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Track & field heads to Cal for Pac-10 Championships

May 12, 2010

Sun Devil Championship Notes and Statistics/Top Marks (pdf)

The Arizona State University track and field program will travel to Edwards Stadium on the California campus this weekend to conclude the 2010 Pac-10 Conference Championships that began last weekend with strong performances from five individual Sun Devils in the heptathlon and decathlon as team, individual and relay titles will be on the line this Saturday and Sunday in Berkeley, Calif.

Meet information: Pac-10
This weekend's action will mark the 80th men's and 24th women's championship events held by the Pac-10 Conference while the Sun Devils will be making their 30th appearance in the men's meet and their 22nd in the women's event (both teams did not enter the 1989 and 1997 Championships) since they joined the Pac-10 in time for the 1979 and 1987 meets, respectively. Historically, the Sun Devil men have won the Conference's crown once (1981) while the women won three in a row (2006, 2007, 2008).

Follow along
Live results for both weekends of the Pac-10 Championships are available on the web by visiting the following site: Fox Sports' regional network also will broadcast the Championships on a delay basis in the coming weeks (check your local listings for dates and times of the broadcasts).

Meet information: Cal hosts
California will be playing host to the Championships for the first time since 2001 with this year's meet marking the fourth time (did not compete in 1989) ASU has competed in the Pac-10 meet in Berkeley on the men's side and the third for the women. The men's best finish was a tie for second in 1983 (finished fourth in 2001 and sixth in 1993) while the women's best came in 1993 with a third-place showing (fifth in 2001). Overall, the Sun Devils have won 14 individual titles when the meet is held at Cal, including nine by the men and six by the women, while also adding three relay crowns with two won by the men and one by the women.

Last time at California (2001)
The last time the Championships were in Berkeley were in 2001 where the Sun Devil men placed fourth and the women were fifth overall. The men captured five total titles and the women two with both sides boasting one multiple individual champion. Marcus Brunson led the way for the men as he swept the 100m and 200m events while Tony Berrian took home the gold in the 400m dash and David Wood won the shot put. The men's 4x400m relay also was victorious. Kelly MacDonald was the lone champion for the Sun Devil women as she captured the 5,000m run and the 3,000m steeplechase, which was the first year the steeple event was contested at the Pac-10 meet.

Returning champions
Four Sun Devils return to the Pac-10 meet this year as defending champions, including two men and two women. On the men's side, Brandon Bethke is back to defend his 5,000m title (won in 13:52.73) while Ryan Whiting will look for back-to-back crowns in the shot put (won with a toss of 20.37m/66-10.00). Both men currently lead the Pac-10 with their top mark this season. On the women's side, Jasmine Chaney and Dominique' Maloy are back after helping the 4x100m relay to victory last year (44.10). That duo joined with a pair of departed seniors in Shauntel Elcock and Charonda Williams, who also won a pair of individual events in 2009 for the second year in a row.

Review: 2009 Pac-10
The women finished third and the men sixth last year at the Pac-10 Championships that were held in Eugene, Ore., while Oregon won both team titles. The women scored 112 points with UO (165.5) and Stanford (138) ahead of them while the men tallied 87 points with UO (158), USC (117) and SU (93) rounding out the Top 3. Along with the individual champions mentioned above, two other women won a pair of crowns each, including Sarah Stevens, who captured the shot put and discus, and Charonda Williams, who swept the 100m and 200m for the second year in a row.

Award winners
Based on the number of points scored in the meet, Sarah Stevens (28 points) was selected as the Pac-10 Women's Athlete of the Meet as she won the shot put and discus (10 points each) and was the runner-up in the hammer (8 points). That was not the only conference award handed out to an ASU woman as Stevens was also selected as the 2009 Pac-10 Female Field Athlete of the Year while Charonda Williams was named the 2009 Pac-10 Female Track Athlete of the Year. The duo was very instrumental in the team's success throughout the season, including the Pac-10 meet where they scored a combined 51.25 of the team's 112 points.

