A trio of throws takes top two at Kroughs

by David McCoy

Three throwers on Minnesota’s women’s track and field team grabbed the top two places in three events at the Lee Krough Invitational on Friday at Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter.

That might make for some confusing math, but it also made for a pretty good Friday.

In her first competition of the season, Minnesota sophomore Liz Podominick won both the shot put and the discus, qualifying for the NCAA Regionals in both events.

“(Qualifying) wasn’t really a goal, but I was pretty confident I could do it,” Podominick said. “I definitely threw how I wanted, at least in the sense of technique for the beginning of the year.”

Podominick threw 49 feet, 4 1/2 inches in the shot put and 167 feet, 9 inches in the discus.

Minnesota senior Jessica Stephan placed second behind Podominick in the discus with a new personal-best throw of 166 feet, 10 inches, also qualifying for regionals.

Stephan won the hammer throw with an effort of 166 feet, 5 inches.

Right behind Stephan in the hammer throw and Podominick in the shot put was sophomore Laura Brummer, who took second in both events with throws of 44 feet, 6 1/4 inches and 156 feet, 7 inches, respectively.

Senior Harper McConnell joined Podominick and Stephan at the top with a first-place finish in the 5,000-meter run with a time of 18:14.89. Katie Howery placed third with a time of 18:41.08.

In the 3,000-meter steeplechase, Jen Hess placed second in 11:25.60, followed by Carie Steil in fourth at 11:53.65 and Jena Trask in fifth at 12:06.18.

Six other Gophers athletes placed in the top five in seven events.

Maggie Jaunich placed second in the high jump and third in the javelin, while Natalie Timmers took third in the 1,500-meter and Ashly Gerjets took fourth in the 800-meter.

Three Minnesota athletes took fifth – Candace Borgen in the 400-meter, Brianna Polus in the high jump and Diana Berlinerblau in the 5,000-meter.

Men qualify seven

Apparently, that foot’s just fine.

After missing two weeks of competition with tendonitis in his right foot, junior Aaron Buzard won the 400-meter with a new personal best time Saturday at the Sun Angel Classic in Tempe, Ariz.

Buzard’s 46.01 second sprint clocked him in at the fourth fastest time in school history and qualified him for NCAA Regionals.

For the first time all season, senior Karl Erickson wasn’t the first-place finisher in the shot put and discus.

Erickson improved his regional qualifying time in the shot put, placing fourth with a season-high throw of 61 feet, 9 3/4 inches. He also placed second in the discus with a throw of 189 feet, 4 inches.

High jumpers John Albert and Kevin Netzer both qualified for regionals Saturday.

Albert won with a height of 7 feet and a half inch – the first time a Minnesota jumper bettered seven feet so far this outdoor season. Netzer was second, clearing a height of 6 feet, 10 3/4 inches.

Senior Trent Riter won the 800-meter in his first time in the event this season, posting a time of 1:49.75 and qualifying for NCAA Regionals. Walter Langkau also qualified with a sixth-place finish.

And Derek Gearman rounded out the regional qualifiers, placing third in the long jump with a 24 foot, 1 1/2 inch leap.