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IC4A/ECAC Outdoor Track Blog: Day 2

May 17, 2008  Princeton, N.J.  RSS
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Freshman Kolby Shepherd will pole vault today at 4 p.m. He figures to be one of the top contenders, after placing fifth at the IC4A Indoor Championship.

Freshman Kolby Shepherd will pole vault today at 4 p.m. He figures to be one of the top contenders, after placing fifth at the IC4A Indoor Championship.

From the bleachers at Princeton's William Weaver Track & Field Stadium in Princeton, N.J., will provide live updates throughout the three days of the 2008 ECAC and IC4A Outdoor Track & Field Championships. Please see below for other ways to follow all of the action.

Complete Meet Schedule
Live Results (Courtesy

The most recent posts will be located at the just below this italicized message. You may need to refresh the page periodically to view the latest updates. Feel free to email with any comments, questions or suggestions. Thanks!

IC4A Men's Team Standings (Through 4 Events)
1) Liberty - 26
2) Georgetown - 25
3) Syracuse - 18
4) Iona - 16
5) Manhattan - 12

ECAC Women's Team Standings (Through 8 Events - End Day 2)
1) William & Mary - 28
2T) Virginia - 19
2T) Syracuse - 19
4) Providence - 18
5) Boston U. - 17
14) Liberty - 9

7 p.m. - Newell gives Liberty its 10th decathlon champion in the last 17 years, winning 6,898 to 6,763 over Tom FitzSimons of Mount St. Mary's. So, he swept the Big South and IC4A decathlon titles this year.

IC4A Final Decathlon Standings (Top Five Competitors)
1) Daniel Newell, Liberty - 6,898
2) Tom FitzSimons, Mount St. Mary's - 6,763
3) Tyler Clarke, Duke - 6,642
4) Brian Blumenstein, UNC Wilmington - 6,574
5) Matt Miller, UNC Wilmington - 6,537

I'm going to pack up the blog for today. The men's pole vault is still progressing, so it will be a while before we know where Liberty stands in the IC4A team rankings. What we do know is that the Flames have 44 points heading to the final day, which will start at 10:30 a.m. with the men's javelin.

Have a good Saturday evening! Full details will be forthcoming in my release on Thanks for your interest in Liberty track & field and Go Flames!

6:55 p.m. - While we await final decathlon results, here's what Newell did on the pole vault and javelin. He pole vaulted 4.05 meters, 13-3.5. Not his best effort, but solid. Newell then set a new personal best in the javelin, as mentioned earlier. It stretched the tape to 47.88 meters, 157-1.

6:45 p.m. - Newell is about to start his 10th and final event of the decathlon, the 1,500-meter run. I honestly am not sure where he stands, since half of the decathletes finished a couple hours ago.

At 400 meters, he is hanging at the back of a pack of 7, in 1:14.

At 800, Newell is up to 5th in 2:32.

At 1200, he is still 5th.

Newell fights home in fifth, clocking 4:41.40. We'll see how the final standings end up.

6:30 p.m. - It appears Clendon Henderson has been defeated in the discus for the first time this year. He should finish second to Ayeni, repeating the finish from 2007. It also appears Ayeni has set a new meet record with his final throw. Official results will be forthcoming.

Newell will start the 1,500 meters for the decathlon shortly, which will wrap up Liberty's competition today.

The men's pole vault is still going on, but both Brandon Hoskins and Kolby Shepherd have been eliminated.

6:15 p.m. - Henderson just took his first throw of the discus finals, and did not improve on his earlier mark. He is in second place now, behind Ayeni of Virginia.

6:10 p.m. - They just announced that Newell's section of the 1,500-meter run will be run at 6:35 p.m. So, his second day of the decathlon will end up spanning nearly 10 hours. However, it will all be worth it if Newell can end up on top, with a nice score.

6 p.m. - Daniel Newell's second javelin throw was a personal best, I'm informed. So, he is still in position to win the decathlon, as the javelin concludes and we prepare for the final event, the 1,500-meter run.

Also, it appears that Henderson has a slim lead over the defending discus titlist, Virginia's Yemi Ayeni, as the finals get underway. Henderson threw 193-2 in the prelims.

