Mar 292009
 
Authors: Scott Callahan

The CSU track and field team was spread over three meets this weekend and came back with mixed results from each.

The Rob Upton Invitational, hosted by CSU, went ahead with good weather, despite the snowstorms late in the week. The other two meets the team took part in were at Arizona State and Stanford.

The Jack Christiansen Track, home field for CSU, was surrounded by snow and was less than ideal after Thursday night’s snowfall. But thanks to a hardworking grounds crew, the meet was able to continue only an hour behind schedule.

“Whoever paved the field deserves a pay raise, they did a great job out here,” redshirt thrower Cameron Carter said.

The Rams had wins in five individual events, including the long jump (Michelle Roberts, 5.21 meters), the women’s triple jump (Olivia Downing, 10.87 meters), the men’s triple jump (Travis Smith, 13.78 meters), the high jump (Caston Mabin, 6-feet-6.75) and the steeplechase (Spenser Lynass, 9:51.03).

Despite the colder weather, the home meet was a good opportunity for parents to show their support and parents from all of the in-state schools were in attendance. Alumni were also in the stands on Saturday afternoon showing support for their alma mater.

“CSU is such a great throwing program, it has a tradition of great throwers and we are very privileged to be here,” said Kris Lettow, a former weight thrower for CSU and father of sophomore weight thrower Ian Lettow.

Head coach Bryan Bedard, who stayed in Fort Collins for the home meet, said the meet was a good chance for the younger and less experienced athletes to get in a low-key meet and get their feet on the ground for the outdoor season.

One of the younger athletes is freshman Caston Mabin, who did more the get his feet on the ground: He did the opposite and was the highest jumper in the meet, finishing first in the high jump with a mark of 6-feet, 7-inches.

The small group of athletes that went to Stanford University to compete did not have to compete with weather, however. All six of the CSU athletes were long distance runners, along with the distance coach Bryan Berryhill. The meet is annually one of the top distance meets of the season, Berryhill said. Freshman runner Nicole Peters made a personal best.

“Overall, we had six very solid efforts, but had nothing real outstanding,” Berryhill said.

In the Arizona State meet, 26 CSU athletes participated in a very competitive meet, with a higher level of competition than the Rob Upton Invitational.

Jason Schutz, a discus thrower, was one of the men sent to face the Sun Devils. He threw his disc a distance of 184 feet and 9 inches, good enough for second place. Alex Godell, who had a standout indoor track season in the weight throw, also had a strong showing in the ASU meet.

Godell and Leah Elmshauser posted regional qualifying marks in the hammer throw, with throws of 61.16 meters and 50.04 meters, respectively. Triple jumper Jason Smith also picked up a regional qualifying jump, with a distance of 14.78 meters.

Track and field beat writer Scott Callahan can be reached at sports@collegian.com.

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