Jan. 20, 2007
With seven inches of snow on the ground outside, it was a great day for the Eastern Washington University track and field team to have their first indoor meet of the season. The 20th Annual Martin Invitational was held at the Thorpe Fieldhouse in Cheney, Wash., Saturday (Jan. 20).
On the women's side, seniors Teanna Meinhold and Sarah Hegna both qualified for the Big Sky Conference Indoor Championships in their events. Meinhold had a triple jump of 37-7 3/4, four inches above the qualifying mark of 37-3. Her teammates Candice Nell (36-7 1/2), Allysen Halsen (34-2 1/2), and Andrea Patterson 33-7 1/2) finished right behind her, as the Eagles took the top four spots in that event.
"I was pleased with Teanna," said women's head coach Marcia Mecklenburg. "Teanna has some high goals this year and wants to finish her senior year with some good marks. It will be a good year for Teanna."
Hegna had a high jump of 11-11 3/4 to take first. The qualifying mark is 11-5 1/4.
"I expect Sarah to really break through this year," said Mecklenburg. "She has been jumping about 12-feet for a long time and has been very consistent. She has been very steady for us and does pretty well at all of the meets, but she is ready for a breakthrough, and ready to go to the next level. Today she had a good starting meet mark and I think she will do really well this year."
"For a freshman to come in and win two events says a lot," added Mecklenburg on Krystal Deyo. "Her 55 was very impressive. We are looking for some better marks in the long jump, but it is early in the season so I know she will start putting them out there. She is coming off a surgery from last year and hasn't jumped a whole lot so I know when she gets more jumps in her marks will start to go up. She will help us out in that event a lot."
Camille Moseley (5:21.45), Nikki Buchholtz (5:21.62), Kiri Garruto (5:29.41), and Amber Nickelson (5:32.76) took the first four spots in the mile, respectively. Also in the long distance races, Eastern newcomer Alex McNairy took first in the 800 (2:33.87).
"The distance crew each year is getting closer and closer," said Mecklenburg. "They are bonding well and running well together. That helps a lot both for the indoor and outdoor seasons. I know they didn't have a lot of competition this week, but next week at the University of Washington that should help them and get them more experience before conference."
Senior Marcus Whitehead ran a 1:04.54 500-meter race to set a new meet record. The old record of 1:04.68 was set by Bruce Jackson on Jan. 19, 2002. Whitehead was just shy of setting the Eastern school record of 1:04. 36.
"Marcus had a great race," said men's head coach Stan Kerr. "The experience showed in that performance. He went out fast and put some pressure on the rest of the field."
Senior Chad Chambers qualified for the BSC Championships by placing second in the high jump at 6-5 1/2.
"Chad had a nice breakthrough today," Kerr said. "He has been in a high jump slump coming off of last season and was injured, but he broke through today. He jumped really nice and was quick off the ground, and that will help his confidence."
Mike Uhlenkott, with a pole vault of 14-7 1/2 also qualified.
In the horizontal jumps, both Geoff Penrod and Jeff Kaune qualified in their events. Penrod had a jump of 22-11 1/4 in the long jump, four inches more than he needed to qualify and Kaune jumped 46-1 1/2 in the triple jump with the qualifying mark being 45-0 1/2.
"We had great team depth in the jumps today," added Kerr. "Both Penrod and Kaune had great jumps today. Penrod's jump was probably a foot or two longer but he put his hand back and that cost him a little and Kaune for his first meet of the season also jumped well."
In the throws, David Paul (55-7) and Robert Wilske (51-1 1/2) took first and second, respectively, and qualified in the shot put as the Eagles took the top four spots in that event. Corey Lehosky took third (47-10 1/2) and Scott Banning (47-7 1/4) finished fourth, respectively.
"Paul is a great season leader and his performances are showing it," Kerr added. "He is setting a great example for the freshmen and sophomores.
With 4, 712 points, senior Matt Ludwigson won the heptathlon. Ludwdigson placed first in the long jump (20-11 1/4), the shot put (40-7), high jump (6-2), and tied for first in the 55 hurdles (8.44 and the pole vault (13-1 1/2).
"Matt will move up and contend for the conference championship in the heptathlon," said Kerr. "He has a lot of experience and has been to a lot of different meets under a lot of conditions. That helps him to keep his composure and he knows what to expect. He pushes himself hard everyday, and he is a great guy to work with. A record and/or championship are not out of the question for Matt."
The squads will split next week as some will travel to the University of Washington and others will compete at Montana State University.