5:45 p.m. - Clendon Henderson's first discus toss sailed well past the 180-foot arc. So, he will make the finals and should place well, even if he doesn't improve his mark at all.

Newell has thrown the javelin at least twice now.

Henderson is back up for his third discus attempt. No improvement. He'll get three more throws in finals, in 15-20 minutes.

5:15 p.m. - Hart's official winning distance in the hammer was 222-4. It left him 15 feet in front of Manhattan's Paul Peulich and propelled Liberty into the team lead by one point over Georgetown, 26-25.

Henderson threw the hammer 188-10 for ninth place. He's now warming up for the discus, as the third flight is next on deck.

Newell is finally warming up for the javelin. Two events still remain, over eight hours after he started the day's competition with the 110-meter hurdles.

4:55 p.m. - This will be the final IC4A prelim event involving Liberty athletes. We're still going right to left, for the 100-meter dash. Six heats are scheduled, and each heat winner will make the final, as will the next two fastest times.

Aaron Hewlett and Durell Cull are both entered in heat 3, while Jacey Bailey is set for heat 4.

Heat 1 - 10.47, 10.71, 10.72 are the top three times.

Heat 2 - 10.66, 10.72 are the top two times.

Heat 3 - Hewlett and Cull are up. They need to run 10.72 or faster to stay alive. Cull is third in 10.80, Hewlett 6th in 11.10. Neither will qualify.

Heat 4 - Bailey is ready. 10.72 is still the magic number. Bailey gets sixth in 11.27.

The 4 x 100 relay will be Liberty's only qualifier to Sunday's IC4A running event finals.

Now we'll see how the day wraps up for the Flames. Daniel Newell still has the javelin and 1,500 to go in the decathlon. Kolby Shepherd is still alive in the pole vault. Clendon Henderson is still throwing the discus. I'll provide sporadic updates, as information becomes available.

4:35 p.m. - We're into the prelims of the IC4A 400-meter dash. Phil Leineweber will run in lane 6 of the sixth heat. They are taking the top eight times to Sunday's final. Leineweber only missed the final by .05 seconds a year ago.

Heat 1 - Sanford of Morgan State won in 46.99, followed by 47.33, 47.84, 48.22.

Heat 2 - Lewis of Villanova wins in 46.50, followed by 47.72, 47.83.

Heat 3 - Morgan of Coppin State runs 46.72, followed by 47.00, 47.41, 47.86. 8th is 47.83 right now, with three heats left.

Heat 4 - Adams of Fairleigh Dickinson wins in 47.21. Next is 47.67. 8th is 47.67 now.

Heat 5 - St. Francis wins in 47.25. 8th is 47.41 now, with Leineweber's heat on deck.

Heat 6 - Leineweber needs to run 47.40 or faster to have a chance at the final. His personal best entering today's race is 47.59, set at the 2007 Big South Outdoor Championship.

Leineweber finishes third in 48.47. So, he will not make the final. Gomes of Seton Hall won in 47.30.

4 p.m. - The men's IC4A 110-meter hurdles trials are up. Five heats are slated.

Heat 1 - Joseph of Seton Hall wins in 14.10, followed by 14.19 and 14.25.

Heat 2 - Ezike of Cornell wins in 14.09, followed by 14.31, 14.44.

Heat 3 - Parker takes fifth in 14.82. That was the fastest heat, overall, so far. However, his day will be done. Parker will now turn his focus to the high jump, tomorrow at 1:30 p.m.

Jon Hart has won the hammer throw, and Clendon Henderson took ninth. I'll post official results when they are released. I'll also let you know what that means for the team standings. Liberty may have taken the lead, depending on what Georgetown hammer throwers did.

3:38 p.m. - Let's take a look at the men's 110-meter hurdles. There are five heats scheduled, with each heat winner and the next three fastest times making the final. Matt Parker should have a decent shot at qualifying, as he has already posted an NCAA East Regional qualifier of 14.26 this year. Parker is entered in lane 8 of the third heat. Michael Wray of Pitt is the top entrant. Only a freshman, he ranks No. 17 nationally and won the Big EAST title in 13.75 seconds.

