 27.28 seconds. "I knew I had to keep it in so I did."

Hammond jockeyed for position with a trio of Western State runners for much of the race. She was able to overtake Stephanie Petsch but could not keep pace with Jenny Hockman and Alexandria Tayrien, who finished fifth and sixth respectively. Mesa State's Esmeralda Martinez-Ramos ran with the lead pack early but faded to seventh.

"It was a different race, that's for sure," said Hammond. "You have to have a lot of endurance to run that race."

For her efforts, Hammond earned one team point for UCCS.

"I didn't think I was going to be able to do it when I saw there were 13 girls (in the race)," said Hammond. "It feels pretty good."

Sarah Shepard, on the other hand, did not feel good at all. After spending considerable pre-race time trying to loosen up a persistent shin injury, it tightened up upon landing after the first water jump in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, causing her to take a nasty -- and wet -- tumble.

Shepard's withdrawal from the race was a big blow for the Mountain Lions since she was the No. 3 seed in the conference coming into the event. With Shepard out, Jenna Dorsey Spitz stepped up for a fifth-place finish with a time of 12:20.49. Teammate Christy Severy took seventh.

Kelsey Barry and Whitney Knobbe both ran in the third heat of the 200-meter dash, with Barry taking fourth and Knobbe taking fifth. Knobbe also ran the 100, taking fifth in heat three. Neither qualified for Tuesday's finals.

In field events, Heidi Fehringer finished 13th in the high jump.

UCCS Players/Staff Featured

Sarah ShepardSarah ShepardDistanceFr.
Sarah ShepardSarah ShepardDistanceFr.
Sarah ShepardSarah ShepardDistanceFr.
Sarah ShepardSarah ShepardFr.
Sarah ShepardSarah ShepardFr.
Sarah ShepardSarah ShepardFr.
Sarah ShepardSarah ShepardFr.
Jenna Dorsey-SpitzJenna Dorsey-SpitzMid-Distance
Jenna Dorsey-SpitzJenna Dorsey-SpitzMid-Distance
Jenna Dorsey-SpitzJenna Dorsey-SpitzMid-Distance
Jenna Dorsey-SpitzJenna Dorsey-Spitz
Jenna Dorsey-SpitzJenna Dorsey-Spitz
Jenna Dorsey-SpitzJenna Dorsey-Spitz
Kelsey BarryKelsey BarrySprints
Kelsey BarryKelsey BarrySprints
Kelsey BarryKelsey BarrySprints
Kelsey BarryKelsey BarrySprints
Kelsey BarryKelsey BarrySprints
Christy SeveryChristy Severy
Christy SeveryChristy Severy
Christy SeveryChristy Severy
Christy SeveryChristy Severy
Christy SeveryChristy Severy
Whitney KnobbeWhitney KnobbeSprints
Whitney KnobbeWhitney KnobbeSprints
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