Men's Track

    Nine Hoosiers Punch Tickets to Texas for NCAAs

    Go Hoosiers! Freshman Derek Drouin has qualified for the NCAA Indoor Championships in the high jump.
    Go Hoosiers!
    Freshman Derek Drouin has qualified for the NCAA Indoor Championships in the high jump.
    Go Hoosiers!

    March 10, 2009

    Weekly Notes in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader | All-Access Interview with NCAA-bound Hoosiers

    The Hoosiers are ready for the NCAA Indoor Championships. With nine athletes qualifying, the Hoosiers will be represented in six events. Senior Molly Beckwith will run the 800-meters, holding the ninth seed heading into the national meet. Senior Jeff Coover holds the sixth seed in the pole vault. Junior Vera Neuenswander will be the 12th seed in the women's pole vault. Freshman Derek Drouin has cleared 2.18m, which makes him the 15th seed. Senior Wendi Robinson will be the 14th seed in the 5,000m. In the men's distance medley relay, sophomores De'Sean Turner and Ben Hubers and seniors John Gunnell and Evan Bardach will run as the 14th seed, after getting their automatic entry last weekend at the Alex Wilson Invitational. Beckwith and Robinson are returning to the indoor championships for the second straight year, and Neuenswander made it to the indoor meet in 2007.

    The NCAA Indoor Championships will be held at Gilliam Indoor Track Stadium on the campus of Texas A&M in College Station. The meet opens at 10 am on Friday, starting with combined events. At 4 pm, the meet gets going with field events and track events starting at that time. On Saturday, combined events start at noon and other events start at 3:30 pm.

    LAST TIME OUT
    Indiana closed the season at the Alex Wilson Invitational. The meet provided the Hoosiers with a last chance at qualifying for the NCAA Indoor Championships. The Hoosiers took full advantage of their last chance. Sophomores De'Sean Turner and Ben Hubers and seniors John Gunnell and Evan Bardach ran the distance medley relay, recording Indiana's second automatic NCAA qualifying mark of the season.

    The DMR team recorded a time of 9:31.81, which is the second fastest in school history. The time is less than a second behind only a team that included national champion Sean Jefferson and Olympic Gold medalist David Neville in 2004. The automatic qualifying standard is 9:34.00, more than two seconds slower than the IU time.

    Junior Ashley Rhoades took second in the high jump, and senior Wil Glover took second in the 60-meters. Rhoades cleared 1.76m (5-9.25) to tie for first. The Columbia City, Ind., product took second after tie-breakers. Glover recorded a time of 6.84 and finished just .01 seconds out of first.

    COOVER GETS BIG CLEARANCE, BIG TEN TITLE
    Senior Jeff Coover took sole possession of the fourth spot in the IU record books with his Big Ten Championship clearance of 5.45m (17-10.50). Coover's mark makes him the sixth seed in the men's pole vault at NCAAs. He improved his career mark by 3.25 inches. Coover's Big Ten Indoor pole vault crown is the tenth in IU history. He is Indiana's 21st Big Ten champion in the pole vault, including outdoor champions. The championship is the third Big Ten honor of the season for the senior. He earned Big Ten Athlete of the week honors twice this season as well.

    The Big Ten Conference announced on Feb. 9 that Coover was the Big Ten Field Athlete of the Week for the week of Feb. 1-7. Coover won the pole vault at the Meyo Invitational with the Big Ten's second-best jump this season, topped only by his own season best. This was the second consecutive award for Coover, as he received the honor for his career-best mark at the Indiana Relays the week prior.

    Indiana track and field director and head coach Ron Helmer said that winning the award two weeks in a row is quite a feat, showing a consistency that is rare in the pole vault.

    "It is a great honor for Jeff to be named Big Ten Field Athlete of the Week for a second time this season," said Helmer. "Consistency is the key to success and consistent performance at a high level creates champions. Our vault program is outstanding and both Jeff and Coach Wiseman should take great pride in this accomplishment."

    Coover didn't stop with two good weeks. He won the championship section of the pole vault at the Tyson Invite. He finished 15 centimeters better than his closest competitor.