3:30 p.m. - All of the women's action is complete for the day. Eight events have been completed, and the Lady Flames sit in 14th place. I'll post the updated ECAC standings at the top of this blog, and leave them there the rest of the day. Liberty has three more chances to score points Sunday, as Mia Aghaji triple jumps, Chenoa Freeman runs the 400-meter dash and Rebekah Ricksecker competes in the 1,500.

3:20 p.m. - We are ready for the men's 4 x 100 trials. The top eight times make the final.

Heat 1 - Albany wins in 41.00, followed by 41.43, 41.72 and 42.00. Delaware State, the leader, dropped the baton on the final exchange.

Heat 2 - Georgetown wins in 40.75, followed by 41.17, 41.51 and 42.06.

Heat 3 - Liberty is up. Yale wins in 41.19, followed by the Flames in 41.37. Liberty is fifth so far, entering the final heat.

Heat 4 - Virginia and UNC Wilmington finish ahead of Liberty, but the Flames will qualify to the final.

Aaron Hewlett, Donald Manns, Dominic Bolden and Durell Cull will run the final tomorrow at 12:10 p.m. They had the seventh-fastest qualifying time, a season-best 41.37 seconds.

Next up, at 3:45 p.m., is the men's 110-meter hurdles. Matt Parker will compete. Also warming up are the athletes in the men's pole vault (Kolby Shepherd) and discus (Clendon Henderson). These two field events go off at 4 p.m.

2:57 p.m. - I just got word that Jon Hart threw the hammer a personal-best 67.76 meters on his second attempt. That converts to 222-3, putting him in the lead and into the No. 9 spot on the national performance list. His previous best was 219-2, achieved at the 2007 NCAA East Regional Championship meet in Gainesville, Fla. Hart is trying to defend his IC4A hammer title from 2007.

2:50 p.m. - Let's set the stage for the first men's IC4A running event of the afternoon, the 4 x 100 relay prelims. The Liberty quartet of Dominic Bolden, Aaron Hewlett, Donald Manns and Durell Cull will compete in Heat 3, Lane 5. There are four total heats, and the top eight times will make the final. Liberty, entered at 41.42, is in the same heat as Yale, which has clocked 40.90 seconds this year.

They have just now started Daniel Newell's section of the decathlon pole vault. So, no news to report there.

The men's hammer throw should be approaching the finals, a couple blocks east of Weaver Track & Field Stadium.

2 p.m. - I guess I haven't said anything about the weather recently. It's beautiful--nearing 70 degrees and sunny. Whereas people took refuge under the overhang yesterday due to the rain, its shade is welcome today.

Hibbert runs 24.75 to get fourth place in the opening heat. It will be tough for her to make the final now. Only four other runners in the next five heats can beat her.

Her time does not hold up.

Unless I hear any big news, that will be my last post until closer to 3 p.m. I need to seek out a late lunch.

1:30 p.m. - The next event on the track involving a Liberty competitor is the ECAC 200-meter dash. Senior Charlene Hibbert will try to extend her collegiate career by qualifying for tomorrow's final. She is in the first of what I believe to be six heats. The top eight times overall will qualify.

Hibbert will be the final Lady Flame to compete today. Next up for Liberty will be the prelims of the IC4A men's 4 x 100 relay at 3 p.m.

Hibbert's 200-meter dash is slated for a 1:50 p.m. start.

1:05 p.m. - The ECAC 800-meter trials is now beginning. Each of the four heat winners plus the next four fastest times will qualify for tomorrow afternoon's final. Jaime Watson will run the first heat, so she will either need to win or post a fast time.

Heat 1 - Watson is tucked on the shoulder of McKenzie from Villanova in 60 seconds at 400.

The 600 split is 1:32. Still McKenzie then Watson.

McKenzie wins in 2:06.68, Watson second in 2:10.38. She will have to wait to see what times the next three heats post.

Heat 2 - Bailey of Boston College wins in 2:07.05, followed by 2:08 and 2:09. Watson is third among the qualifiers on time, with two heats remaining.

Heat 3 - Jesse Carlin of Penn wins in 2:07.43. Second is 2:10.06. Only the winner of heat four can beat Watson, or she will be eliminated.

Heat 4 - The top 6 all came in under 2:10.15. So, Watson will not make the final.

The men's hammer throw has started, about two blocks away. Seniors Jon Hart and Clendon Henderson are entered. Hart is the defending champion.

