Saturday, December 11, 2010

Osuji, Sohl lead Grizzlies with event wins at indoor track & field season opener

Sprinters, field eventers kick off season for the defending indoor RMAC, national champions

GOLDEN, Colo. - Represented largely by field athletes and sprinters, the Grizzlies kicked off their 2010-11 indoor track & field season on Friday at the Colorado Mines Alumni Extrvaganza, where Adams State throwers recorded a 1-2-3 sweep in the weight throw and placed four in the top six of the shot put.

The Grizzlies, defending indoor Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) and NCAA Division II champs, gave their distance runners a rest following the late ending of the cross country season, and were represented by just one runner in distances over 300 meters. No team scores were kept at the meet.

Adams State had a pair of event champions, as senior Blair Sohl (San Antonio, Texas) won the pole vault and redshirt freshman Frank Osuji (Fountain, Colo.) took the win the weight throw.

Sohl, the defending RMAC indoor and outdoor pole vault champion, started off at his eventual winning height of 4.50 meters (14 feet, 9 inches), clearing the height on his second attempt to top his closest competition by nearly six inches.

Osuji recorded his winning mark on his final throw of the day. After fouling on his first three attempts, he uncorked a throw of 15.91 meters (52'2 ˝") on his fourth attempt, outdistancing his nearest competition, junior teammate Brady Schreibvogel (Keenesburg, Colo.), by more than two-and-a-half feet.

Schreibvogel, who recorded ASC's lone runner-up finish of the day, had his best throw of the day on his final attempt as well for a distance of 15.15 meters (49'8 ˝"). And rounding out the Grizzly 1-2-3 sweep was redshirt freshman Wesley Lavong (Philsdelphia, Pa.) whose throw of 14.40 meters (47'3") came on his third attempt.

In the shot put, Lavong recorded his second third-place finish of the day with a heave of 17.92 meters (58'9 ˝"). ASC followed in places 4-6, as sophomore Miquel Narez (Swink, Colo.), a seventh-place finisher at last year's RMAC indoor championships in the shot put, took fourth in the shot with a mark of 14.48 meters (47'6 ź"). Narez also recorded a fifth place finish in the weight throw Friday with a toss of 13.98 meters (45'10 ˝").

Osuji took fifth in the shot put at 14.30 meters (47'6 ź") and Schreibvogel sixth at 14.01 meters (45'11 ž").

Competing unattched, ASC alum and throws coach John Ybarra won the shot put with a toss of 19.31 meters (63'4 ź"), and new personal best and a distance which would have placed seventh at the last year's USA Track & Field (USATF) indoor championships.  It also allowed him to break the facility record.

ASC sprinters took third-place finishes in the 60-meter hurdles, 60-meter dash and 300 meters.

Sophomore Alfred Hines, Jr. (Long Beach, Calif.) led a pair of ASC top-five finishers in the 60 meter hurdles, crossing the line in 8.31 seconds (8.33-altitude adjusted) for third, while junior Pierce Fair (Aurora, Colo.), who was runner-up at the 2010 RMAC indoor meet, was close behind with a finishing time of 8.66 seconds (8.68-adjusted) in fifth.

In the 60 meter dash, it was junior Calvin Fletcher (Indianapolis, Ind.) who led a hefty Grizzly contingent with a third-place finish with a time of 6.98 seconds (7.00-adjusted). Senior James Douglas (Parker, Colo.), competing unattached and without indoor eligibility remaining, posted the fastest 60-meter time of the day with a clocking of 6.89 seconds.

The top Grizzly finisher in the 300 meter dash, junior Justin Cropper (Fountain, Colo.), who took third in a time of 36.57 seconds.  Cropper placed fifth in the 200-meter dash at last season's league indoor championships.

Redshirt freshman Jordan Bolich (Santa Fe, N.M.) also notched a third-place showing, clearing 1.99 meters (6'6 ˝") in the high jump, ahead of twin-brother Devin Bolich (Santa Fe, N.M.) who took fifth in with a clearance of 1.89 meters (6'2 ˝").

A preseason all-RMAC pick, sophomore Dyson Mortensen (La Jara, Colo.), who placed second at RMAC indoors in the high jump last year and took fifth in the event at nationals, competed unattached on Friday and won the high jump at 2.15 meters (7' 0 ž"), 1 ź" inches better than the height he cleared at the Division II indoor national championships in March. Had Mortensen been competing for the team, the height would have been an automatic qualifier for the NCAA Division II indoor championships.

Fair would also lead a Grizzly 4-5 finish in the long jump. He soared to a mark of 6.65 meters (21'10"), while freshman teammate Alex Estes (Yampa, Colo.) was not far back with a distance of 6.56 meters (21'6 ź").

In the 600 meters, the longest event of the meet for the ASC men's squad, sophomore Marcus Vargas (Flagstaff, Ariz.) came across the line in fifth place in a time of 2:47.12.

The Colorado Mines Alumni Extravaganza will be the lone meet for the Grizzlies before the calendar flips into the new year. ASC will have a lengthy break before returning to action at the University of New Mexico hosted Cherry & Silver Invitational on Jan. 22 in Albuquerque, N.M.

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