Cavaliers Set For ACC Indoor Championships
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The Virginia track and field team will head to Blacksburg, Va., this week to compete in the 2010 ACC Indoor Track and Field Championships. This season’s conference meet will be held at Virginia Tech’s Rector Field House on Friday and Saturday. Live results for the entire weekend, in addition to a live video stream beginning on Friday at 3 p.m. and Saturday at noon, will be available at VirginiaSports.com.
The Cavaliers return one ACC Champion and nine all-conference performers from the men’s squad that finished in a program-best third place a year ago, while the women’s team finished eighth.
Sophomore Ryan Collins leads the league this season in the 5000m with his automatic qualifying time of 13:46.41. Collins’ mark shattered Virginia’s all-time program record and was just 14 seconds shy of the ACC record set by Clemson’s Robert deBrouwer at 13:32.00 in 1985. He is currently ranked third in the nation in the 5k and earned ACC Performer of the Week honors for his accomplishments following his record-breaking performance.
Collins is the defending conference champion in the 5k, while he also earned All-ACC honors in the 3k with a runner-up finish. Teammate Emil Heineking joined Collins as an all-conference performer in the 5000m last year, finishing third.
The Cavaliers also return junior Greg Nelson who was an All-ACC performer in the high jump last year and has provisionally qualified for NCAAs this season. Nelson cleared 7’ 0.25” at the Armory on Feb. 13 to move into second on Virginia’s all-time records and ranks third in the ACC this season with his mark.
Freshman Robby Andrews and sophomore All-American Lance Roller round out Virginia’s provisional qualifiers on the men’s side, as the duo have run the conference’s top-two 800m times this season. Andrews leads the league with a time of 1:48.02, while Roller – an All-ACC performer in the DMR and 4x400m – sits second with a mark of 1:49.47. Senior Steve Finley ranks third with his personal-best time of 1:50.95.
Junior All-American Meikle Paschal and sophomore Kevin Anding join Roller as all-conference performers returning to the 4x400m relay, while senior Alex Bowman was on the distance medley relay squad that finished third a year ago.
In the mile, sophomore All-American Sintayehu Taye fought for All-ACC honors, finishing third in a group of six competitors that all finished within one-second of each other.
Rounding out Virginia’s returning all-conference performers is junior Adams Abdulrazaaq – who won the 110m hurdles outdoors. Adams finished third in the 60m hurdles indoors last year.
On the women’s side, the Cavaliers have provisionally qualified three athletes for NCAAs this season. Led by junior Catherine White, who has hit the provisional mark in both the 3000m and 5000m, the Cavaliers have also qualified senior Stephanie Garcia in the mile and sophomore Maureen Laffan in the shot put.
White currently leads the league in the 3000m with her time of 9:24.43 from the Armory, while her 5000m time of 16:31.61 from the Husky Classic ranks third.
Laffan’s shot put mark of 51’ 11.25” leads the ACC this season, while Garcia’s mile time is ranked fourth.
In addition, junior Lyndsay Harper is ranked second in the 800m with a time of 2:09.68.
Following the conference championships, the Cavaliers will have one more weekend to attempt to qualify for the NCAA Championships – as they will head to the Last Chance meet at either Notre Dame or Virginia Tech. The 2010 NCAA Indoor Championships are scheduled for March 12-13 in Fayetteville, Ark.