TUESDAY, MAY 11, 2010
Prelude to the A-Sun Outdoor Championships: JU throwers & distance preview
The JU track & field team is just three days away from competing at the Atlantic Sun Conference Outdoor Championships for a shot at the Dolphins’ fifth straight title and becoming the first team to win the conference “Triple Crown” (cross country, Indoor & Outdoor Track titles). In today’s event preview, we will look at the throwers and the distance runners.

Juniors Laura Phillips and Hillary Crook as well as freshman Sara Schunter and sophomore Cathy Agoris all look to record championship throws this weekend.

The group had plenty opportunities to get ready for the conference championships after competing in eight different meets during the outdoor season.

Phillips has been one of the top throwers in the outdoor season after recording a school-record toss of 162’8” (first) in the hammer at the UNF Ospreys Challenge on April 17. She also had a team-best throw of 136’11” in the discus at the Spike’s Classic (4/2) in Daytona Beach, Fla. Last year at the A-Sun outdoor meet, Phillips placed second in the discus (135’11”) to lead the JU throwers.

Crook posted the top two throws in the shot put at the Seminole Invitational (44’9.5”) and JU-UNF Dual (44’3.25”), while Schunter and Agoris improved on their throws in each meet this year.

Head Coach Ron Grigg on the throwers: “The throwing events at the A-Sun meet are the most improved and competitive event area. We have a strong group of women who will compete for individual conference championships and all-conference honors in each event. We will rely heavily on them to keep the meet close until we get to the track events.”

The distance group is a large reason why the Dolphins are just one championship away from becoming the A-Sun’s first “Triple Crown” winner.

The group opened the year by having six of the top 14 runners to help secure the Dolphins first A-Sun cross country championship in October.

Two of those championship pieces, sophomore Anastasia Fokina and freshman Joane Pierre, has excelled for JU in the outdoor season.

Pierre has competed and won all three of her 800-meter races this season, including breaking the school record with a time of 2:08.17 at the Tom Jones Invitational on April 17th. She broke the 1,500-meter record for the second time this season at running a 4:29.10 (sixth) at the FSU Twilight on May 9.

Fokina also recorded two different school-record times in the 1,500-meter, but was a little overshadowed by Pierre each time. She ran a time of 4:30.00 at the FSU Twilight for eighth over the weekend. Fokina did break the 13-year 3,000-meter record after running a time of 9:54.90 to win the event at the JU-UNF Dual on April 29.

Other distance runners to watch this weekend will be seniors Elsabeth Goshu, Ali Ritter and Tiffanie Saxton along with sophomores Amalia Vogler and Susanne Klungtveit.

Goshu and Ritter were big keys to the Dolphins’ cross country title, while Saxton is looking to secure one more title before she leaves JU. Vogler is the defending outdoor champion in the 800-meter and Klungtveit is looking to win the 3,000-meter steeplechase for the second consecutive season.

Head Coach Ron Grigg on the distance runners: “Since our cross country championship in the fall, this group has continued to excel. Most of our distance records have fallen this year, and with four seniors in this group, we are expecting a great finale to their careers at the A-Sun meet.”