Graham Earns Trip to Nationals, Five UCCS Records Fall at Air Force Meet
COLORADO SPRINGS - It took only two meets for Lauren Graham to punch her ticket to the 2011 indoor nationals and for the Mountain Lions to set five new school records.
The University of Colorado at Colorado Springs pole vaulter cleared 12 feet, 9.5 inches (3.9 meters) Friday at the Air Force All-Comers Meet to earn an automatic qualifying mark to the NCAA Division II National Indoor Track & Field Championships, which will be held March 11-12 at Albuquerque, N.M.
The sophomore From Lancaster, Calif., nearly qualified at the Mountain Lions' first meet of the season, the Colorado Mines Alumni Extravaganza on Dec. 10, but just missed.
Three other Mountain Lions nailed new school records at the Cadet Fieldhouse track. Ailena McDonald ran an altitude-and-track-adjusted time of 8.3 seconds (8.26 actual) in the 60-meter dash to set a new school mark, while Anthony Cardinale flew 21-05.25 (6.84 meters) set the standard in the long jump. Cardinale also won the event, beating seven NCAA Division I competitors, seven from Division II and two unattached.
Jonathan Wright set new records in both the 200- and 400-meter dashes. His times of 22.49 seconds in the 200 and 49.74 seconds in the 400 both would have been new outdoor personal records as well for the freshman from Grand Junction. Wright took eighth overall in the 200 and third in the 400.
Had Wright noy set a new school mark in the 400, Colby Elliott would have given it a scare. The junior from Deer Trail, Colo., took fourth in the event, a scant 0.2 seconds behind Wright. Likewise for Emily Weeks, who was just 0.15 behind McDonald in the women's 60 meters. Weeks also took seventh in the long jump.
Ashley Benfield took sixth overall in both the women's 200 and 400 meters, while Alexa Urban was eighth and 10th respectively. Among Division II runners, however, Benfield was second and Urban third in both events.
Veronica Sandoval was the top D-II finisher in the 800 meters (sixth overall) with a non-adjusted mark of 2:30.83. Crossing about a second later were the UCCS trio of Kassie Mazzocco, Melissa Buchanan and Sara Kettelkamp.
Senior Kaitlin Frier took an impressive fourth place in the mile, the best result of any of the seven D-II competitors. Likewise, the UCCS 4X440 relay team of Benfield, Urban, Weeks and Dawn Eckert took fifth overall and No. 1 of the D-IIs.
In the men's 200, both Cardinale and Jason Shaver clocked in less than a second behind Wright's school-record mark. Jon Christian, Alan Ford and Travis Whitman all posted top-half performance in the 34-man field in the 400, each defeating several Division I athletes.
Matt Winfrey was second among D-II runners and sixth overall in the 800 meters while Elliott was first and seventh respectively in the 60-meter hurdles. Matthew Feola and Brien Hopkins took the next two spots.
Wright, Christian, Whitman and Elliott teamed up to take sixth overall and first among D-IIs in the 4X440 relay. Freshman Michael Souza took fourth in the high jump, while Joel Fraser was fifth in the pole vault.
|Additional News Stories|
|May 27, 2011||Graham vaults to sixth place at nationals||TURLOCK, Calif. – Lauren Graham of the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs took sixth place in the pole vault Friday evening at the 2011 NCAA Division II National Outdoor Track & Field Championships.|
|May 15, 2011||Benfield wins 400 hurdles as track season ends for all but one Mountain Lion||GOLDEN - Ashley Benfield won the 400-meter hurdles as the outdoor track & field season ended Sunday for all but one University of Colorado at Colorado Springs athlete at the Colorado Mines Last Chance Qualifier at Stermole Track & Field Complex.|
|May 11, 2011||Twelve UCCS track & field athletes named All-RMAC||The University of Colorado-Colorado Springs had 12 athletes from nine events gain All-Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference honors during the RMAC Outdoor Track and Field Championship on May 8-10 in Golden.|
|May 10, 2011||Graham wins pole vault as UCCS completes RMAC championships||GOLDEN, Colo. – Lauren Graham won the pole vault Tuesday during the final day of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Outdoor Track & Field Championships. In doing so, she set new records in the event for the RMAC, the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and the Stermole Track & Field Complex.|
|April 30, 2011||Quad meet provides final tuneup prior to conference championship||GOLDEN, Colo. – The University of Colorado at Colorado Springs track team had its final tuneup preceding the conference championship meet when the Mountain Lions competed Friday at the CSM Quad Meet at Stermole Track & Field Complex.|