12:35 p.m. - Here's an update on the men's decathlon. Newell threw the discus 107-4, 32.72m, worth 518 points. So, he maintains a solid, 188-point advantage over UNC Wilmington junior Matt Miller. Here are the updated top five.

IC4A Decathlon Standings - Top Five Competitors (Through Seven Events)
1) Daniel Newell, Liberty - 5,038
2) Matt Miller, UNC Wilmington - 4,850
3) Aaron King, UConn - 4,791
4) Kyle Rowbotham, UConn - 4,756
5) Tom FitzSimons, Mount St. Mary's - 4,751

Group 1 is currently pole vaulting. Newell will vault with Group 2. Three events remaining--pole vault, javelin and the 1,500-meter run.

12:15 p.m. - Now we're ready for the women's 400-meter trials. Freeman will run in lane 5 of the third heat. The top eight times will make tomorrow's final, so we'll have to watch the clock instead of place in each heat.

Heat 1 - Friday of Seton Hall wins in 54.20, followed by 55.28, 55.70, 56.70, 57.51, 58.51

Heat 2 - Johnson of Georgetown wins in 53.81, followed by 54.71, 54.95, 55.31, 56.22, 56.92

Heat 3 - Freeman gets out to a fast start. She's typically a fast closer. She led much of the way before finishing 3rd in a personal-best 54.79. Kendrick of Morgan State won in 54.3x. Freeman is sixth so far.

Heat 4 - The winner only runs 55.07. Freeman is still sixth.

Heat 5 - Lawrence from Coppin State posts a 54.64. Freeman is seventh, entering the final heat.

Heat 6 - Freeman is in the final, as the winner form George Mason only goes 54.91.

Freeman will run tomorrow at 12:50 p.m. She flirted with a pair of standards, as the regional qualifying mark is 54.61 and Gina Turner's 16-year-old school record is 54.68.

The next Liberty event is the ECAC 800-meter run prelims, at 12:50 p.m. This includes three-time defending Big South champion Jaime Watson of the Lady Flames.

11:50 a.m. - The heats for the ECAC 100-meter dash are getting started. The top 16 qualifiers (2 from each heat plus the next 8 fastest times) make the semifinals, scheduled for 12:35 p.m.

We have four heats, and Andrea Beckles runs in heat 3, lane 6. She's in the same heat as two-time defending champ Murielle Ahoure of George Mason.

Heat 1 - Trisha-Ann Hawthorne of UConn, a freshman who won the Big EAST title, takes heat one in 11.62, followed by 11.64, 11.72, 11.94, 12.08, 12.10, 12.23.

Heat 2 - Calhoun of Pitt wins in 11.74, followed by 11.85, 11.93, 12.02, 12.06, 12.08.

Heat 3 - Beckles needs to place top two, or faster than 12.10 to stay alive. Ahoure wins in 11.52, followed by Evans of Morgan State in 11.80. Beckles is fourth in 12.14, after getting out of the blocks slowly. She will not make the semifinals.

Heat 4 - Owusu of Syracuse wins in 11.81.

Next up for Liberty will be Chenoa Freeman in the 400-meter trials, at noon.

Looks like Newell fouled two of his three discus attempts, and his lone mark was not super-far. I'll post updated standings when they are available. He should still be in the lead, as I haven't seen many great efforts by the decathletes in the discus circle. Pole vault is up next.

11:12 a.m. - We're ready for the first of three heats of the women's 1,500-meter run. This initial heat includes Liberty junior Rebekah Ricksecker, the back-to-back Big South champion in the event. The top two from each heat reach tomorrow's final, as do the next four fastest qualifiers.

Also in this first heat is Callie Hogan of Villanova, the ECAC indoor mile titlist.

400 meters - Approximately 71 seconds. Ricksecker is toward the back of the pack, which includes all of the runners.

800 meters - Approximately 2:23. Ricksecker still biding her time in about 9th.

1200 meters - Approximately 3:36. Ricksecker makes a big move with 300 left, surging into the lead after steadily moving up during the previous lap.

A new PR for Ricksecker, as she wins in 4:25.47, improving from her previous best of 4:29.10. Hogan only finished fourth for Villanova, in 4:27.00. Ricksecker makes the final and moves up to No. 3 on Liberty's all-time list.  