    BECKWITH WRITES HER NAME THROUGHOUT IU RECORD BOOKS
    Molly Beckwith has had one of the best indoor seasons in IU history. She will try to improve on that by bringing home All-America honors in the 800-meters. She is the ninth seed at NCAAs, and her time of 2:55.5 is just 1.01 seconds away from fifth on the national list.

    Beckwith took home three Big Ten medals on day two at the Big Ten Indoor Championships, leading the Hoosiers to a fourth-place finish, the best for IU since 2003. Beckwith took second in the 400-meters and the 600-meters and led the 4x400m relay team to third.

    Beckwith saw eerily similar results in the 400m and 600m finals. She finished second in both events to runners from the opposite heat of the two heat finals. Beckwith recorded career bests in both events, finishing in 54.67 in the 400, less than a second out of first.

    In the 600m final, she was .18 seconds out of first with her IU record time of 1:27.96. She improved more than a full second on the IU record she set earlier this season. In the relay, Beckwith ran the fastest leg, leading the Hoosiers to the fourth-fastest time in IU lore. Just 1.5 seconds slower than the provisional qualifying mark, their time of 3:41.50 was more than a second faster than the quartet's season best.

    Senior Molly Beckwith improved her provisional mark and school record in the 800m run at the Meyo Invitational. Her time of 2:05.55 is the ninth best in Division I and the third best in the Big Ten.

    Beckwith is also provisionally qualified as a member of the distance medley relay team. Their time at the Meyo Invite is the second best in IU history, slower than only the relay team that she helped to the record in 2008.

    FRESHMAN DROUIN MAKING A MARK IN HIS DEBUT CAMPAIGN
    Freshman Derek Drouin added three-quarters of an inch to his provisional qualification in the high jump at the Tyson Invite. His clearance of 2.18m (7-1.75) moves him into fourth-place in the IU record books. He is now tied with former IU standout Dennis Adama on the all-time list. He is seeded 15th at NCAAs, but he is within three centimeters of the second best mark in the country

    Drouin took second in the high jump at the Big Ten Indoor Championships. Drouin's second place finish was good for eight team points. The Corunna, Ontario native matched his career best mark with a clearance of 2.18m (7-1.75). He was just three centimeters out of first place.

    FORECAST CALLS FOR WENDI CONDITIONS AT NCAAS
    Senior Wendi Robinson took fifth in the 5,000m run at Big Tens. She solidified her spot in the national meet with a time of 16:09.67. She earned the team four points with her fifth-place finish. The mark is the 14th best seed time at the NCAAs. She is just five seconds out of the top eight.

    Robinson improved her provisional qualification in the 3,000-meters at the Big Ten Indoor Championships, finishing in 9:26.69 to shed nearly two seconds off of her mark this season and her career best. Her time is the fifth best in IU history. The mark was good for fourth-place in the impressive field of Big Ten runners. She earned five team points.

    Robinson provisionally qualified as a member of the distance medley relay team as well at the Meyo Invite. The group recorded the second fastest time in school history, slower than only the school record setting group that Robinson led last season.

    MEN'S DMR RUNS AUTO TIME, SECOND-FASTEST IN IU HISTORY
    The men's DMR team of sophomores De'Sean Turner and Ben Hubers and seniors John Gunnell and Evan Bardach recorded a time of 9:31.81, which is the second fastest in school history. The time is less than a second behind only a team that included national champion Sean Jefferson and Olympic Gold medalist David Neville in 2004 in the IU record books. The automatic qualifying standard is 9:34.00, more than two seconds slower than the IU time. Hand recorded split times of the Hoosiers' historic realy were 2:53.9 for Turner, 48.0 for Gunnell, 1:49.3 for Bardach, and 4:00.4 for Hubers. The Hoosiers will be the 14th seed at NCAAs, and they are within a second of the top-ten times.

    VERA IS ALL-TIME BEST AT IU
    In the pole vault, junior Vera Neuenswander took fourth place at the Tyson Invite. Neuenswander broke her own IU record with a clearance of 4.20m (13-9.25). She matched the automatic qualifying standard, ensuring her spot in the national meet. Neuenswander improved her IU record by five centimeters. She is the 12th seed, but her mark of 4.20m is the same height as the 8th seeded jumper.

    Neuenswander tied for third at the Big Ten meet, clearing 3.97m (13-0.25). The finish earned 5.5 team points for the Hoosiers.


     

     

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