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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    “Championships loom for track, field teams”

    UA junior Gabriella Duclos clears the bar during the pole vault competition at the Jim Click Classic on April 3 at Drachman Stadium. The Wildcats will be competing in their conference championships on May 16 and the NCAAs on May 29.
    UA junior Gabriella Duclos clears the bar during the pole vault competition at the Jim Click Classic on April 3 at Drachman Stadium. The Wildcats will be competing in their conference championships on May 16 and the NCAAs on May 29.

    Now that all the meets of preparation are just about over, the Arizona track and field team’s focus will be on preparing for the championship meets. The Pacific 10 Championships will be held on May 16 in Eugene, Ore., and NCAA Regional Championships on May 29 in the same location.

    “”The training will be lighter in the upcoming weeks,”” said Arizona head coach Fred Harvey. “”The focus will be on fine-tuning before the championship meets.

    “”The No. 1 focus will be to score the most points that we possibly can,”” Harvey added. “”Our goal for each individual will be to score as many points as you can individually, which will, in turn, give us a good team score.””

    As the postseason meets loom, the Wildcats competing know the level of competition will be on an entirely different level.

    “”The Pac-10 meet is something special because the Pac-10 is one of the toughest conferences in the country,”” said long jumper Luis Rivera-Morales. “”In order to compete for the conference and regional championships you have to get a minimum mark, therefore the level of competition will be higher.’

    Rivera-Morales will attempt to bounce back from a disappointing postseason in the indoor season which resulted in him not making the NCAA indoor championships in March.

    “”Being out of the NCAA indoor championships was a disappointment for me,”” Rivera-Morales said. “”I’ve kept my focus throughout the outdoor season, so I’m ready to get good marks in Pac-10s and regionals so that I can get to nationals.””

    Arizona has numerous All-American athletes who will attempt to improve or continue their success in the championship meets.

    High Jumper Liz Patterson will be defending her Pac-10 title and outdoor national championship from a year ago. She shocked many last year when she was the only Arizona track athlete to win a national championship. This time around she will be one of the favorites going into the meets, as she hopes to repeat.

    Arizona thrower Zack Lloyd looks to improve on a fourth-place finish in nationals in last year’s outdoor season as the All-American finishes up his last meets as a Wildcat.

    Another senior hoping to finish his Arizona career on a high note is Chris Titsworth, who has been on a roll as of late. Titsworth bettered his regional-qualifying mark in the 400-meter hurdle on Saturday in the UA-ASU-NAU Double Dual meet.

    Senior Gabriella Duclos said she hopes to perform well in the pole vault in the championship meets, as she continues to perform well after a medical redshirt in the 2008 season, due to a stress fracture in her left ankle.

    With a strong enough showing in the Pac-10 and regional championships meets, they may be able to earn a spot in the NCAA outdoor national championships in Fayetteville, Ark,. on June 10.

    “”These are the most important meets that we prepare for,”” Rivera-Morales said. “”We have to bring 100 percent for these championship meets, and that’s the bottom line.””

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