Walnut, Calif. - The University of Arizona Wildcat No. 14 men's and No. 13 women's track and field teams wrapped up competition at the Mt. SAC Relays on Saturday. Arizona won two events, set a school record and had three athletes meet the Olympic "A" Standard on the day.
Junior Georganne Moline won the women's invitational elite 400-meter hurdles with a personal-best time of 55.25. Moline broke her own school record of 56.02; she set that record at the Jim Click Shootout on March 31, 2012. She now holds the No. 1 collegiate time in the country, the No. 2 time in the world and her time meets the Olympic "A" Standard. The required time was 55.50.
"It was more so just listening to Coach Harvey and doing what he told me to do," Moline said. "I really just went out there and treated it like a practice. I went out of my comfort zone a little bit and went for it and it ended up working in my favor. I'm feeling so much more confident, this is the race that I needed to do well on, I've been a bit insecure on whether I could do it. Today, I just went out there trying to beat people and I'm definitely confident going into the double dual and the Pac-12 Championships. (To meet the Olympic "A" Standard) It's relieving, now I can run for fun and just run to get a better time, I don't have any pressure and it feels good."
"Georganne (Moline) had one of those great performances that you see people train weeks and years for," head coach Fred Harvey said. "We new she could do it and it was just really great to see her get it done."
Junior Alyssa Hasslen competed in the women's invitational elite shot put and earned a second-place finish. Hasslen threw a personal-best mark of 60-2.5 (18.35m). That throw is the No. 1 collegiate mark this year and the No. 2 mark in school history. It is also the 13th-best throw in NCAA history. Hasslen's throw also meets the Olympic "A" Standard. The mark to beat was 60-0.5 (18.30m). Volunteer assistant Jill Camarena-Williams won the competition with a throw of 64-11.5 (19.80m).
"It went really well," Hasslen said. "At first, I started off rocky and I was pretty nervous going into it. But, I just wanted to get mark good enough for the finals. From the finals, I just relaxed and let go. (Throwing the Olympic "A" Standard) It makes me feel really good. To be No.1 in the nation right now is really awesome, it hasn't hit me yet. I'm just really excited."
Junior Brigetta Barrett won the women's invitational elite high jump. After a lengthy jump-off, Barrett finally captured the victory. Her best clearance was 6-4.75 (1.95m), marking the second time she has cleared that height this season. It remains the top mark in the country and is tied for the top mark in the world. It also meets the Olympic "A" Standard.
"I felt like I was really tested today," Barrett said. "I had my first jump-off, it was really exciting but it was the longest I've ever jumped under that kind of pressure. It was cool to see how I handle it because there were times when I did want to give up. I don't know what clicked within me but I said `no, after this long of jumping I'm not about to just hand it over to her. So that gave me the inspiration to just calm down and do what I had been doing on all the other jumps to win it."
In the men's high jump, junior Edgar Rivera-Morales earned a second-place finish, clearing 7-4.50 (2.25m). Junior Nick Ross had a personal-best clearance of 7-4.50 (2.25m), but finished in fifth place because of his amount of jumps. Ross and Rivera-Morales are both tied for the second-best collegiate mark in the country.
Sophomore Shapri Romero and senior Echos Blevins competed in the women's olympic development 400-meter run. Romero had a time of 53.76, good for third place. Blevins had a time of 54.36, earning a fourth-place finish. Junior James Eichberger earned a ninth-place finish in the men's olympic development 800 meters, clocking a time of 1:48.40. For the men's 4x100-meter relay, UA was represented by freshman Thomas Moronta, junior Chris McSwain, freshman Garic Wharton and sophomore Sean Delfani. They clocked a season-best time of 40.81, good for fifth place.
"Overall, we had some really high-level performances," Harvey said. "We want everybody to excel, we had some who didn't but then we had Alyssa (Hasslen) in the shot put and Taylor (Bush) set the school record in the hammer, Georganne (Moline) set a school record and the male high jumpers both cleared 7-4.50 (2.25m). It was a heck of a meet for us. I'm excited for all of our athletes and I think it bodes really well for us going forward."
Arizona alumnus Luis Rivera-Morales, brother of Edgar Rivera-Morales competed for Mexico in the men's invitational elite long jump. He won with a jump of 26-11.75 (8.22m), which is the No. 2 mark in the world. His mark also meets the Olympic "A" Standard. Former UA All-American Christina Rodgers has a time of 2:05.26 in the women's olympic development 800 meters, good for sixth place.
Arizona will return to the track to host the Arizona/Arizona State/NAU Double Dual on April 28 at Roy P. Drachman Stadium.