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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Track to compete in Pac-10s in Tempe

    Track to compete in Pac-10s in Tempe

    As the season winds down for the Arizona men’s and women’s track and field teams, the competition is beginning to heat up.

    The Pacific 10 Conference Championships begin Friday in Tempe as the multi-sport athletes compete first. The remainder of the events will occur the following weekend.

    “”I think that we are in really good shape,”” said head coach Fred Harvey. “”On the women’s side, we are overcoming some injuries to key athletes and getting them healthy will mean a lot. But everyone else is fit and ready to do some things.””

    After the teams’ success last week at the UA-ASU-NAU Double Dual Meet, Harvey knows there is only one direction the squads can go: up.

    “”The sprints are very good right now,”” Harvey said. “”We haven’t peaked yet by any stretch of the imagination at this time and I fully expect that to continue. It’s nice that it’s happening now because it’s so close to the regionals. Those performances absolutely should, and will continue.””

    Last week the sprinters stole the show, winning several events in stunning fashion. Senior sprinter Bobby McCoy won the 400-meter dash by posting a personal-best time of 45.6 and ran the anchor leg of the 4x400m relay in 44.6 to make up a three-second difference and help his squad win the event. As the championship season approaches, Harvey is looking for consistency and for his best athletes to shine on the bright stage.

    “”Consistency is everything, and it’s even more important when you are that good,”” Harvey said. “”(Senior thrower) Shawn Best has been consistent all year long, and (junior thrower) Zach Lloyd has not hit his best throw yet. (Seniors) Daniel Marshall and Luis Rivera are going to be very important in the long and triple jump. Those guys were jumping well, but they weren’t getting us on the board.””

    Harvey added that the team has met his expectations all year long, and if his team continues to improve it could easily finish as a top-15 team in the nation.

    Wildcats to compete in US Olympic Trials; UA assistant tabbed as head manager for US team

    When the U.S. Olympic Trials take place June 6 in Eugene, Ore., Arizona will be well represented.

    McCoy, Lloyd, sophomore high jumpers Jasmin Day and Elizabeth Patterson and junior heptathlete Shevell Quinley will all be competing for a spot on the national team.

    “”It will be a pretty long shot for any of them to make the team,”” said UA assistant track coach James Li. “”The (U.S.) team is very good. Bobby McCoy might have a shot if he takes another second (off his time in the 400-meter dash), but (he is) still somewhat of a long shot.””

    Li will also be the subject of an ESPN documentary that will air later this year.

    Originally from Beijing, Li will be the head manager for the U.S. track team at the Summer Olympic Games in August. He will be coaching Bernard Lagat, who won two gold medals for the United States at the World Championships in 2007.

    “”It means a lot,”” Li said of coaching the Olympics. “”It’s the Olympic games and it is the recognition of professional achievement and things like that. It’s definitely a great honor to go.””

    Harvey said the choosing of Li as the head manger was a “”no-brainer.””

    “”He knows a lot of being the team manager, and the most important position on the staff is the head manager,”” Harvey said. “”He is the coordinator of everything and as the head Olympic coach, you don’t coach the team, you are a figurehead.

    “”(Li) has made a transition from China to America and is looked upon as one of the leaders in the sport,”” Harvey added. “”In his country, he is a hero. He has done a lot of great things and (China) respects that. ESPN is doing a documentary because it is a very interesting story. This is a person who knows a lot about the sport and has a lot of connections in China, a person who understands the role of the team manager and going to an entirely different culture. It’s beyond a shadow of a doubt (that he should be the team manager).””

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