Apr 072004
 
Authors: John Teten

Weather permitting, the Colorado State track and field men’s and

women’s teams defend Jack Christiansen Track this weekend at the

Ram Invite.

The weekend weather forecast shows a 30 percent chance of snow,

producing yet another chilled, blustery Saturday afternoon.

The outdoor track season has been tainted with cold weather for

three consecutive weeks, an obstacle proving more challenging than

the competition. Again, the Rams will fight both the weather and

teams from around the region.

“It’s another opportunity for us to run different events,” head

coach Del Hessel said, “and work on things we need to get

done.”

This weekend many athletes will be given the chance to compete

in multiple events.

Milers Danielle Korb and Katie Yemm are among those running a

rare triple. They are scheduled to run the 800-meters, the 200 and

the mile relay.

“We get a chance to see what their foot speed is,” Hessel said.

“They want to run well, though it’s not their forte.”

This weekend continues the process of preparing for more

prestigious meets in the coming weeks. The Rams compete next

weekend in Nebraska and then travel to Des Moines, Iowa, for the

Drake Relays, one of the biggest outdoor meets in the nation.

“These first three (meets) are just prep,” Hessel said. “Each

meet gets tougher.”

By training through the meets, meaning running hard in practice

without taking a break prior to a meet, the Rams improve their

speed and experience, Hessel said.

Those improvements are starting to pay off – the women are

currently ranked 25th in the nation.

With many runners entered in multiple events, the prospect of

posting a regional qualifying time is small, but just as Korb

qualified last week in the 1,500, anything can happen, especially

with the technical events, Hessel said.

“You really don’t know when you’re going to get a good throw or

a good jump,” he said.

Jumpers Jacob Benson, Jon Uher, Jill McKenzie and Rheannon

Backes and a loaded throwing corps, including Magnus Lohse and

two-time Mountain West Conference athlete of the week Loree Smith

make any weekend a chance to post record-breaking marks.

Activities begin at 9 a.m. on Saturday with the men’s hammer

throw. Running events are set to start at 11:45 a.m.

Notes:

It’s tough to sprint in snowshoes. The meet could be canceled

should a storm dump…Smith was named Wednesday as the Mountain

West Conference Women’s Track & Field athlete of the week for

the second consecutive week after winning the women’s hammer throw

at the Texas Relays with a throw of 220 feet. That mark set a MWC

record, breaking the old mark she set two weeks earlier, and

qualified the junior for the USA Olympic Trails in June. She now

leads the nation in the hammer throw.

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