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Quotes Sheet--2012 NCAA D1 Outdoor Track & Field Championships

Courtesy: Drake Athletics
         
Release: June 06, 2012
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Athlete and Coach Quotes
2012 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships
June 6-9, 2012 -- Drake Stadium -- Des Moines, Iowa

SATURDAY, JUNE 9, 2012

LSU Head Coach Dennis Shaver. His women's team won its 15th NCAA outdoor track and field team championship and first since 2008, which was his first as head coach and also at Drake Stadium.

On the team victory: "It is a team victory because a lot of time, it's actually those sixths, sevenths and eighths that actually end up putting you over the hump, and that's what happened here. We had some who were first and second and third, but we had some others [who scored below that]. So it's a tremendous team effort from everybody that allowed us to score a bundle of points. It took a lot of points to win this year, and I have to commend the University of Oregon. What a great job of competing they did, trying to win here too."

On how special this championship is: "You know, each one is a little bit different, but I can tell you that this group truly deserved to win this championship. They have done an outstanding job for us the entire outdoor season and have had tremendous focus throughout this seven-day NCAA track meet-three we had in Jacksonville and then four days here. They took care of it one day at a time-taking care of what it is that they needed to do each and every time they got on the track. And the end result is a title."

 

Mike Holloway, Florida Head Coach. His men's team won the 2012 NCAA Outdoor Championship by two points. This is Florida's first NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championship in history.

On finally obtaining the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championship:  "Unbelievable. It's an absolute blessing. I can't tell you how proud I am of this group of young men. We had a lot of adversity, not just this week, but throughout the year. You think about things, the people that weren't here, the people that didn't want to give you a chance but our guys never bought into it. I'm extremely proud of them."

On the adversity this year: "We lost our best sprinter, we lost our best decathlete, and our 4x100 didn't qualify. A lot of people would have given up hope, but our group of guys didn't. I set them down after the Regionals and I said 'We are still the best team in the country, as long as you believe it, and our guys believed it."

On Eddie Lovett: "That was huge for Eddie to come in, entered possible one of the best high hurdle fields in history and to be able to man up and get fifth place in that race, that was huge for us. That got us within striking distance and gave us a chance to win this championship."

On other key student-athletes: "Omar Craddock, yesterday, talking about overcoming adversity, was struggling a little bit with his steps, he got in the final and as I walked by he was like 'Coach, I got you' and his next jump was 55-6, that's what kind of kid he is. Tony McQuay, he was huge this weekend. His 400 helped us break a school record and today in the 4x400 he helped us win the national title. Jeremy Postin, is a fourth-year, red-shirt junior, a guy who in high school didn't even know what the hammer throw was, now he is number two in the country. They all just keep fighting, fighting, and I can't begin to tell you how proud of them I am."

On not having any seniors on the men's team: "I actually figured out on the plane that we had no seniors. Obviously, if we stay healthy, there is a bright future for the University of Florida."

 

Ganna Demydova, Sr., Southern Mississippi, champion, women's triple jump, NCAA Outdoor Championship record 46-7¼ (14.20m). Demydova was declared the champion after Andrea Geubelle of Kansas was found to have fouled upon video review on a longer jump in the finals.

On the surprise win after the competition was complete: "I still didn't realize I was the champion. I was really happy with my first attempt because I thought I was the champion with that attempt. It's my personal best and it was legal wind and I was just so happy. But that's probably what kept me from going further, because I was too relaxed."

On setting a new meet record jump: "I'm glad. It was great. I was actually planning to get to the 14.30 mark because that's the A-qualifier for the Olympics. I didn't do it, but I will still have a chance next week. So I'm really glad I jumped my personal best and had such a good result, even though I'm kind of upset I didn't make the A-qualifier."

On being an NCAA champion: "I haven't really realized it yet because I cannot feel anything right now. I'm shocked or something. But I'm really glad. I was really waiting for this condition. I was looking forward to it. I was really excited and I didn't even sleep real well because just too many things were happening. And right now, I'm just happy-really, really happy."

 

Phyllis Francis, So., Oregon, anchor leg of the women's 4x400-meter relay champion, 3:24.54

On her leg: "When I first got out, I wanted to keep up and float the first 200 a little bit and then save my energy for the last 200. Usually I would just run it all out and see how I feel-feel the competition out. I just wanted to ride on her until the last homestretch for this one, relaying for the win."

