FLAGSTAFF, Ariz.—The Arizona State track and field teams wrapped Friday’s competition at the Lumberjack Team Challenge at NAU’s Walkup Skydome with a number of highs to open the 2014 season.
“Today was a mixed bag for us,” head coach Greg Kraft said. “Obviously you want to celebrate accomplishments like Ryan Milus in the 60, but at the end of the day this is a team sport and you have to try to look at things from an overall perspective. From that point, it was a mixed bag. We didn’t take advantage of certain opportunities elsewhere on the men’s sprints side.”
Redshirt senior Ryan Milus stormed into his final season with the No. 21 Sun Devil men's team by winning the 60m dash with a time of 6.56, currently the fasted time in the nation and a new personal best.
ASU went 1-2-3-5 in the 60m, with freshman Tatum Benard Taylor coming in second at 6.63, while Devan Spann finished third at 6.76. Trae Armstrong finished fifth with a mark of 6.87.
“There isn’t a lot of time to become one of the top-15 student-athletes in the country to qualify for the national meet,” Kraft added. “After today, we have five shots, and by not having the mark today, really delays your progression. We had a lot of young athletes today, and it’s part of the learning curve.”
No. 23 ASU went 1-2-4 in the women’s long jump competition, with freshman Kira Moreland kicking off her career with a best mark of 5.95m. Sophomore Jasmine Gibbs kicked off her career at ASU with a best jump of 5.81m for second while senior Alycia Herring finished third at 5.72.
Gibbs also finished with the second-fastest time in the 60m dash at 7.42.
Redshirt senior Derick Hinch placed first in pole vault action with a clearance at 5.20m. Redshirt sophomore Tanner Greeley and freshman Dillon Groener each cleared 4.75m.
Redshirt freshman CJ Albertson breezed through the men’s mile run, finishing nearly five seconds ahead of second place with a time of 4.25.23.
In the 200m dash finals, freshman Marcus Setoki won his heat with a time of 21.74.
In the 400m, senior Sarah Geren led the Sun Devils with a time of 55.19. Freshman Sara Mcdonald won her heat with a time of 55.92, and also making her collegiate debut, sophomore Kiera Bulluck finished third in her heat of the 400m with a time of 59.11.
Senior Heather Arseneau kicked off the pole vault competition with a first-place finish, clearing 3.87m. Senior Shaylah Simpson finished in a tie for second with a finish at 3.77m, and redshirt junior Amber Pasternak finished the day at 3.67m.
ASU went 1-2-4-5 in the women’s mile, with freshman Chiara Warner picking up her first indoor victory with a time of 5:08.34. Junior Payton Schutte finished second at 5:11.58, while freshman Chelsey Totten took fourth with a time of 5:18.90. Freshman Kala Stone rounded out the Sun Devil finishers with a fifth-place time of 5:21.80.
Schutte also picked up a win in the 800m, crossing the finish line at 2:23.31, while teammate and freshman Mia Townsend clocked in at 2:26.80 for fourth place.
Freshman Micha Auzenne took second in the 60m hurdles at 8.57, while Herring ran the 60 dash in 7.72. Also in the 60m dash was freshman LaTroya Franklin, who finished in 7.62.
“LaTroya (Franklin) really had a nice day, making the 60 finals and running a strong mile relay leg,” Kraft said. “The middle distance girls had a nice day with Warner winning the mile, and it’s important to see them do well. Conversely, we had some more experienced girls false start, which is unacceptable.”
In the shot put, redshirt senior Anna Jelmini finished second overall with a best throw of 16.51m, and she was followed by teammate Alex Hartig, who threw a 15.28m for third place. Also for ASU, Ashley Weber threw for 14.51m and sixth overall.
For the men’s 800m, ASU finished 2-3-4-5, with sophomore Kyle Elliott leading the way with a time of 1:54.09. Redshirt sophomore Jesus Rivera finished third at 1:54.40, followed by fellow redshirt sophomore Trevor Landry at 1:56.11. Rounding out the ASU runners was sophomore Blake Elliott, who clocked in at 1:58.12.
In the men’s long jump, Josh Dixon placed eighth with a best jump of 6.80m while Jordan Benesh jumped a 6.55m. For men’s shot put, redshirt freshman Thomas Anderson finished in third courtesy of a throw of 17.66m.
ASU capped off the night’s races with wins in both the men’s and women’s 4x400m relays. On the men’s side, Keith Cleveland, Trae Armstrong, Daveon Collins, and William Henry finished at 3:12.18, while the women’s team of Sara McDonald, Alycia Herring, LaTroya Franklin, and Brianna Tate finished at 3:40.91.
“I think there’s a lack of a sense of urgency, which comes with having so much youth on these teams, and it’s up to us as coaches to instill that sense of urgency as the season progresses,” Kraft said.
Up next, the Sun Devils will return to Flagstaff for the NAU Invitational, Jan. 24-25.