Track & Field |
Jan. 3, 2006
Jan. 3, 2006
The men's team will be lead by Kenny Wade in the 100 and 200 meter dashes. Wade was a 2004 NCAA qualifier in the 200 and holds the school record in the event. Senior Bob Kandell returns from an injury that severely limited his effectiveness in 2005. He will be counted on to lead the Bearcats' deep field of sprinters. UC will field a young hurdles squad, with Brandon Wright and Scott Maze being the only proven hurdlers. A host of newcomers, including two-time state champion freshman Troy Lammers, will be expected to contribute.
The women's team will be lead by Erin Leeper, a converted heptathlete, who will concentrate on the sprints this season. Jammie Jackson, Ashley Ogletree and Jasmine Smith will also be counted on for points. The women's team will also feature youth in the hurdles, as juniors Candice Hill and Danielle Erwin and sophomore Monica Hundley anchor the squad. Freshmen Cory Huber and Crystal Miller will also be counted on to contribute.
The men's 800 meters is one of the deepest events on the team. Sophomore Alex Ramsey, junior Patrick Starkey and senior Jake Richards each have the ability to win a BIG EAST championship. Freshman Zach Webb, an All-Ohio selection in high school, will add depth. Brad Neuman returns from injury to pace the 1,500 meters.
The women's 800 and 1,500 meters will be led by Jocelyn Gibson, who placed eighth in each event at the Conference USA Outdoor Championships in 2005. The senior also placed fifth in the 800 at the indoor championships.
The men's distance events will be another point of emphasis this season, as a couple of newcomers look to make a big splash. Sophomore transfer John Dixon (5,000 meters) and freshman Solomon Kessio (5,000, 10,000) will be expected to contribute at the BIG EAST Chamoionships. Senior Taylor Garvin is UC's best in the steeplechase.
For the women, senior Karen Berling will lead a young distance unit that includes several freshman. Junior Cristy Doll and sophomore Nichole Leslie will pace the Bearcats in the steeple, after finishing 10th and 11th, respectively, at the C-USA Championships last season.
Two regional qualifiers return for the men in the form of Chandler Groves (long jump) and Andrew Smith (high jump). The long jump should be a strength as Groves, Bob Kandell and Cameron Widget all are potential regional qualifiers. The high jump will feature Smith and Justin Bending, who also has the ability to regionally qualify. The Bearcats may struggle to score in the triple jump after losing Phill Joseph, the sqaud's top triple jumper in 2005. Groves and Patrick Dunn will try to pick up the slack. The pole vault, an event in which UC is traditionally strong, will be solid once again. Seniors Dan Albrinck and Chad Beamer are both capable of meeting the regional qualifying standard and should place at the BIG EAST Championships.
The jumping events should also be a strong suit for the women, as Renee Hein (high jump), Ashley Wilhelm (long jump), Shintara Carpenter (triple jump), Brittany Klima (pole vault) and Tara Meier (pole vault) each return as UC record-holders. Hein competed in the NCAA Championships and is joined in the high jump by Klima. Wilhelm, Erin Leeper and Ije Obiorah will score in the long jump, while Carpenter and Obiorah are expected to solidify the triple jump. Meier and Klima each have the ability to meet qualifying marks in the pole vault and should place in the BIG EAST Championships.
Conference USA shot put champion Steve Kahle returns to lead the Bearcat throws. Sophomore Mike Mockbee, who placed fifth at the C-USA Championships, returns to anchor the discus. Justin Salamon (hammer, discus, javelin) and Jason Cumberlander (shot) will be counted on for points. The Bearcats will welcome back John Caplinger, a 2003 regional qualifier in the shot put, after a one-year hiatus. Newcomers Josh Fishback and Bryan Hardesty will add depth to one UC's strongest areas.
Although the Bearcat women lose Jo Young, the school's record holder in four throwing events, UC may be getting someone even better in freshman Lisa Klotz. Klotz is expected to surpass Young's marks in the shot put and could score in the BIG EAST Championships in her first season. Senior Jennifer Myers will try to make a name for herself after spending the last three years in the shadow of Young. She is the top returner in the discus and will contribute in the shot and hammer throw. Renee Hein, UC's record holder in the javelin, returns along with Ashley Wilhelm, who's record Hein broke in 2005.
The men have produced three NCAA-caliber decathletes in the last two years, including All-American Chris Wineberg in 2004. This year's crop is short on experience, but long on talent. Senior Patrick Dunn and sophomore Keller Schnier are the top two decathletes entering the season. Dunn finished eighth in last year's C-USA decathlon, while Schnier redshirted in 2005 to prepare for this season.
Senior Ashley Wilhelm provisionally qualified for the NCAA Championships last season in the heptathlon, but just missed out on a trip to the championships. She returns as the school record holder in both the pentathlon and heptathlon and will be a force in 2006. Sophomore Barb Roberson and freshman Dannele Speakman will add depth to the women's multi events.
Led by Bob Kandell, Lonnie Irving, Cedric Powell, Jerod Batt and Keith Hamilton, the men's 4x400 relay team has a legitimate chance to qualify for NCAA competition. The 4x800 squad, an event featured at the BIG EAST Championships will be another strong point for the Bearcats as Alex Ramsey, Patrick Starkey, Jake Richards and Brad Neuman complete the team.
The women's relays will be led by the tandem of Erin Leeper and Jammie Jackson. Dominique Davis, Jasmine Smith and Ashley Wilhelm will also contribute in the relay events.