May 4, 2012
TAMPA, Fla. -
In a team competition where each event makes the difference, the University of Louisville track and field teams capitalized on day one of the BIG EAST Outdoor Track and Field Championships at the USF Track and Field Stadium in Tampa, Fla.
Amashi Kendall, Patrice Gates and Holly Knight combined to deliver 24 points Friday, as Kendall set a personal-best to win the hammer throw competition, Gates took second and Knight rolled to a third-place showing in the 10,000m. On the men's side, Mattias Wolter, Gordon Dooley and Brad Vivace supplied the Cardinal men with 17 points.
Participating in the first uncombined event of the day, Kendall launched her third toss in the hammer throw a personal-best 59.35m/194-9. Kendall led heading into the finals, and despite not improving, captured the win for her first career outdoor title to give the Cardinal women their sixth-straight champion in the women's hammer throw at the league championships. The junior's mark ranks in the top-30 nationally and in the top 15 in the region. Gates also posted a personal-best (57.63m/189-1) in the event to finish second, providing Louisville with its third 1-2 finish in the last four years.
Knight, an All-American in the 10,000m, opened the race with a steady pace, working her way to third early in the competition. After six laps, Knight broke away from the pack and, at one point, ran a 5:15 mile. However, with approximately five laps to go, Syracuse's Sarah Pagano and Notre Dame's Gabriella Gonzales, caught up and overtook Knight for first- and second-place finishes, respectively. Knight, who set the school record earlier this year, finished the race in 34:58.08, the fourth-fastest time in school history.
In the 3,000m steeplechase, Wolter entered the race with the second-fastest conference mark. Showing a similar mentality from the 2011 championships, Wolter worked his way from the middle of the pack toward the front three laps into the race. While Dooley maintained the No. 4 position, his eventual finish, Wolter appeared to be the favorite to win the race. Syracuse's Pat Dupont remained on Wolter's shoulder for a majority of the race, and with less than 10 meters to go, outkicked Wolter for the win by less than a second. A sophomore, Wolter completed the race in 8:50.00, while Dooley set an 11-second personal-best, clocking a time of 8:58.90.
Vivace, who has the eighth-best shot put mark in the conference and is slated to compete in the event on Saturday, registered a personal-best in the hammer throw to finish fifth behind a toss of 54.25m/178-0.
The Cardinals resume action at the BIG EAST Championships on Saturday, May 5, at 2:30 p.m., with the women's javelin.
For all of the latest information on Louisville cross country and track and field, log on to UofLsports.com, or, for up-to-the-minute updates, follow the team's Twitter account at www.twitter.com/louisvilletrack.
BIG EAST OUTDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPS (TAMPA, FLA. - USF TRACK AND FIELD STADIUM)
Women's Hammer Trials and Final
1. Amashi Kendall - 59.35m/194-9
2. Patrice Gates - 57.63m/189-1
15. Hannah Baker - 49.90m/163-8
Men's Hammer Trials and Final
5. Brad Vivace - 54.25m/178-0
Sam Bombaugh - FOUL
Women's 3,000m Steeplechase Final
19. Cassie Martin - 11:51.49
Men's 3,000m Steeplechase Final
2. Mattias Wolter - 8:50.00
4. Gordon Dooley - 8:58.90
Women's 10,000m Final
3. Holly Knight - 34:58.08