Already on the road
The heptathlon and decathlon were held last weekend with the Sun Devils placing individuals in the Top 8 of each event to score team points toward this weekend's meet. In the heptathlon, rookie Keia Pinnick (5,219 points) and junior Samantha Henderson (5,126 points) finished third and fourth, respectively, in their Pac-10 debuts to give the women 11 team points while sophomore Jamie Sandys (6,909 points) was the lone ASU man in the Top 8 as his fifth-place showing earned the team four points. Through one event, the women are second to Oregon (16 points) with UCLA (8), Washington State (5) and Stanford (1) also scoring while the men's standings have Oregon in the lead with 16 and being trailed by Washington (8), California (6), Arizona State (4), Washington State (3) and UCLA (2).

Personal best weekend: Multis
The five Sun Devils that competed in the multi-events last weekend all recorded several personal bests including their overall event scores and in several individual events. For the women, Keia Pinnick improved her lifetime best score by 166 points (5,219) while Samantha Henderson posted a 167-point improvement (5,126). On the men's side, Jamie Sandys improved by 522 points in the decathlon (6,909) and was 91 points from becoming the 10th Sun Devil to break 7,000 points in the event while ninth-place Austin Prince (6,515) and 10th-place Jeremy Marcinko (6,395) improved by 206 and 244 points, respectively. Including all events contested, scores from the first and second days and the overall score, the five Sun Devils combined to record 30 lifetime bests and 13 marks that bettered the all-time heptathlon/decathlon event records.

Record lists
While Sandys was just 44 points from joining the ASU all-time Top 10 list in the decathlon, both women in the heptathlon added their names to the all-time list with one woman etching her name in twice. In the overall heptathlon scoring, Keia Pinnick's score of 5,219 points ranks as the fourth-best score in program history and makes her the fifth Sun Devil to score 5,200 points or more in the event. Samantha Henderson's score of 5,126 points places her sixth on the all-time list while making her the sixth different Sun Devil to break 5,100 points. Pinnick also took over an event record as her time of 2:13.99 in the 800m run is the fastest recorded in the heptathlon in ASU history and bettered the previous record of 2:14.50 that Gea Johnson ran 30 years ago (1990).

Nationally known
According to the latest release of the National Top 25 rankings from the USTFCCCA, the Sun Devil men remain part of the Top 10 this week as they head to the Pac-10 Championships ranked No. 7 nationally while the women are unranked. The Top 4 men's teams are Texas A&M, Oregon, Florida and Texas Tech while the Top 4 women's teams include Texas A&M, LSU, Oregon and Oklahoma.

Tough field
Heading into the Pac-10 Championships, the Conference has five teams ranked in the men's national Top 25 and four women's teams holding the same distinction. The men's teams with national rankings include No. 2 Oregon, No. 6 USC, No. 7 Arizona State, No. 14 Stanford and No. 20 Washington while the women's teams are No. 3 Oregon, No. 12 USC, No. 16 UCLA and No. 20 Stanford. With those rankings, the Pac-10 has a combined nine of its 19 teams competing this weekend that are currently ranked among the Top 15 nationally.

Regionally known
The regional rankings, at least in the West, look like conference rankings as all seven teams in the men's and women's West Region rankings hail from the Pac-10. On the men's side, the West is No. 1 Oregon, No. 2 USC, No. 3 Arizona State, No. 4 Stanford, No. 5 UCLA, No. 6 Washington and No. 7 Washington State while the women's rankings are No. 1 Oregon, No. 2 USC, No. 3 Stanford, No. 4 Arizona, No. 5 Arizona State, No. 6 UCLA and No. 7 California.

Still leading
Two of the top men's shot put athletes in the world opened their outdoor season recently with Ryan Whiting still remaining ahead of them on the world lists in the event. Whiting's toss of 21.71m (71-02.75) at the 31st Sun Angel Track Classic continues to lead all marks recorded this year, is one of only two marks over 70-feet and is one of only four holders of a mark over 21-meters. Christian Cantwell, the 2010 indoor world champion, is just behind Whiting at 21.69m (71-02.00), a mark he attained at the Drake Relays, and Reese Hoffa, a two-time world champion, who is third in 21.14m (69-04.25).