About the team's performance: "I think we did really well. I'm really proud of what my team did. I have to thank Laura (Roesler) for giving me the baton in a good space. I have to thank English (Gardner) for doing such a great opening and Chizoba (Okodogbe) for catching people.  I could have never have done it without her. I'm really proud of the outcome."

About the close competition: "It was getting kind of close. I started panicking a little bit 200 meters to go, but I started to take a couple of deep breaths and I calmed down a bit. Then I started picking it up the last 60 meters. It all played out."

 

Men's 4x400: Florida, (Dedric Dukes, Fr., Hugh Graham, Fr., Leonardo Seymore, Jr., Tony McQuay, Jr.), 3:00.02, which is a new Drake Stadium record and the second best time in the world and U.S.

Tony McQuay, anchor

On taking the lead in turn 3: "I was feeling it. I like lane four. It is a perfect lane for me. If you get the lead and when you go down the homestretch, you can see out in front of you."

On winning the team title: "We grabbed the hype and did what we need to do. We knew what the team standings were and we came together like a family, as a team. I trusted my first, second and third to get us here. We have a young team and to have them step up really means a lot to the program."

 

Abbey D'Agostino, So., Dartmouth, Winner, Women's 5,000 Meter, 16.11.34.

On how the heat affected the race: "I was trying to stay hydrated and cool before the race to help. We went out fairly slow. It was a really tactical race and the heat kind of lulled me and I almost missed my move that got me out into the front, but I heard my coach yell and went."

On the race: "There were some really big moves, and you kind of have to hate that. You don't want to do them because you know they'll tire you more, but at the same time you never want to get left behind or lose site of the lead pack."

 

Andrew Riley, Sr., Illinois, Winner Men's 110 hurdles, 13.53. Riley is the first male athlete to win both 100 meters and 110 hurdles in same championship year. Riley is a two-time NCAA champion in the 110 hurdles (2012, 2010). He finished second in 2011 and fifth in 2009 in this event.

On winning 100 H, 100 M: "When I started out this year it was something I wanted to achieve. I always set high goals for myself. This year I really wanted to be the first to do the double. A lot of hurdlers don't like to do the track work. I like the track work. I would actually like to do more track work than hurdles. It takes different technique to do the double."

On going to Illinois from Jamaica: "I had 10.8 speed and that is not fast enough to get a scholarship. I went to Illinois because they offered me a decathlon scholarship. It was my only way out."

 

Christina Manning, Sr., Ohio State, women's 100 hurdles champion, 12.89

On the race: "I was really ready. I was doing really good starts in warm-ups. I feel like here my start wasn't that great, so instead of panicking I just relaxed because I know that I'm the fastest in between and that I would be able to pick it up."

On the wind: "I just had to keep my head tucked. My coach was telling me about that yesterday and we actually came out here and we were practicing into the wind. We felt it was best to practice that way because we ran that way, so it's better to practice that way. I just did what I did in practice; kept my head tucked and my body low."

On her first NCAA Outdoor Championship: "It feels amazing. I'm a senior. I just want to take this home. I had to leave it all on the track. I wish that I could've run a better time, but you know its okay. I got the win, so that's good."

 

Maurice Mitchell, Sr., Florida State, men's 200 champion, 20.40
Mitchell defended his 2011 NCAA 200 meter championship.

On winning back-to-back titles: "I feel blessed. God has my back. I listen to my coaches and trust in my training and went out there and defended my title like I wanted to and I just thank God. I was really glad I was able to go out and defend my title."

On the team championship race: "It feels good to contribute to my team and get 10 points that the coaches were expecting."

On the 200: "I wanted to get out quick and run my race. My race is pretty simple - get out and run hard. I ran the run really head and got off the turn and ran strong down the home stretch against that head wind. I knew if I could get off the turn with the lead I could hold off the field. Everything just set up perfectly for me."

 

Donn Cabral, Sr., Princeton, men's 3000 steeplechase champion, 8:35.44

On the race: "It went according to plan. I knew someone else was going to take it out and I wanted to wait until I saw three laps to go. Then when I got on the back stretch I wanted to make a decisive move and make everyone else decide to go with or stay. (Henry) Lelei went with me and really pushed me, which helped. I knew he was a competitor and I need that to drive me to my best."

On the effect on his confidence: "It really helped. I've had an awesome year. I wasn't very happy with my prelims so this race helped to show I can bounce back."

