June 19, 2003
The University of Notre Dame men’s and women’s track and field teams will be represented by three different competitors at this weekend’s USA Track and Field Championships in Palo Alto, Calif.
Three Irish All-Americans, Tameisha King, Molly Huddle and Luke Watson, will compete against the United States’ top athletes in their specialty events.
King will enter the women’s long jump at 11:50 a.m. on Saturday, June 21. Watson will hit the track on Friday, June 20, at 9:00 p.m. in the men’s 5,000 meters. Huddle will run in the junior women’s 3,000 meters on Sunday, June 22, at 6:00 p.m. All times are local in Palo Alto.
King is hoping to continue her outstanding performance at the NCAA Championship in Sacramento, Calif., last week. The Mableton, Ga., native finished third in the long jump with a 6.48m (21-3 1/4) effort for her fourth career All-America citation and third outdoor certificate. The third-place finish tied JoAnna Deeter (10,000 meters, 1999) for the highest-ever finish for an Irish female athlete at the NCAA outdoor meet.
Huddle is hoping to carry over some momentum from the NCAA Championship as well. The freshman from Elmira, N.Y., capped her stellar cross country/track and field season with her third All-America honor of the year. After helping the women’s cross country team to a third-place finish at the NCAA Championship in the fall with an All-America finish, Huddle followed up with a ninth-place effort in the indoor 3,000 meters. For the outdoor season, she chose to concentrate on the 5,000 meters, eventually setting the U.S. Junior record in the event at the Mt. SAC Relays (15:36.95). Huddle then finished fourth in the 5,000 meters at the NCAA Championship last week, finishing the race in 15:55.96.
This weekend at the USATF Juniors she will run in the 3,000 meters.
Watson wrapped up his outstanding Irish career last weekend by finishing ninth in the 5,000 meters at the NCAA Championship to earn the eighth All-America honor of his career (just one off the Notre Dame record of nine posted by former teammate Ryan Shay). Watson achieved national notoriety with his outstanding 3:57.83 school-record setting indoor mile effort during the Meyo Invitational in February. He briefly held the fastest mile time in the world during the indoor season and eventually earned All-America honors in the indoor mile and indoor 5,000 meters. Watson also took time out during the track and field season to qualify for the USA Cross Country National Team. He was named the MONDO Great Lakes Regional Track Athlete of the Year on March 12, 2003.
A full recap of all three athletes performances this weekend will be posted on www.und.com.