May 12, 2013
Los Angeles, Calif. - The University of Arizona Wildcat men's and No. 5 women's track and field teams concluded the Pac-12 Championships on Sunday. The meet was being held at USC's Cromwell Field and Katherine B. Loker Stadium. The Wildcats earned two individual titles on the day. The women finished in second place and the men earned a seventh-place finish.
On the women's side, Oregon won their fifth-straight title with 139 points. Arizona had 123 points in second. Arizona State finished in third place with 110.33 points. UCLA's 87.33 points were good for fourth place. Stanford took fifth place with 86.50 points. The UA women earned a point in the Territorial Cup for finishing ahead of Arizona State.
For the men, Oregon won their seventh-straight title with 149.50 points. USC's total of 108 points was good for a runner-up finish. UCLA took third place after scoring 98.50 points. Arizona State had 94 points in fourth place. Washington finished in fifth place with 76 points. Arizona's 67 points was good for a seventh-place finish. Arizona State claimed a point in the Territorial Cup after finishing ahead of the UA men.
Junior Lawi Lalang won the 1,500-meter race for the second-straight year with a time of 3:38.53. That time is the second-best of his career and was a meet record. Rudy Chapa of Oregon ran 3:38.7 in 1979 previously held the record. He has finished in first or second place all three years of his career at the conference championships. In the women's 5K, senior Jen Bergman earned a third-place finish with a time of 16:16.95. It is the third time she's earned all-conference honors in the event and the third-straight year she has earned all-conference honors in both the 5K and 10K. Freshman Nicci Corbin clocked a time of 16:33.42 and finished in fourth place. On the men's side, sophomore Sam Macaluso earned a sixth-place finish with a time of 14:13.00.
"The race felt alright," Lalang said. "It went the way I wanted it to. I wanted to go for it from the gun and that's what I did. (Yesterday's 10K) felt alright, at first the plan was to go slow but after going over it, I felt I was in really good shape to go fast and that's what I did. It felt good."
In the women's discus, Arizona added 21 points to the women's team total with all four throwers scoring. Junior Julie Labonté earned a runner-up finish with a personal-best toss of 186-4 (56.79m). That mark is No. 4 in UA history. Sophomore Baillie Gibson's season-best mark of 18-6 (55.01m) was good for third place overall. She earned all-conference honors in the hammer, shot put and discus and finished no worse than fifth place in any of them. It is the second time that Gibson has earned all-conference accolades in all three events. Senior Taylor Freeman scored four points for the women with a toss of 175-5 (53.47m), good for fifth place. It is the third time she has earned all-conference honors in the event. Senior Alyssa Hasslen finished in sixth place with a toss of 170-9 (52.05m). Hasslen earned all-conference honors in the shot put and the discus all four years of her career.
Senior Edgar Rivera-Morales won his first conference title in the high jump with a clearance of 7-3.75 (2.23m). Arizona has won the last three high jump titles at the Pac-10/12 Championships. The Wildcats have had an all-conference performer in the event each year dating back to 2007.
"I felt really good, it was a fun meet," Rivera-Morales said. "It was a tough meet, overall but I'm happy because this is my last year and it was my first title so it was a really good way to finish."
Senior Georganne Moline earned a runner-up finish in the 400-meter hurdles with a season-best time of 54.54. That time is No. 2 in the world this year. It is the fourth time in her career that Moline has earned All-Pac-10/12 accolades in the event. On the men's side of the 400-meter hurdles, senior Clifton Leake ran the second-best time of his career, 51.12 and grabbed third place. He earned All-Pac-12 honors in the event for the first time of his career.
Junior Shapri Romero earned a third-place finish in the 400-meter final with a time of 52.40. That time is the second-best time of her career. It is the second time that Romero has earned all-conference honors in the event. This marks the fourth-straight year that a Wildcat has earned all-conference honors in the women's 400 meters. On the men's side, freshman Bernard Dickerson-Quinn took fourth place with a personal-best time of 46.30. That time is seventh in UA history. Junior Sean Delfani's time of 47.68 was good for seventh place. The pair of Wildcats are the first to earn all-conference honors in the men's 400 meters since Bobby McCoy in 2008.
The women's 4x400-meter relay of Romero, senior Shale' Garland, junior Tamara Pridgett and Moline finished in third place. They clocked a time of 3:32.57, the second-best time of the season for the quartet. The men's 4x400-meter relay grabbed third place with a season-best time of 3:08.20. The Wildcats ran Delfani, Leake, senior James Eichberger and Dickerson-Quinn.
Senior Tyler Johnson's season-best toss of 207-4 (63.19m) was good for fourth place in the hammer throw competition. It is the third-straight year that Johnson has earned all-conference honors in the event.
Eichberger took third place in the final of the 800 meters with a time of 1:51.43. He earned all-conference honors in the event for the third time in his career. In the women's 1,500-meter race, Corbin and freshman Kate Penney both clocked personal-best times. Corbin finished in seventh place with a time of 4:20.05, the No. 4 time in UA history. Penney's time of 4:21.33 was good for ninth place and No. 6 in school history. Corbin earned all-conference honors in the 1,500 meters and the 5K.
Junior Germe Poston earned a sixth-place finish in the 100-meter dash with a time of 11.71. She is the first Wildcat to earn all-conference honors in the event since Marquita Taylor in 2007. Poston also ran the 200 meters and clocked a time of 23.85, good for eighth place. She is the first Wildcat to earn all-conference honors in the 200 meters since Marquita Taylor and Nikki Martin in 2007.
The quartet of freshman Traci-Lynn Hicks, Romero, Pridgett and Poston finished in fifth place in the 4x100-meter relay with a time of 45.28, adding four points to the women's total. The men's 4x100-meter relay team consisting of sophomore Thomas Moronta, Dickerson-Quinn, sophomore Mohammad Alhasan and Delfani finished in seventh place with a time of 41.28.
"I'm extremely pleased," head coach Fred Harvey said. "There's a sense of a let-down within my heart because I really wanted to win. I felt we really had an opportunity to do so if they made mistakes. We had the meet of a lifetime for our team, we were one point shy of what I thought we could score. It's a little bittersweet but we fought, it's Oregon and we had them on the ropes. We're continuing to grow, we have good, young talent and we're going to continue to be that force that people look at. Overall, happy with what we did, we did pretty much what I thought we would do and when you can leave a meet saying that, I think you've had a good two days."