Another lead sorts
Looking over the NCAA descending order lists in the men's throws, the Sun Devils once again hold a pair of distinctions over the rest of the nation. Following last weekend, seven men currently are ranked in the Top 25 in both the shot put and discus with only five schools represented. While four other schools have one man to join those ranks, the Sun Devils have three as Ryan Whiting (1st SP/11th DT), Jason Lewis (7th/4th) and Jordan Clarke (16th/20th) are all members of the Top 25 based upon their top mark this season. Additionally, Lewis holds a special distinction as he is the only man in the nation that ranks not only the Top 25, but the Top 10 in three throws as he also is 10th in the hammer.

Leaders of the Pac(-10)
Three marks currently lead the Pac-10 with Bethke (5,000m) and Whiting (shot put) leading individually and the team of Allante Battle, Ray Miller, Lawrence Trice and Michael Stokes leads in the 4x100m relay with a time of 39.60.

Solid combination
Heading into the Pac-10 Championships this weekend, the Sun Devil men currently hold the Top 3 spots in the shot put with Ryan Whiting leading (21.71m) and followed by Jason Lewis (18.87m) and Jordan Clarke (18.54m). The second-place ranking for Lewis is one of three he holds heading into the weekend (see below).

Closing in
Six total marks currently rank second in the Pac-10 with Jason Lewis leading the way as he is ranked second in the shot put, discus and hammer. Also on this list are Donald Sanford in the 400m (45.72) and the 4x400m relay of Sanford, Justin Kremer, Ray Miller and Joel Phillip (3:03.78) for the men. The women's list includes Constance Ezugha in the long jump (6.28m) and Jasmine Chaney in the 400m hurdles (58.01). Outside of the Top 2 places, the Sun Devils also have posted 31 marks/times that rank them third through 10th in the Conference heading into the Championships this weekend.

Bethke brings it
At the Mt. SAC Relays in Walnut, Calif., on April 17, Brandon Bethke competed in the invitational section of the men's 5,000m run and took fourth overall behind a trio of professional runners with a time of 13:27.83. That time, which was just 0.04 seconds off the school record he ran last year, remains one of the best in the world as it stands 18th once again this week. His mark also is the second-best time in the collegiate ranks behind only David McNeill of Northern Arizona, meaning the Top 2 times in the nation are from Arizona schools.

When looking over the Pac-10 lists, one Sun Devil's name continually appears as Jasmine Chaney holds times this season that rank her in the Top 8 in five individual events and as a member of both relays that are ranked in the Top 4 (seven total events). Individually, Chaney currently ranks third in the 100m dash (11.56) and the 400m hurdles (58.01); fourth in the 200m dash (23.44); fifth in the 100m hurdles (13.38); and eighth in the 400m dash (53.83). Chaney also is a member of the third-ranked 4x100m relay (44.96) and the fourth-ranked 4x400m relay (3:36.47), running the anchor leg of both.

More world marks
Bethke (5,000m) and Whiting (shot put) are not the only athletes with ties to the program that are currently ranked among the Top 20 on the world lists as two former men's and five former women's athletes are the charts following meets held last week. For the men, Dwight Phillips is second in the long jump with a mark of 8.32m, which is just one centimeter from the world lead, while Kyle Alcorn won the steeplechase at Stanford in 8:27.95 to record the second-best time in the world this year. On the women's side, Charonda Williams is ranked in two events, including the 100m (t-19th, 11.28) and the 200m (t-13th, 22.97); Latosha Wallace is 12th in the 400m hurdles (56.38); the duo of Desiree Davila (32:06.85) and Amy Hastings (32:28.77) stand seventh and 11th, respectively, in the 10,000m run and Sarah Stevens is 15th in the shot put (18.23m).

