Bearcats Eye Big Prize As Outdoor Season Kicks Off

GOBEARCATSDOTCOM Senior pole vaulter Mackenzie Fields
GOBEARCATSDOTCOM
Senior pole vaulter Mackenzie Fields
GOBEARCATSDOTCOM
Track & Field |

March 15, 2012

This is part two in a two-part series previewing the 2012 UC Track and Field Teams. To read part one, click here.

By Shawn Sell

Looking to build upon the momentum gained from a program-best runner-up finish at the BIG EAST Indoor Championships, the UC Women's Track and Field squad opens its outdoor campaign this weekend with an eye on an even bigger prize--a BIG EAST Championship. And with a team built around two reigning All-Americans and multiple postseason qualifiers from a year ago, head coach Susan Seatonis confident entering the 2012 campaign.

Seaton's reasons for optimism start with seniors Jasmine Cotten and Kathy Klump, both recently named All-Americans at the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships. Cotten is UC's top performer in the heptathlon and is also a force in the open long and high jumps. Klump meanwhile, is a two-time All-American in the 800 meters. Despite enjoying outstanding senior seasons during indoor, both have their eye on loftier accomplishments according to Seaton.

"They both did amazing at the BIG EAST Championship and at the national indoor championship," Seaton says. "When we were out in Boise (at NCAA's), we talked about what they want for the outdoor season. They both want to get back to the national championships and better their place outdoor versus what they were able to achieve indoors. Jasmine would like to be higher up on the podium and so would Kathy; that is a big goal for them.

"We also talked about the Olympic Trials; that is a big challenge since this is an Olympic year and they are pretty close to getting Trials qualifying marks," she continues. "That is one thing they want to focus on during the outdoor season, competing in a way that allows them to achieve those marks so they can represent UC at the Olympic Trials at the end of the season."

While Cotten and Klump are sure to contribute their share of points throughout the year and at the BIG EAST Championships, it obviously will take a team effort to capture the conference's top spot. One of the other strengths of the Bearcat roster is the pole vault, where three athletes qualified for the NCAA First Round meet last season. Senior (and UC outdoor record holder) Mackenzie Fields leads a contingent that also includes classmate Michelle Eby and sophomore Sarah Rasnick. Seaton is counting on big things from that group throughout the spring.

The Bearcats also boast solid depth amongst its group of throwers and the addition of an international student-athlete should make that group even stronger. Leading the charge amongst the returnees are sophomores Mary Bridges, Jessica Molyet and Frida Akerstrom, all NCAA First Round qualifiers from a year ago. Bridges is the school record holder in the discus and was joined at the NCAA prelims by Molyet. Akerstrom are both poised for more improvement after qualifying for postseason in the shot put last year. A native of Sweden, Akerstrom will be joined by fellow Swede Emelie Larssonon the UC roster this year. If Larsson's past performance in the javelin throw is any indication, the Bearcats may have a star on their hands. Junior Jessica Cobb, an NCAA First Round qualifier a year ago, will miss the season due to surgery.

"Emelie's mark from last year was 169'-2" and that would have placed in the top-three of the conference and also been an All-American," Seaton says. "We are looking to see if Emelie can adjust to competing in the United States and go out and be a big factor for us."

Rounding out the list of returning postseason qualifiers Seaton will lean on is senior Paris Campbell in the hurdles and classmate Aricka Rhodes in the 400 meters. Two other performers that could be potential point scorers include junior sprinter Shanay Portis, senior middle distance runner Jenna Heaton and UC's top performer during cross country season last fall, senior Alison Zukowski.

As the 2012 outdoor season gets ready to start for the UC Women's Track and Field team, the defining storyline looks to be can the team keep the momentum of the program's best-ever BIG EAST Championship finish going. One thing is for sure, the Bearcats certainly have the motivation to carry it on.

"One thing that is really interesting about our team is when we finished second at the BIG EAST Championship by half a point over Villanova, immediately the team started talking about outdoor and wanting a different trophy--the one with number one on it," Seaton says. "That is a big focus and what everyone is talking about in practices. They are working hard so that we can hopefully challenge for a team championship at the outdoor BIG EAST meet."

The Bearcats' quest for BIG EAST glory begins on Saturday with the Early Bird Relays, inside Gettler Stadium on UC's campus. Other highlights on the docket include the Oliver Nikoloff Invitational at Gettler Stadium (March 30-31), the All-Ohio Championships at Miami (April 20-21) and the Drake Relays (April 27-28). The 2012 BIG EAST Championship will take place May 4-7 in Tampa, Fla.


 

 

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Gunner Kiel impresses at UC football's spring game

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Youthful UC can make its own history next season

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC's defense makes statement in latest scrimmage

    FanIQ.com

    Remember Gunner Kiel? He's Ready to Dominate

    SportsIllustrated.com

    Hank Hughes Q&A

    New York Times

    Growing as a Player, Beaming as a Father

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    NCAA Tournament is 'Cincinnati vs. the world'

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Kiel comes out strong in Bearcats' spring scrimmage

    Sporting News

    2013-14 Men's Basketball All-Americans

    Fox Sports

    Cincinnati made me a believer

    CBS Sports.com

    Former redshirt Sean Kilpatrick finishing out historic career

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Q&A with UC AD Mike Bohn

    ESPN

    Brennan's Wooden Watch: Week 14

    MLSSoccer.com

    Fit and healthy, Omar Cummings offering a new dynamic up top for Houston Dynamo

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Men's soccer signee Clark named Gatorade Ohio player of the year

    ESPN

    Munchie Legaux and Shaq Washington gain extra year

    Denver Post

    Mike Bohn eager to point Cincinnati Bearcats in right direction as AD

    The Washington Post

    No. 7 Bearcats have highest ranking in 10 years

    Yahoo! Sports

    How Sean Kilpatrick willed UC past Louisville and back into the nation's consciousness

