Track & Field Recap: CSU wins men's and women's titles at AFA; Distance runners excel at Husky Classic
Feb. 9, 2013
By Nate Lake
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - The Colorado State track & field nearly went undefeated at the Team Challenge Saturday, reaffirming its 2013 dominance of the Cadet Field House once again. The Team Challenge, an annual event hosted by the Air Force Academy, is a meet that matches up individual schools against each other in the form of dual meets. Colorado State was undefeated on the women’s side of the meet, beating Air Force, Colorado, and BYU. The men’s team won two matchups and lost the other, beating BYU and Colorado but losing to Air Force.
Ram throwers continued their 2013 domination at the Team Challenge, winning both the men’s and women’s weight throw. Kiah Hicks took first on the women’s side with a throw of 62 feet, 2.25 inches. Junior Ken Harriman took first on the men’s side with a throw of 63-0.75, which is tops in the Mountain West this season and 35th in Division I. Colorado State head track & field coach Brian Bedard was very impressed with Harriman’s performance. “Ken Harriman broke through in the weight throw. To see him come alive and do good things was a positive for both him and the team,” Bedard said.
Hicks also won the women’s shot put with a throw of 47-4.5 while teammate Elizabeth Johnson took second with a toss of 46-8.75. Freshman Tyler Schultz finished second in the men’s shot put with a throw of 55-5.5.
It may have been hurdler Trevor Brown, though, who completed the most impressive feat Saturday. Brown once again broke his personal, school, and Mountain West record with a time of 7.84 seconds in the 60-meter hurdles. The time qualifies for the 17th best in Division I action this year. Teammate Kelby Dias was right behind Brown, finishing in 7.94 seconds for second place.
Ram jumpers didn’t miss out on the spotlight either. Junior transfer Ashley Reid jumped 5-10.5 in the women’s high jump, taking second place and setting a personal record. The jump moves her into second place in CSU history behind Liz Toman, who jumped 5-11.25 during the 2000 indoor season. Her jump is also 26th best in Division I this season. Freshman Monica Franco jumped 5-8 to earn fourth place. Graham Gilliland placed fourth in the men’s triple jump, leaping 23-1.25. He also took third in the men’s triple jump, jumping 48-3.5. Teammate Jonathan Edmunds finished in second place with a jump of 48-8.25. Both jumps are among the top ten in Colorado State history. Cheyenne Hall jumped 39-8.5 for third place in the women’s triple jump, good for fifth in CSU history and fifth in the Mountain West this season.
The Rams also excelled in sprints on Saturday. A.J. Whitaker clocked in at 6.90 for fourth place in the men’s 60-meter dash, while Trevor Brown took his talents to the men’s 200-meter dash and finished in third place with a time of 21.90. Robert Wasinger finished in 49.85 for sixth place in the men’s 400-meter dash. Stephanie Gerber clocked in at 57.81 for fourth place in the women’s 400-meter dash.
With most of the rest of her distance teammates participating in the Husky Classic in Seattle, Wash., Elle Killingsworth impressed at the Team Challenge with a victory in the women’s 3,000-meter run. She finished in 11:18.57.
Bedard was very happy with his team’s performance at the Team Challenge. “It was a good team event. We had good team chemistry, everybody was cheering for each other. It was nice as coaches, because there were highlights in every event area. A lot of personal records and a lot of athletes moving up into individual event top 20s in CSU history. It was a good tune-up meet for the conference,” Bedard said.
While their teammates were impressing at the Team Challenge, the CSU distance runners were putting on a show of their own at the Husky Classic, hosted by the University of Washington.
Alex Muntefering continued the trend of personal bests for the Rams, moving into sixth place in Colorado State history with his time of 8:12.38 in the men’s 3000-meter run. He took second place in his heat and 30th overall out of 84 finishers. Spenser Lynass finished the race in 8:26.01. Freshman teammate Jacob Morgan clocked in at 8:29.08, a personal best.
Kaitlin Hanenburg took 30th place in the women’s 3000-meter run with a time of 9 minutes, 55.18 seconds.
Senior Holly Keeper improved on her personal record for the second straight week, running the women’s mile in 4:54.99, which is good for tenth place in Colorado State history. She led her heat for most of the race, running the first 800 meters in 2:32, but ended up taking second place in the heat by a fraction of a second. She finished 16th overall in a field of 64 competitors.
In the men’s mile, Ram Andrew Goodman finished in 4:13.30 for 37th place. It was Alex Balsiger who exhibited the prime performance in the mile, though. He clocked in at 4:08.82 and took 12th place in the field of 77, despite distance coach Art Siemers’ observation that Balsiger was not at 100 percent.
Middle distance veteran Seth Butler finished in fourth place in his heat of the men’s 800-meter run, posting a time of 1:53.41. The time earned him 22nd place.
Siemers thought the Husky Classic was a solid meet for his distance runners. “The distance squad had a successful meet with six personal records out of 11 performances. This should set us up for a strong conference meet,” Siemers said.
After a busy weekend at the Team Challenge and Husky Classic, a handful of Rams will head to the Joe Davies Open on Feb. 16 to prepare for the Mountain West Conference championships, which take place the following weekend.