In the NCAA Top 10
Six marks currently rank in the Top 10 of the NCAA with all six coming from the men. On the track, Brandon Bethke ranks second in the 5,000m run (13:27.83) and the 4x400m relay of Justin Kremer, Ray Miller, Donald Sanford and Joel Phillip ranks fifth (3:03.78). In the field, Ryan Whiting leads the nation in the shot put (21.71m) while Jason Lewis is fourth in the discus (59.78m), seventh in the shot put (18.70m) and 10th in the hammer (67.07m).

Academic honors
On Wednesday (May 5), the NCAA released the names of 29 men and 29 women that were selected as a 2009-10 Postgraduate Scholarship Awardee with Sun Devils Jason Lewis and Ryan Whiting both being selected for the award. Both men will receive one-time grants to apply toward postgraduate studies. Lewis and Whiting were selected as they are student-athletes who excel academically and athletically and who are in their final year of intercollegiate athletics competition. Last year, Sarah Stevens earned the same award.

Double dual
The Sun Devils faced their intrastate rivals over the weekend in Tucson and walked away with three wins as the men swept Arizona (115-85) and Northern Arizona (132-47) while the women defeated NAU (127-63) and fell to UA (107-93). The men have now defeated NAU 13 years in a row and are 36-5-1 all-time against the Lumberjacks while the women have won 20 in a row with a 22-2-0 all-time record. Against the Wildcats, the men have defeated their rivals four years in a row and are now trailing 31-32-0 all-time while the women's loss to UA snapped a nine-year winning streak for ASU, but the Sun Devils still lead, 14-12-0.

Hand a broom
In the men's competition, there were 19 events contested and the Sun Devils won 11 of those events, including a clean sweep of all four throwing events and five of the seven sprint events at 400m or shorter. In the field, Jason Lewis took the top spot in the hammer (66.21m/217-3) and the discus (58.95m/193-5) while Ryan Whiting won the shot put with a Double Dual record toss (21.26m/69-09.00) and freshman Eddie McClain won the javelin with a personal-best toss (62.08m/203-08). On the track, Lawrence Trice won the 100m (10.39) and 200m (21.10), both with personal-best times, while Donald Sanford took the 400m dash (46.73) and Ian Caracciolo won the 400m hurdles (53.98). The final sprint victory came in the 4x400m relay with Justin Kremer, Ray Miller, Sanford and John Kline taking the top spot (3:10.16). Combining the men's wins with some from the women's side, ASU swept three events, including the 100m dash, the 400m dash and the 4x400m relay. For the women, Chaney took the 100m (11.76), Dominique' Maloy took the 400m (53.64) and both ran with Kayla Sanchez and Keia Pinnick to win the relay (3:36.47).

More victories
Along with wins mentioned above, ASU also won five other events, including two by the men and three by the women. For the men, Joe Fazio took the pole vault (4.91m/16-01.25) while Mason McHenry won the 800m run (1:48.91). On the women's side, Kauren Tarver won the steeplechase (10:29.36), Christabel Nettey won the long jump (6.28m/20-07.25) and the team of Maloy, Sanchez, Nettey and Cheney won the 4x100m relay (44.96).

Top performer - Lewis
While the men had many strong performances at the Double Dual, Jason Lewis' day stood out as the senior won a pair of events and took second in another with only his own teammate defeating him. On the day, Lewis won the hammer in 66.21m (217-3), which ranks as the third-best mark in the history of the Dual, before winning the discus with a toss of 58.95m (193-5), the fifth-best mark in Dual history. In the shot put, he took second to Ryan Whiting, the world leader in the event, with a personal-best toss of 18.70m (61-04.25), which stands as the ninth-best toss in Dual history.

Top performer - Chaney
Jasmine Chaney had another strong showing for the women over the weekend as she competed in five events on the day, winning three and placing second in the remaining two. Individually, Chaney won the 100m dash in 11.76 and took second in the 100m hurdles (13.38) and 400m hurdles (1:01.17) with her 100m hurdles time ranking as the third-best all-time in the history of the Double Dual. Chaney also was the anchor for both victorious relays, including the 4x100m (Maloy, Kayla Sanchez, Christabel Nettey) that ran a season-best 44.96 and the 4x400m (Maloy, Sanchez, Keia Pinnick) that ran a season-best 3:36.47, the third-best time in Dual history.

