Jan. 14, 2006
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- The University of New Mexico, Adams State College and several hundred Albuquerque track and field enthusiasts got the city's 2006 indoor track schedule off to a rousing start today in the Mark Shumate Open all-comers meet at the Albuquerque Convention Center. Competitors from ages 6 to 86 enjoyed the first of three all-comer meets that will be held at the facility this winter. Next Saturday (Jan. 21), UNM welcomes 11 teams to Convention Center for what is expected to be one of the best collegiate indoor track meets in the country, the Modrall Sperling Lobo Invitational.
Arizona, BYU, Cal, Colorado State, Florida State, LSU, Portland State, Rice, Southern Cal, Texas A&M and UTEP will comprise the field of the Modrall Sperling Lobo Invite, the first collegiate-only indoor meet in the Duke City since 1987. Eight of the 12 teams had either their men's or women's teams finish among the top-25 at the NCAA Indoor or Outdoor Championships last year. Seven returning individual national champions and the LSU men's champion 4x400-meter relay team are scheduled to compete. There is also a growing buzz about Florida State standout sophomore Ricardo Chambers, a 44.87 400-meter runner outdoors who could challenge NCAA (45.35) and even world (44.63) indoor records in the event.
The Modrall Sperling Lobo Invite gets underway at 9 a.m. with the first running event to start at 10:30. Tickets at door are $3 for adults, $2 for students and free for ages 5 and under.
Several Lobos turned in strong performances in their 2006 season debuts today at the Shumate Open. In one of the marquee events of the day, New Mexico's Derek Mackel (17'), Robert Caldwell (17') and Zach Bingham (16') finished 1-2-3 in the men's pole vault with Caldwell and Bingham both establishing indoor bests. Mackel and Caldwell just missed the NCAA provisional qualifying standard in the event before bowing out at 17-06.00.
Elsewhere in the field events, freshman Stuart St. Louis won the high jump with a leap of 6-08.00, while sophomore Domnick Meadows swept the long jump (22-06.25) and triple jump (45-03.00). Junior Gary Hoodless bested a shot put field that included world masters champion and current president of the UNM Board of Regents Jamie Koch, with a PR mark of 48-11.75. Meanwhile, redshirt freshman Tiyana Peters won the high jump (5-06.00) in her indoor debut and junior pentathlete Stefany Setliff cleared 11-00.25 to win her first collegiate pole vault competition. UNM swept the women's throwing events with senior Jamie Fishencord taking the weight throw (52-05.25) and rookie Briana Paxton winning the shot put (39-09.75).
Junior Jeremy Johnson led the Lobos on the track, clocking a solid altitude adjusted time of 8:24.72 to win the 3,000 and finishing second in the mile (4:17.02), behind Notre Dame's Thomas Chamney. Elsewhere, senior Timmie Murphy won the women's 3K (adjusted 10:45.52), sophomore Kristan Matison captured the 200 (25.51) and Setliff was a double winner, taking the 60-meter hurdles (adjusted 9.69) as well.