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A Great Day for the Clay

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April 16, 2011
Gary Pine
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AZUSA, Calif. -- Nearly 1,100 athletes from more than 80 colleges and clubs competed under perfect weather conditions at the Third Annual Bryan Clay Invitational hosted by Azusa Pacific University in Cougar Stadium Friday.

Ten hours of track & field competition produced some sterling marks, including a few by the meet namesake himself, Azusa Pacific alum and Olympic Gold Medal Decathlete Bryan Clay. The 31-year old Clay, who led a parade of track & field stars competing in the meet, is known best for his ability to sprint, hurdle and jump, but he showcased his arm today by winning the 40-man field of the javelin throw with a heave of 199’.

Clay’s 2008 Olympic decathlon teammate Trey Hardee won the men’s 200-meters with a fine early-season time of 21.05 with little to no wind to his back. Hardee was pushed by Azusa Pacific All-American junior Zach Keene, who finished second with a 21.23, trailing only Hardee in the in 76-man, 12-section racing of the 200.

On the women’s side Olympians Carol Rodriguez (Puerto Rico) and Angela Whyte (Canada) met in the 100 meters but it was former U.S. long jump champion and 2-time Pac-10 titlist Briana Glenn who stole the spotlight by winning the race with an 11.41. Rodriguez clocked an 11.55, while White checked in with an 11.87.

England’s Christine Ohuruogu, another competitor from the 2008 Beijing Olympics, won the women’s 200-meters with a 23.98.

While Keene pushed Hardee in the 200, he ran in front of the crowd in the 100-meters, winning the race with a personal-best 10.47, the sixth fastest time in Azusa Pacific history.

Other notable performances turned in by Cougars included junior Deon Nolan’s, personal-best 48.09 to win his heat of the 400-meters. Senior Mandy Ross ran a season-best 24.26 in the women’s 200-meters.

In the women’s 800-meters All-Americans Poppy Lawman and Victoria Martinez registered season-bests of 2:10.10 and 2:11.88, respectively. While Lawman has a better mark from last year, Martinez’s effort is the seventh best in Cougar track & field history.

In the field events, sophomore Cheri Smith posted a career-best in the hammer throw with a toss of 144’ 5”.

Friday night at the Mt. SAC Relays in Walnut, All-American junior Lauren Jimison broke the school-record in the 10,000 meters, running a very steady and even-paced race that she won with a 34:16.52, breaking Jacky Kipwambok’s 2-year old record by 8 seconds..