March 27, 2001
Notre Dame men’s track and field team
First weekend of 2001 outdoor season
Arizona State Invitational, Tempe, Ariz.
Stanford Invitational, Palo Alto, Calif.
Purdue Open, West Lafayette, Ind.
Fri., March 30 – Sat., March 31
Irish begin the 2001 outdoor season at three different venues: The University of Notre Dame men’s track and field team will split in three directions during the first weekend of competition in the 2001 outdoor season.
A limited number of Irish distance runners will travel to Palo Alto, Calif., to compete in the Stanford Invitational. A larger, but still limited squad will be in Tempe, Ariz., this weekend for the Arizona State Invitational. The rest of the men’s team will head to West Lafayette, Ind., for the Purdue Open.
The team is hoping to carry the momentum from its first BIG EAST outdoor team title at the 2000 conference championship into the 2001 outdoor season. The Irish placed first with 164 points last season and will need a number of underclassmen to continue the improvement they displayed during the indoor season for the team to repeat its BIG EAST championship.
The Irish return a number of their top performers from last season’s outdoor team. Senior Travis Davey (St. James, NY) will compete in the 100 meters, an event in which he finished sixth in the BIG EAST last year and posted a top outdoor time of 10.57 in the preliminaries of the meet.
Cross country All-American and Verizon/CoSIDA District V Academic All-American Pat Conway (Springfield, Va.) returns this season to run the 1,500 meters after posting a top time of 3:50.72 last year.
Quill Redwine (San Antonio, Texas) should be among the leaders in the high jump this season and will be joined by junior Andrew Cooper (Granville, Ohio), who is coming off a spectacular finish to the 2001 indoor season. Cooper won the high jump competition at the BIG EAST indoor championship and continued his strong performances by clearing 6-8 3/4 at the Alex Wilson Invitational (March 3).
Redwine will compete in the triple jump as well – teaming with freshman Godwin Mbagwu (Petersburg, Va.) who posted some impressive marks during the indoor campaign this year.
Four-time All-American Ryan Shay (Central Lake, Mich.) will have the opportunity to run his signature race, the 10,000 meters, during the outdoor season. Shay established himself as one of the top collegiate 10,000-meter specialists by finishing 10th at the U.S. Olympic Trials last summer. He was the only runner among the top 10 in that race that still held collegiate eligibility.
Shay is coming off an All-American performance at the 2001 NCAA Indoor Championship (ninth place finish in the 5,000 meters) and owns the school record in the 10,000 meters of 28:26.91 (run at the 2000 Mt. SAC Relays). Notre Dame’s distance corps will feel the loss of steeplechase specialist Luke Watson (Stillwater, Minn.) this season. The school record holder in the event, Watson injured his meniscus while training for the indoor season and will not return to competition for this year’s outdoor slate. The throws group will be led by junior Derek Dyer (Huntington, Ind.) who owned the top shot put mark in 2000 (52-10 1/4) and also is the top returning discus specialist (175-7). Both Mike Madigan (Butler, Pa.) and Matt O’Brien (Bryceville, Fla.) return to the javelin competition this year, O’Brien boasting a toss of 189-10 last season.
List of competitors for this weekend’s meets:
Stanford Invitational: Jennifer Handley, Chrissy Kuenster, Todd Mobley, Sean McManus and Ryan Shay.
Arizona State Invitational: Ayesha Boyd, Kristen Dodd, Liz Grow, Megan Johnson, Tameisha King, Kymia Love, Jill VanWeelden, Jaime Volkmer, James Bracken, Andrew Cooper, Travis Davey, Derek Dyer, Tom Gilbert, Mike Madigan, Godwin Mbagwu, Matt O’Brien, Kevin Somok, Sean Zanderson.