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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Track heads in for tough competition

    As if the competition level for the UA men’s and women’s track has not been stiff enough in the young outdoor season, the Wildcats will take it to the next level when they travel to Walnut, Calif., for theÿ 50th annual Mt. Sac Relays today through Sunday. The meet is not only one of the premier college meets of the season, but also serves as a final tuneup for some athletes training for the U.S. Olympic Time Trials on June 27.

    The teams will kick off events today at Hilmer Lodge Stadium at Mt. San Antonio College. They won’t compete on Saturday, as that day is reserved for high school events, but they will pick back up on Sunday morning.

    “”It’s a great meet for folks to be able to get out and compete against a high level of competition,”” said UA head coach Fred Harvey. “”You have (U.S.) Olympians, people on the verge of being Olympic team members and a number of Olympians from different countries competing.””

    Harvey hopes the intense level of the athletes competing will serve as a test for his athletes as they head into the Pacific 10 Championships next month.

    “”The No. 1 goal is to secure more NCAA qualifiers and to fortify the marks we already have,”” he said.

    Some of the main focuses for the No. 15 men’s squad this weekend will be earning junior hurdler Chris Titsworth a qualification in the 110-meter hurdles and having senior sprinter Bobby McCoy solidify his 400m dash mark, which at 46.13 seconds, is still one of the top marks in the world so far this outdoor season, but Harvey feels he could do better.ÿ

    Harvey will also look for the men’s 4x400m relay team – which includes both Titsworth and McCoy – to improve the mark it set at last weekend’s Sun Angel Classic in Tempe. The mark was a regional-qualifying time, but Harvey said the group has better times in them.

    On the No. 20 women’s team, the goals basically remain the same.ÿOne athlete Harvey hopes will step up this weekend is freshman LaTisha Holden in the 110m hurdles.ÿHer mark last weekend fell .03 seconds short of a regional-qualifying mark. Harvey also expects to see senior runner Ashley Gadson follow up her personal record in the 400m dash at the Willie Williams Classic two weeks ago with another big time this weekend.

    Both teams have a combined 35 regional qualifications already and there are still six weeks of competition remaining before the NCAA West Regional Championships in Northridge, Calif., on May 30. While the qualification process is a little easier during the outdoor season, the team has made great strides to overcome a relatively disappointing indoor season to get where they are now.

    “”I can say for our team that their level of competitiveness and their attitude toward being successful is a thing they have done a great job of,”” Harvey said. “”They’re all holding each other accountable for just getting better.””

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