Heat 2 - An impressive, wire-to-wire win for Bland of West Virginia. She blazes to a 4:17.02. Pending the results of this weekend's other college meets, Bland ties for the eighth-fastest time in the nation.

Heat 3 - Duke's Lehman pulls away from a tight pack of three to win in 4:24.41.

Ricksecker will run the 1,500-meter final tomorrow at 12:15 p.m.

They are still warming up for the decathlon discus second flight. Next up for Liberty on the track is Andrea Beckles in the 100-meter dash, at 11:35.

10:50 a.m. - I'll keep track of all five heats in the women's 4 x 100 relay, to see if Liberty gets to the final out of heat 4.

Heat 1 - UNC Wilmington 46.20, St. John's 47.57, Georgetown 47.69
Heat 2 - Morgan State 45.40, George Mason 45.52, Binghamton 47.23, Coppin State 47.57
Heat 3 - Seton Hall 45.91, Virginia 46.41, Mt. St. Mary's 47.44
Heat 4 - Liberty needs to either win or run 47.23 or faster to stay alive. All three baton passes are smooth, and Lady Flames clock 46.49 for second. Pitt wins in 45.74.
Heat 5 - Liberty needs the runner-up to post 46.50 or slower, and the Lady Flames will reach the final for the second straight year. UConn wins in 45.84, Rutgers second in 46.29.

So, Liberty just missed the final. George Mason, Rutgers and Virginia take the at-large qualifiers. The Lady Flames missed out by .08 seconds.

The decathlon discus second flight, including Newell, is warming up.

10:08 a.m. - It looks like Newell will be in the second of two flights of the discus. So, he will not throw for a while.

9:50 a.m. - With the next three decathlon disciplines being field events (discus, pole vault, javelin), it will be tough for me to provide detailed coverage, especially in the absence of performance boards. I'll do the best I can.

In the meantime, I'll get ready for the start of the track events. First up will be the ECAC 4 x 100 relay at 10:30. Five heats are scheduled, and the Lady Flames' quartet of Brittany Heath, Charlene Hibbert, Chenoa Freeman and Andrea Beckles will run in lane 7 during the fourth heat. Defending event champion Pittsburgh should provide Liberty's toughest competition in the heat.

Each heat winner advances to Sunday's final, as do the squads with the next three fastest overall times.

9:40 a.m. - Newell actually boosted his lead from 240 to 250 points, heading into the discus. Here's the updated leaderboard:

IC4A Decathlon Standings - Top Five Competitors (Through Six Events)
1) Daniel Newell, Liberty - 4,520
2) Matt Miller, UNC Wilmington - 4,270
3) Tom FitzSimons, Mount St. Mary's - 4,263
4) Brian Blumenstein, UNC Wilmington - 4,217
5) Aaron King, UConn - 4,209

9:20 a.m. - The first heat goes off at 9:08. Schuck of Lehigh wins easily, in 15.39 seconds.

Newell is in heat two, competing in lane 6. Devaud from UMBC takes the lead near the middle of the race before taking a spill over hurdle #6 of 10. Newell goes on to win, clocking a 15.85. 750 points for that performance give the junior a cumulative score of 4,520 through six events.

Crosta of Rutgers wins heat #3 in 15.93.

In heat 4, it's Hall of Penn in 15.27, King of UConn in 15.30 and Lewis of Virginia in 15.69.

Heat 5 has Clarke of Duke winning in 15.47 and Rowbotham of UConn second in 15.52. Newell is back to seventh in this event.

In the sixth and final heat, Miller of UNC Wilmington clocks a 15.27.

Newell's time holds up as the eighth-fastest in the six heats. He will maintain a pretty sizable advantage in the overall standings, heading to the discus ring. The discus should start around 9:50.

9:05 a.m. - We will start off behind schedule for the second straight day. It's 9:05, and the hurdle crew is still rounding up hurdles. At least the track will be almost completely dry by the time we get started.

8:52 a.m. - The wind direction has shifted 180 degrees from yesterday. A day ago, there was a steady breeze out of the east. Today, a stronger wind is coming from the west. So, the hurdle crew (currently including Liberty associate head coach Lance Bingham) is setting up the hurdles in the opposite direction.

