Jan. 26, 2000

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – – The Notre Dame 2000 indoor track season began last Friday when the Irish played host to Western Michigan, Ball State, and Michigan State at the Meyo Track and Field. The men’s team placed first with 174 points, 26 points ahead of Western Michigan (148). The women were barely edged out by Ball State 169-165 to finish second.

Long jumper Marshaun West (Sikeston, Mo.), who earned All-America status in 1999, started the season strong with a NCAA provisional leap of 25-4 1/2 in winning the long jump. Senior Chris Cochran (Crystal Lake, Ill.) won the men’s 60 meters in 6.78, leading a solid showing by the Irish in that race with junior Travis Davey (St. James, N.Y.) and freshman Tom Gilbert (Rock Falls, Ill.) also finishing in the top five. Cochran continued his winning ways in the men’s 200, taking home his second first place finish in 21.26, just one one-hundreth of a second off the NCAA provisional time. Gilbert and Davey were in the top 10 of the 200 along with junior Terry Wray (Brandon, Miss.). Senior Tim Kober (Gillette, N.J.) also won the men’s 600 in 1:19.88.

The Irish recorded two more NCAA provisional marks for the night when senior Phil Mishka (Toledo, Ohio) won the men’s 800 with a career-best time of 1:49.68. Sophomore Luke Watson (Stillwater, Minn.) also won the men’s 3000 meters with a time 8:09.50, an NCAA provisional time and the fastest so far this season in the BIG EAST. The Men’s 4×400 relay team capped off the night with a win in 3:16.78.

On the women’s side, freshman Jamie Volkmer (Kearney, Neb.) made quite an impression in her debut with the Irish. Volkmer set school records in the pole vault, clearing 11-0, and the triple jump, when she placed third with a jump of 39-3. Fellow freshman Tameisha King (Mableton, Ga.) also had a first-place finish in her first appearance, winning the women’s long jump and setting a new school record with a jump of 19-5.

All-American Jennifer Engelhardt (Battle Creek, Mich.) continued the team’s success in the field events by notching a first place in rhe women’s high jump. Engelhardt’s mark of 5-10 was Notre Dame’s fourth NCAA provisional mark of the meet.

In the running events, sophomore Liz Grow (New Braunfels, Texas) joined Cochran as a double-event winner for the Irish. Grow won the women’s 60 (7.74) and 200 (24.74) meters. Grow ran the fastest times in the 60, 200, and 400 for the Irish last season.

HOOSIER BOUND: Both teams will travel to Bloomington, Ind., for a dual meet with Indiana University on Friday, Jan. 28 at 6 p.m. The men will look to avenge an 84-78 loss to the Hoosiers at the Meyo Track a year ago, while the women defeated Indiana last year, 82-78. Marshaun West had an impressive performance against IU last season with wins in the 200 meters and the long jump, while Phil Mishka and Tim Kober also hope to repeat with wins in the 600 and 800 meters, respectively.

Liz Grow had a double win versus Indiana last year in the 200 and 400 meters, setting a school record in the 400 which she went onto break again later in the year. Sophomore Hilary Burn (Ottawa, Ont.) won the 800 meters last season versus the Hoosiers and senior Patty Rice (Mishawaka, Ind.) took first place in the women’s mile run.

IRISH ON TOP: In this week’s BIG EAST top times list published Wednesday, a Notre Dame track and field member ranks first in six events. Leading the way is Chris Cochran who is first in the 60 meters and the 200 meters (21.26). Classmate Phil Mishka is first in the 800 meters (1:49.68), while Luke Watson has the fastest time in the 3,000 (8:09.50). In the field events, Marshaun West once again leads in the long jump (25-41/2), while teammates freshman Nathan Cahill and sophomore Josh Heck both cleared a BIG EAST best 15-6 at last Friday’s meet.