Women's Track and Field preview: NCAA West Preliminary Rounds
May 25, 2010
TEXAS TO HOST WEST PRELIMINARY MEET ... The University of Texas Women's Track and Field will host the 2010 NCAA West Preliminary Rounds from Thursday-Saturday, May 27-29 out at Mike A. Myers Track Stadium. Live web streaming and results can be found on TexasSports.com. The meet will feature the nation's top athletes in the west region, as determined by the NCAA. The meet will also determine the field for the 2010 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, held at Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore., June 9-12.
HORNS LOOK TO EXTEND OUTDOOR SUCCESS ... UT's women's track and field team has claimed four outdoor NCAA titles (2005, 1999, 1998, 1986) and have finished in the top 10 in 15 of the last 16 years. Texas posted a fifth-place finish in 2009 after two individuals and one relay brought home three titles (100m, high jump, 4x400m) and a third place finish in the 200m.
COMPETING FOR THE HORNS ... A group of 12 Longhorns will compete in 10 events at the three-day meet this weekend (west ranking in parenthesis): 400m - Stacey-Ann Smith (10), Alicia Peterson (19); 5,000m - Mia Behm (7), Betzy Jimenez (18); 10,000m - Allison Mendez (44); 400m hurdles - Angele Cooper (1); High Jump - Victoria Lucas (9), Beverly Owoyele (47); Long Jump - Chantel Malone (7); Triple Jump - Chantel Malone (18); Shot Put - Jordyn Brown (7), Amanda Van Dyke (24); Discus - Okwukwe Okolie (36); Hammer Throw - Jordyn Brown (28).
COOPER BREAKING OUT ... Sophomore Angele Cooper is using the experience gained from a freshman season that included a trip to the NCAA Outdoor Championship semifinals in the 400m hurdles to build on this season's performances. She currently holds the top mark in the event (56.52) in the West region and is ranked fifth nationally. At the Big 12 Championships, Cooper brought home second and third place finishes in the 400m hurdles and 400m, respectively, along with running a leg of the Horns' second place 4x400m relay.
MALONE COMPLETES SWEEP ... With her 2010 Big 12 Outdoor Long Jump title, junior Chantel Malone became the fifth athlete in Big 12 history to sweep the league's long jump crowns in the same year. Malone posted a leap of 21-0.5 (6.41m), tying her PR, for her first individual outdoor title and to become the first Horn to win the event since Marshevet Hooker in 2006. The junior is in the midst of her most successful season at UT as she currently ranks seventh in the west region and ninth overall in the event. During the indoor season she earned her first individual All-American honor with her seventh-place showing and recorded the second-best leap in UT history of 21-4.25 (6.51m) to win the indoor league title, snapping a 13-year old meet record.
RELAY LOOKS TO REPEAT ... With the NCAA Championships starting at the West meet, so is the Longhorns' run to their second-straight 4x400m national title. Texas returns three of the four legs from last year's mile relay that brought home the national crown for the first time since 2005. Sophomores Judy Nwosu, Angele Cooper and junior Chantel Malone are all back for the Horns along with the addition of freshman Alicia Peterson. Texas currently has the sixth fastest time in the nation this outdoor season.
SMITH AND PETERSON HOLD DOWN 400m ... Sophomore Stacey-Ann Smith and freshman Alicia Peterson will be looking to join an elite group of Texas quartermilers this weekend if they advance to the NCAA Outdoor Championship. Texas owns four 400m national titles, more than any other school in NCAA history. Smith currently has the 10th fastest time in the region and recently placed second at the Big 12 meet, while Peterson is ranked 19th and posted a fifth-place finish at the league championship.
LUCAS WINS BIG 12 TITLE ... Sophomore Victoria Lucas became the second-straight Longhorn to win the Big 12 Outdoor High Jump Title with her winning clearance of 5-8.75 (1.75m) in Columbia, Mo., last weekend. Lucas helped UT extend it's league-leading outdoor high jump crowns to seven. The sophomore was also part of a UT trio that racked up 22 points in the event. Freshman Alicia Peterson, who hadn't high jumped since high school, finished second and sophomore Beverly Owoyele placed fifth.
BEHM SHINES AT STANFORD ... Sophomore distance specialist Mia Behm is making the most of her second year on the Forty Acres as she recently posted the fastest 5K time at UT since 1988 with her 16-minute-flat effort at the Payton Jordan Invite in California. Behm took 24.11 seconds off of her previous personal best and her time is just 14 seconds off of the UT record of 15:46. Behm followed up her Stanford performance with a fifth place finish at the Big 12 Championship with a time of 16:20.44.