April 14, 2012
COLUMBUS, OHIO – Despite rainy, inclement weather, the Michigan State Track and Field team were able find success in nearly event – from the pole vault to the 1500 meters – as they closed action this weekend at the Jesse Owens Classic.
The throwing teams continue to show why they are amongst the best in nation, with Beth Rohl and Lonnie Pugh adding additional victories to their impressive collegiate careers. Rohl dominated the women’s discus with a toss of 51.26 meters, while Pugh took care of business in the men’s discus with a field-leading effort of 56.98 meters. Rohl also took fifth in the hammer throw, reaching 57.48 in her best attempt.
Not far behind in the discus was Antonio James who finished with a new personal record of 53.59 meters.
Tori Franklin - who enjoyed a record-shattering indoor season - inched closer to Michigan State’s outdoor record in the women’s triple jump, finishing in first place with a leap of 12.20 meters.
Junior Derik Peterman had a career day for MSU, tying three other competitors for first place in the pole vault. 5.05 meters was the highest mark met by Peterman, Heath Nickles and Cody Marshall of Ohio State, and Max Babits of Eastern Michigan.
Women’s distance put forth another strong showing for the green and white. In the women’s 1500 meters, Sara Kroll was Michigan State’s top performer with a first-place time of 4:25.65. Teammate Leah O’Connor clocked in less than two seconds later at 4:27.35 for second, while true freshman Lindsay Clark – competing unattached - placed fifth at 4:31.78.
The trend continued in the women’s 5000 meters where a host of Spartans filled the top ten. Senior Carlie Green was the leader for MSU, placing second with 16:38.09, while a split-second behind was Katie Haines who ran a new personal best with a final time of 16:39.90. Julia Otwell followed moments later in fourth at 16:50, and senior Rebekah Smeltzer rounded out the sub-17 group in fifth at 16:52.
Rounding out distance was Tiffany Evans who placed second with a final time of 10:38.82 in the steeplechase.
Men’s distance saw two standout performances from David Madrigal and Josh McAlary.
McAlary almost earned the victory in the men’s 1500 meters, placing a fraction of second behind Ian Boyle at 3:45.55. Boyle, a former Michigan State runner who graduated in 2010, now competes post-collegiately.
Madrigal found similar success with a new career best in the men’s 5000 meter run, nearly breaking the 14-minute barrier with a second-place finish of 14:02.54. Placing fifth in the event for the Spartans was Alex Wilson who also earned a new best with 14:15.
A few personal bests were also achieved for members of the sprints squad.
Alicia Evans placed second with a new PR of 24.42 in the women’s 200 meter dash, while fellow sprinter TeJuanna Williams followed in third with 24.56. Alysson Bodenbach continued her break out season with a third-place and personal best 53.89 in the women’s 400 meters.
Other top performers in the sprint events were Leslie Arirguzo, who ran for fourth in the women’s 100 meter hurdles with a final time of 13.88 and Jaelynn Pryor, a third-place finisher at 59.93 in the women’s 400 meter hurdles.
Two Spartans tied for second place in the men’s high jump, with juniors Kevin Jackson and Kurt Schneider leaping 2.00 meters.
Amanda Impellizzeri and Sarah Birkmeier were top five performers for MSU in the pole vault. Impellizzeri was third at 3.85 meters and teammate Birkmeier tied for fifth, covering the bar at 3.70 meters.