ASU track and field takes week off before Mountain Pacific Meet

Before traveling to Seattle for the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Track and Field Championships on Feb. 28, the ASU men’s and women’s track and field team will be taking the week off, with some athletes traveling to Flagstaff for the NAU Tune-Up.

After what was the best weekend of the indoor season, according to coach Greg Kraft, the team will be looking to recover and prepare for the challenges ahead.

“This coming week, we have still some nagging injuries to address,” Kraft said. “We have some people that we have to be smart with.”
 
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Some of the “nagging” injuries on the team include ones to sprinters senior Daveon Collins and junior Sara McDonald.

While the team will not be competing in any official meets this weekend before the MPSF Championships, Kraft says that some members of the team will be traveling to Flagstaff to give them one more opportunity.

“We will take out pole vaulters up to NAU to compete,” Kraft said. “It gives them an opportunity to try to get another chance to qualify.”

Some names to keep in mind in that group of pole vaulters are redshirt senior Derick Hinch and senior Heather Arseneau. Both will continue to try to reach the mark necessary to qualify for the national meet.

“Derick and Heather and that group will go up there,” Kraft said. “And hopefully get another lifetime best and maybe that gets them to the national championships.”

Arseneau has broken her own personal record three times so far this season but has yet to reach a mark that would get her into the national meet. This opportunity in Flagstaff will give her one more chance to qualify for that meet in March.

The remainder of the team will be staying in Tempe to prepare for the weeks ahead in Seattle and in Albuquerque for the NCAA Indoor Championships starting March 14.

“The rest of the group will just be gearing up for our last training before the Mountain Pacific meet,” Kraft said.

In the national record book, redshirt senior Anna Jelmini put herself in to the top 10 with her performance this weekend. Jelmini recorded a throw of 16.86 meters in the shot put. That mark puts her at No. 8 nationally in the event.

Both the men’s and women’s relay team are now No. 19 in the nation with their times this weekend at the Don Kirby Invitational.

Junior Shelby Houlihan is now 11th in the nation in the mile race. Houlihan’s school-record-breaking run in the 3000-meter this weekend also puts her seventh in the nation.

With several personal records and a school record broken this past weekend in Seattle and Albuquerque, it seems the team is in good shape for some of the most important meets of the indoor season, particularly with this opportunity for injured athletes to rest.

Reach the reporter at wslane@asu.edu or follow him on Twitter @bill_slane