Top 10 dual marks
Along with marks attained by Lewis, Whiting, Chaney and the relays, five others were recorded that landed ASU on the Double Dual all-time Top 10. For the women, Dominique' Maloy is now 10th in the 400m dash (53.64); Kauren Tarver is fifth in the steeplechase (10:29.36); and Christabel Nettey is tied for eighth in the long jump (6.28m/20-07.25). The men also two more Top 10 marks: Lawrence Trice is third in the 100m dash (10.39) and Mason McHenry is sixth in the 800m run (1:48.91).

Academically sound
The Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) announced its annual list of MPSF All-Academic honorees for the indoor season with 13 Sun Devil men and eighth women named to the list. The men honored included Brandon Bethke, Ian Caracciolo, Ben Engelhardt, Kyle Fugit, Duggan Grant, Justin Kremer, Jason Lewis, Jeremy Marcinko, Mason McHenry, Jamie Sandys, Michael Stokes, Lawrence Trice and Ryan Whiting while the women's honorees included Courtney Golden, Ashley Lampley, Dominique' Maloy, Cherise McNair, Cj Navarro, Lisa Navarro, Lisa Nelson and Ashley Wimmer.

Sun Angel produces
At the 31st Sun Angel Track Classic, the action was outstanding as 23 different marks recorded in Tempe ranked among the Top 20 on the world lists this season with four of those marks recorded by former Sun Devil women and three total by current Sun Devils. On the track, Charonda Williams ran 11.34 in the 100m dash and 22.97 in the 200m dash to post a pair of Top 10 times, including the 10th-best in the 100m and the second-best in the 200m. Also on the track, meet honoree Desiree Davila clocked a personal-best time of 15:55.81 to run the 15th-best time in the world and also lower the meet and venue record in the 5,000m run. Sarah Stevens improved her standing on the world list to No. 10 in the shot put with her personal-best toss of 18.23m.

Returning champion
Heading into the outdoor season, one Sun Devil returns to competition as the defending national champion and that is Ryan Whiting in the men's shot put. The senior captured his first outdoor title last year in Fayetteville, Ark., and the middle of what is three in a row overall (2009 indoor, 2009 outdoor, 2010 indoor). Whiting won the competition with a heave of 20.11m (65-11.75) and gave him a sweep of the indoor and outdoor crowns, marking the 18th time in the past 45 years a man has accomplished the sweep. He is the 12th different man to do so and the first since 2007.

More on Whiting
With his indoor shot put championship back in March, Ryan Whiting now has four total NCAA titles in the event, including a three-peat in the indoor event and one outdoors. In the history of the shot put at the NCAA meets, Whiting is currently tied for fifth all-time with Carl Myerscough (Nebraska), who won two indoors and two outdoors, and a title outdoors this year for Whiting would move him into a three-way tie for third-most with Hans Hogland (UTEP) and Janus Roberts (SMU). Whiting concluded his indoor campaign with three titles, making him one of four men to win at least three in a career. Should he win the outdoor title this year, his two crowns would tie him 11 other men that won twice and make him the 19th man to win two or more in a career.

Next time out
While several Sun Devils will travel to Tucson on May 22 to compete in the Tucson Elite Throws Meet (marks do not count toward qualification for the NCAA meets), the next event for the program will be the NCAA Preliminary Rounds that will be held on May 28-29 in Austin, Texas, for the western schools. The meet at Texas will serve as the first and second rounds of the NCAA Championships that will be held in Eugene, Ore., June 6-9, with all athletes (except the heptathlon and decathlon) needing to advance through the event in Austin (or North Carolina for the east) to reach the semifinals and finals of the national event in June. Unlike years past, there are no wildcard and/or at-large selections to the national meet, meaning athletes will have to place in the Top 12 at the two regional sites to advance.