    SI.com

    Cincinnati takes over AAC with win at Louisville

    ESPN.com

    Tough Bearcats don't get rattled

    ESPN.com

    UC staves off Temple to stay perfect in AAC

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC looks to 15-year sports admin vet Reed-Francois for interim AD

    CBS Sports

    No. 15 Cincinnati stomps UCF, wins 11th straight

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats take down USF 61-54, win 10th straight

    USA Today

    Why Cincinnati is not a team to sleep on

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Short-handed Bearcats cautious about ranking

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC's goal: win them all at home

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Cronin: Not easy, but Cats got through fatigue

    The News Record

    What you missed in UC sports during break

    FB Schedules

    Boise State, Cincinnati Schedules 2019, 20 Home-and-Home Series

    Forbes

    The Best and Worst College Football Teams for the Money

    USA Today

    Report: Colleges doing poorly at hiring women coaches

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Randolph named AAC Player of the Week

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC women's basketball knocks off Ohio State

    Bleacher Report

    Belk Bowl 2013: Cincinnati-North Carolina

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Belk Bowl: UC vs. UNC

    ESPN

    Belk Bowl Breakdown

    BelkBowl.com

    The Showdown is Set

    ESPN

    Cards, Bearcats set for defensive battle

    CBS Sports

    Louisville-Cincinnati Preview

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Thursday is UC's fight for perception

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Don't let UC's next opponent fool you

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC jumps to No. 23 in USA Today football poll

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats break into USA Today Top 25

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    McKay turns in monster game against Rutgers

    ESPN

    Kay throws for 408 yards, 4 TDs as Cincinnati routs Rutgers

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats won't lessen the pressure

    News & Record

    Pressure takes toll on NC State against Cincinnati

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats face variety of bowl scenarios

    The News Record

    UC weary of SMU's aerial attack ahead of AAC clash

    Bleacher Report

    Best College Football Moments in Cincinnati History

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Mark Barr returns to UC, gets ovation

    HoustonDynamo.com

    After frustrating year, Omar Cummings puts Houston Dynamo on his back with clutch playoff goal

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC's Shaq Thomas 'our version of Herb Jones'

    USA Today

    Cincinnati holds off Memphis for third straight

    ESPN

    Cincinnati's Mark Barr out of hospital

    TopDrawer Soccer

    Furman and Cincinnati men go nose-for-nose in College Goal of the Week

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Green seizing his moment for the Bearcats

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats' Jermaine Lawrence is new breed of forward

    UC Magazine

    Hostility to Hope: Feature on Men's Soccer Player John Manga

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats' Jermiah Davis III fights to be remembered

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats' Justin Jackson goes from energizer to example

    The News Record

    Cronin excited for new group

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    UC Bearcats' Sean Kilpatrick: 'It's the season now'

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats basketball will have fresh look

    The News Record

    UC Looks to RetainVictory Bell for Eighth Consecutive Season

    Miami Herald

    Kay Ready to Lead Bearcats into Rivalry Game

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Former Bearcat Thompkins making most of shot in NFL

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    New practice setup could benefit UC basketball

    ESPN.com

    Munchie Legaux out for season

    ESPN.com

    Cincinnati Rolls Past Purdue

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Bearcats defense puts up dominant effort

    American Athletic Conference

    2013 Team Previews: Cincinnati Bearcats

    Sports Illustrated

    Bowl projections: Cincinnati vs. North Carolina in the Russell Athletic Bowl

    Cincinnati Business Courier

    Bearcats sell out football opener against Purdue

    Cincinnati Enquirer

    Depth at defensive line still strong for Bearcats

    Bleacher Report

    Cincinnati Bearcats Football 2013 Team Preview

    UC Voted 2nd

    Coach Tuberville and his players discuss their reactions to being voted to finish 2nd in the inaugural season of the American Athletic Conference

    QB Timetable

    Coach Tuberville discusses his timetable to choose a starting QB with The Cincinnati Enquirer

    Thompkins at Patriots' Training Camp

    Former UC wide receiver, Kenbrell Thompkins, impressed many at Patriots' training camp 

    World University Games

    Sean Kilpatrick talks about his experience overseas

    World University Games

    Sean Kilpatrick talks about his experience overseas 

    Nippert Renovation Plan

    The Cincinnati Enquirer looks at the Nippert Stadium Project

    Cincinnati football's 'Crocodile Dundee'

    A former professional rugby player from Australia joins the Bearcat football team

    2013 Preseason 'Watch List' 

    Several Cincinnati Bearcats make 2013 national 'watch list'

    Sports Insider Today

    Young Cincinnati Team Looks to Improve in 2013 Amidst New Conference Setting

    ESPN Blog

    Cincinnati to play Pitt in December

    GoBEARCATS.com

    Former Bearcat Herman Qualifies for U.S. Open

    USA Today

    BearcatsTV Gets National Attention from USA Today's For the Win

    SportingNews.com

    Cincinnati Bearcats Baseball Earns Top Honors in Videobombing

    The Washington Post

    Cincinnati Bearcats Do the Best Postgame Interviews

    Fox Sports

    Bearcats Rock Postgame Interviews

    Philly.com

    Cincinnati Bearcats Revolutionize the Post Game Interview

    YardBarker

    You'll love this Cincinnati Bearcats Post Game Funny Business Compilation

    Philly.com

    Those guys having all the fun: An oral history of the Cincinnati baseball team's videobombs

    MSN Now

    This college baseball team wins the 'best interview' award

    ESPN.com

    Winn, Cincinnati run over Pittsburgh

    Cincinnati.com Bearcats Blog

    Cincinnati looks to sophomore RB Ralph Abernathy to increase production