Flagstaff, Ariz. - The University of Arizona Wildcat No. 9 men's and No. 12 women's track and field teams made their 2013 debut on Saturday, competing at the Lumberjack Invitational in Flagstaff, Ariz. The meet was held at Northern Arizona's J.L. Walkup Skydome. The Wildcats claimed victories in five different events on the day.
Junior Alyssa Hasslen earned a first-place finish in the women's shot put with a mark of 54-7.5 (16.65m). That is the third-best mark of her indoor career. Senior Omotayo Talabi posted an indoor personal-best mark of 50-9.5 (15.48m), good for third place. Senior Taylor Freeman had a toss of 45-1.5 (13.75m), good for seventh place. Junior Amber Passalaqua posted a mark of 33-9.5 (10.30m), an indoor personal best for the pentathlete. Freeman also competed in the women's weight throw; she took second place and posted a personal-best mark of 61-7.75 (18.79m).
In the men's high jump competition, Edgar Rivera-Morales won the men's high jump competition with a clearance of 7-3 (2.21m). That clearance is the fifth time Rivera-Morales has cleared 7-3 or better in his career. Freshman Jonny Giess had a clearance of 6-10.25 (2.09m), good for third place. On the women's side, sophomore Shakayla McEaddy won the women's high jump competition with a clearance of 5-6 (1.68m), that clearance ties the second-best mark of her indoor career.
In the women's 60-meter dash, all four Wildcats advanced to the final of the event. Junior Shapri Romero clocked a time of 7.59 in her first time competing in the event. Junior Germe Poston posted a time of 7.64. Senior Georganne Moline also made her debut in the event, clocking a time of 7.64 as well. Junior Tamara Pridgett advanced with a time of 7.67. In the final, Poston took third place with a time of 7.51, an indoor personal best. Pridgett's time of 7.61 was good for fourth place. Romero came in fifth place, posting a time of 7.69. Moline did not compete in the final. Romero also ran the 200 meters and won with a time of 24.27. Pridgett took fifth with a time of 25.12. Freshman Traci-Lynn Hicks clocked a time of 25.33, good for seventh. Junior Shale' Garland's time of 25.46 was good for 10th place.
Sophomore Lezo Urreiztieta and junior Darien McKinley advanced to the final of the 60-meter hurdles. In the preliminaries, Urreiztieta clocked a time of 8.41 and McKinley posted a personal-best time of 8.67. In the final, Urreiztieta won with a personal-best time of 8.18. McKinley finished in seventh place, clocking a time of 8.51. Freshman Bernard Dickerson-Quinn took fourth place overall in the 400-meter dash with a time of 48.53. Senior Clifton Leake finished in fifth place, posting a time of 48.60. The women's 4x400-meter relay quartet of Pridgett, sophomore Taylor Cole, Moline and Poston took third place with a time of 3:52.10.
"I'm very pleased with a lot of the performances that we had today," head coach Fred Harvey said. "The thing I wanted to see in this competition is how we were going to compete. We know we have the talent it's just a matter of coming out day in and day out and being able to compete at the highest level. We did that for the most part. We didn't have super marks but we have so many other things that these kids can accomplish that we are working towards. We looked good and I think we're off to a very successful start."
Arizona will return to the track for the Razorback Invitational on January 25-26 in Fayetteville, Ark.