The decathlon hurdlers will now run from right to left on your radio dial (or your computer screen). I'm not certain which heat will include Newell, but I can tell you that his season-best time was a wind-aided 15.61 seconds at the Texas Relays. He will have plenty of wind assistance this morning as well.

Newell and the other decathletes are also excited about this wind for the discus. The discus is one of the very few events in which competitors benefit from throwing into an opposing wind.

8:30 a.m. – We're getting ready to start the second of three days at the IC4A and ECAC Outdoor Track & Field Championships, on a warmer and drier Saturday at Princeton. The sun is shining brightly, and not a cloud is visible in the sky. The Princeton event staff is out blowing the remaining water off the track surface.

We are awaiting the start of the decathlon 110-meter hurdles, the sixth of 10 events. It's scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. To review, Liberty junior Daniel Newell is in great position after day one, 240 points ahead of second-place Tom FitzSimons of Mount St. Mary's. Newell posted his highest-ever first day score, 3,770, despite some adverse weather conditions (rain, wind, unseasonably chilly temperatures). Here are the top five entering today's action, which will include the 110-meter hurdles, discus, pole vault, javelin and 1,500-meter run.

Day One IC4A Decathlon Leaders
1) Daniel Newell, Liberty – 3,770

2) Tom FitzSimons, Mount St. Mary's – 3,530
3) Alex Lewis, Harvard – 3,486
4) Brian Blumenstein, UNC Wilmington – 3,482
5) Ryan White, Bucknell – 3,459

I should also make mention of the current ninth-place decathlete, David Lewis of Virginia. He enters day two with 3,400 points, 370 in back of Newell. Lewis is a senior who traditionally performs well on the second day. He posted a score of 7,105 earlier this year, which is better than any of the 23 remaining competitors (including Newell) have done in 2008. Newell posted a career-best 6,962 points at the Texas Relays on April 2-3.

Speaking of standings, both the Liberty men's and women's teams are near the top of the leaderboard, after excelling in Friday's distance races. The men's squad is trying to repeat as IC4A outdoor champion for the first time in program history, while the Lady Flames hope to replicate their seventh-place showing last season.

Top Five IC4A Men's Teams (Through Three Events)
1) Georgetown – 25
2) Syracuse – 18
3T) Liberty – 16
3T) Iona – 16
5T) Duquesne – 9
5T) William & Mary – 9

Top Five ECAC Women's Teams (Through Three Events)
1) Providence – 18
2) Virginia – 15
3T) West Virginia – 10
3T) William & Mary – 10
5) Liberty - 9

Here is a schedule of today's other events featuring Liberty athletes, in addition to the decathlon. I will most likely remain at the track all day, so will focus on running events and intersperse field results when possible.

10:30 a.m. – ECAC 4 x 100-meter relay trials
10:50 a.m. – ECAC 1,500-meter run trials (Rebekah Ricksecker)
11:35 a.m. – ECAC 100-meter dash trials (Andrea Beckles)
12 p.m. – ECAC 400-meter dash trials (Chenoa Freeman)
12:35 p.m. – ECAC 100-meter dash semifinals (Andrea Beckles)
12:50 p.m. – ECAC 800-meter run trials (Jaime Watson)
1 p.m. – IC4A hammer throw (Jon Hart & Clendon Henderson)
1:40 p.m. – ECAC 200-meter dash trials (Charlene Hibbert)
3 p.m. – IC4A 4 x 100-meter relay trials
3:45 p.m. – IC4A 110-meter hurdles trials (Matt Parker)
4 p.m. – IC4A discus throw (Clendon Henderson)
4 p.m. – IC4A pole vault (Kolby Shepherd & Brandon Hoskins)
4:05 p.m. – IC4A 400-meter dash trials (Phil Leineweber)
4:30 p.m. – IC4A 100-meter dash trials (Jacey Bailey, Durell Cull & Aaron Hewlett)

Finally, you may be wondering what these acronyms ECAC and IC4A stand for. ECAC is short for Eastern College Athletic Conference, and IC4A represents Intercollegiate Association of Amateur Athletes of America. The ECAC is the overall conference Liberty belongs to, but the men's meet is known as the IC4A Championship. Why? Well, they've been doing it that way for 132 years now!

Happy reading!