Track: Strong After First Day in Ohio

  • By Daniel Whitehead
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  • April 13, 2012 10:24 PM
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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Multiple WVU athletes earned career-best times and league-qualifying marks Friday for a strong opening to the 2012 Jesse Owens Classic in Columbus, Ohio.

Redshirt sophomore Sarah Martinelli led the team with a solid performance in the 1,500-meter run by placing fourth in a career-best 4:31.76, a re-qualifying mark as she had already earned league rights for the event from the Raleigh Relays. The time was also second-best for the team this season in the 1,500-meter run.

Josie Crouch and Hallie Portner also earned BIG EAST-qualifying marks in the 1,500-meter as Crouch placed 15th in 4:37.61 and Portner placed 16th in a career-best 4:37.72. Jordan Hamric arrived just past the qualifying time of 4:38.44, while Letitia Propst (23rd, 4:40.90) and Sarah McCauley (unattached) also had strong performances in the event.

"The 1,500-meter run turned out to be a very strong event for us," says WVU coach Sean Cleary. "The girls continue to improve. Every time Josie and Letitia have competed this spring, they have dropped their times. The big run for us was from Hallie as she smashed her lifetime best to qualify for BIG EAST."

In the discus throw, Heather Adams placed ninth with a distance of 45.11 meters, a league re-qualifying mark for the junior as she easily surpassed the 40-meter requirement. Competing in her first meet since the WVU Holiday Classic to start the indoor season, freshman Karissa Knabenshue earned a BIG EAST distance of 41.61 meters to place 24th in the event.

"I am pleased with how Karissa came out and competed today," Cleary says. "The coaching staff decided to bring her out of a redshirt and she responded with a BIG EAST qualifier. Adams has been throwing well all season. As she spends more time with the discus we will see her put up some big numbers."

Redshirt junior Aubrey Moskal competed in the 3,000-meter steeplechase but did not finish.

Saturday’s Jesse Owens Classic events begin with the pole vault at 10:30 a.m. and end with the 4x400 relay at 3:30 p.m.


WVU track and field