Jan. 30, 1998

Terek Triumphs in Final Scene, Breaks MSU Pole Vault Mark

EAST LANSING, Mich. - With only a handful of faithful still on hand for the final event, Michigan State freshman Paul Terek shook off exhaustion to break the Spartan pole vault record to put an exclamation mark on the end of the Michigan Intercollegiate Championships, held Friday night at Jenison Field House.

Terek and fellow MSU frosh Jake Diner staged a classic pole vault dual, as each reached career bests. Terek, who was not expected to compete in the event after spending nearly eight hours competing in his first collegiate heptathlon, came on to prove the difference in the standings for the Spartans, as his first-place vault moved Michigan State one point ahead of Central Michigan for fourth place. 13th-ranked Eastern Michigan took their second straight Michigan Intercollegiate title, compiling 167 points. Western Michigan took second with 109 points, followed by Michigan with 104.

Terek's bound of 17' 0 _" broke his own MSU pole vault mark of 16' 9 _", set during his collegiate debut on Jan. 17. That snapped the 30-year old record of 16'4" held by Roland Carter since 1968. Diner also made a strong impact, establishing his career-best with a vault of 16' 6 _". A third MSU freshman vaulter, Matt Deering, picked up two pivotal points with a mark of 15' 7", as the pole vault event finished nearly an hour after the last running event had finished up. Most of the athletes and fans had already left when Terek stole the show.

"I had just told Paul not to vault (after his effort in the heptathalon), but I look up and he's doing it. I'm proud of him - that's Paul. It's a great way to end the meet and hopefully this leads to something better," stated delighted MSU Head Coach Darroll Gatson, who was spotted embracing Terek following his record-breaking vault.

Eastern Michigan's dominance should not be overlooked, however, as the Eagles picked up points in 17 of the meet's 18 events, as they finished with a 58-point margin over second-place Western Michigan. EMU seized double-digit point totals in ten events, including a decisive 24 in the 400 meters, which moved them out of second place and into a commanding lead, which they never relinquished. The Eagles' David Seaborne snapped the Jenison Field House record in the weight throw with a toss of 62' 3 _".

Terek and Diner grabbed the spotlight, but a few Spartan performers proved to be a tremendous supporting cast. Senior Octavis Long grabbed his second straight 55-meter dash title, as he edged out the field in a time of 6.37 seconds, just .01 ahead of runner-up Steve Jenkins from Michigan. The MSU distance medley relay team took top honors as the quartet of Jeff Ferrell, Jason Coulter, Ryan Taylor and Joe Leo broke the tape in that event at 10:00.88, the fastest time in the Big Ten this season

"We were experimenting, trying to see how guys would perform in different events, to see where we stood. In doing so, we are going to take our lumps, but we learned quite a bit in doing so," stated Gatson. "It was an up-and-down meet, and we'll do a lot better once a few of our guys get back from injuries."

A pair of Spartans also picked up 14 points in the mile, as Chris Wehrman (4:12.75) and Steve Schell (4:13.27) finished second and third, respectively. Other Spartan contributors included sophomore Okoineme Giwa-Agbomeirele in the long jump, as he took second with a bound of 22' 8 _". Matt Lafave took third in the 5k, clocking in at 15:03.67, while Mark Goodfellow (8:41.51) and Jason Kokoczka (8:44.62) finished fourth and fifth, respectively in the 3,000.

Michigan Intercollegiate Championships

INDIVIDUAL CHAMPIONS
Weight Throw            David Seaborne, EMU     62' 3 _"
Pole Vault              Paul Terek, MSU         17' 0 _"
Long Jump               Aaron Oaks, WMU         23' 9 _"
Shot Put                Joe Lewandowski, WMU    55' 3 _"
High Jump               James Nieto, EMU        6' 11 _"
Triple Jump             Samuel Okantey, CMU     50' 1 _"
55-meter hurdles        Greg Richardson, CMU    7.46
55-meter dash           Octavis Long, MSU       6.37
200 meters              Clement Chukwu, EMU     21.76
400 meters              Clement Chukwu, EMU     48.83
600 meters              Jeff Delong, CMU        1:20.52
800 meters              Derrick Jackson, EMU    1:50.96
Mile                    John Mortimer, UM       4:09.65
3,000 meters            John Mortimer, UM       8:37.58
5,000 meters            Clint Verran, EMU       15: 02.13
4x400 relay             Eastern Michigan        3:17.64
Distance Medley Relay   Michigan State          10:00.88