Event: Mondo Invite
Where: Hornet Stadium – Sacramento, Calif.
When: Saturday 10:30 a.m. (field), 1:30 p.m. (track)
Who to watch: Sophomore Alex Wilright decimated the field in the 400m hurdles at last week’s Cal-Nevada championships, clocking 50.60 to win by over a third of a second. That time is No. 3 in the nation this year, and Wilright is looking for even more.
“My next individual goal is to run 49 in the 400m hurdles,” Wilright said. “If I want to get on the podium at nationals, I know I will have to run sub 50.“
Don’t expect a 49 out of him this weekend, though, as Wilright will instead be contesting the open 400m to work on his speed. He will join sophomore Thomas Phillips, whose 51.25 in the 400m hurdles last week puts him in a tie for eighth in the nation.
Did you know? A total of seven Aggies are currently on the national leaderboard, with the short hurdlers fairing nearly as well as their longer counterparts.
Thanks to his dominating win in the 110m hurdles (13.88), junior Jazz Trice sits at No. 3 on the national list. Senior Polly Gnepa is tied for 13th.
On the field, junior Ben Nelson is in an 18-way tie for ninth in the high jump at 2.10m. Sophomore Ray Green sits at No. 14 in the triple jump (15.03m) while freshman Ethan Ostrom is in a 16-way tie for 21st in the pole vault (5.05m).
Preview: The 200m crew has been quiet so far this season, but all of that is about to change.
“Matt Council and Micah Grant are running their first 200m,” said women’s head coach and sprint coach Deanne Vochatzer. “That should be exciting.“
Grant is the school-record holder in the event, as he clocked 21.14 in 2007. He also sits at No. 3 in the 100m (10.57) and No. 9 in the 400m (48.30).
Council, who redshirted last season, was the seasonal No. 2 in the 100m (10.90), 200m (21.84) and 400m (48.64) in 2007. He was also part of last week’s school-record-setting 4x400m relay.
With these short sprinters joining the already impressive hurdlers, field eventers and middle distance runner Jon Sees, the Aggies look to turn some heads not only this weekend, but down the line as well.
“My goal for the team,” said Wilright, “is to win the Big West Conference Championship.“
– Alex Wolf-Root