 

Kimberlyn Duncan, Jr., LSU, repeat champion in women's 200, 22.86

On the race: "I feel like it was an okay race. I feel like it could've been better, but I know the main thing that affected me was the wind. I tried to execute at the beginning of the race. I kind of messed up on that a little bit, but I still feel like it was a good race. Especially depending on how the wind was blowing in our faces, so I wasn't expecting that at all. I still feel like it was a good race. I won so I scored 10 points for my team and my teammate did good so we're happy about that and helping our team to the title."

About defending her championship: "That, to me, is a wonderful feeling. I remember talking to my mom. She said, 'You know what you're doing. Go out here and just stay confident; continue what you're doing.' So I feel like that's what I did today. I came out trying to help my team score as many points as possible and I defended my title so I'm very happy about that."

 

Jordan Clarke, Jr., Arizona State, men's shot put champion, 20.40 (66-11 ¼)
Clarke was the 2011 NCAA Outdoor shot put champion.

On the competition: "I've never seen it that deep. It was a very close, tight competition for the first three rounds. It was a great meet, a lot of fun; a lot of good energy, the crowd was awesome."

On his throw progression: "My first one, I had a left sector foul, which was a little surprising for me, so I made an adjustment for my second throw to line up more. My second and third throws were good, so I had about an hour before finals. I stayed loose, stayed warmed up, I felt good. My fourth throw was 20.40, so that break was good for me."

On the Olympic trials: "This is kind of a stepping stone for me to get to the trials. American shot put is just amazing. The top five throws in the world right now are by Americans, so it's a little hard. I'm going to build from this. Nobody is expecting me to go in and finish top five or top three, so if I go in there and have a huge throw, great, if not, I just want the experience and the fun of competing with guys at such a high level."

 

Katie Flood, So., Washington, women's 1,500 champion, 4:13.79
Flood is a local Des Moines product and was a state champion at Dowling Catholic High School.

On how it feels to win: "It's surreal. It hasn't really sunk in yet. The race felt good though. I would have been more nervous when I was back near seventh if we had been going faster. My coach told me not to take the lead until 300 to go, and that's what I did."

On where this win ranks with her other big ones: "It's the best. A lot of work has gone into this one and it feels really good. It's great to be back at Drake. There's always a great crowd-rain or shine. I wasn't ranked that high coming into the meet, so it felt good to not have that much pressure earlier."

 

Takeia Pinckney, So., LSU, leadoff leg on the champion women's 4x100, 42.75

On the importance of starting the day with a good opening leg : "The first thing I had in mind was just get out, get out, get out-try to break the stagger and give the stick to Semoy (Hackett) first. We're trying to win nationals, so one thing we had on our mind was to win, whatever it took."

On her thoughts when she saw Kimberlyn (Duncan) cross the finish line: "It was just a happy moment. I just started jumping up and down and stuff because I knew we trained very hard in practice. Honestly, we wanted to get the record, 42.5, but you know things happen. I think we're all pretty happy with winning."

 

Andrew Bayer, Jr., Indiana, men's 1500 champion, 3:43.82
Bayer outran Miles Batty (BYU) by one hundredth of a second, diving across the finish line.

On the close finish: "Actually, last year I beat Lopez Lomong by one thousandth of a second, so I've had similar experiences, but an NCAA title wasn't on the line that time."

On coming away with the title: "I'm super excited; this is what I am going for at every NCAA meet. I was set up with 200 meters to go and I was like 'I'm not going to let this go, I'm going to fight to the end.' It worked out."

On passing Miles Batty back: "I came back and still pulled it off. I was trying to fight him, but I was just wasting energy doing that so I let him go by and tried to come back on him at the home stretch."

 

LSU (Barrett Nugent, Sr.; Aaron Ernest, Fr.; Keyth Talley, Sr.; Shermund Allsop, So.), men's 4x100 champion, 38.38
Tied the Drake Stadium record (4ecord: 38.38, Texas A&M, 2011)
NOTE: Nugent did not speak to run the 110 hurdles. Ernest to run the 200 meters and did not speak.

Shermund Allsop:
On the exchanges: "We have been working on our exchanges and have gotten better in the second half of the year. It's a matter of staying calm and hitting your marks."

Keyth Talley:
On the race: "Coach just wanted us to go out hard and hit our marks. We knew we had to run faster (than in prelims). We just wanted to execute, but did not think it would have to be much faster to win the race. We wanted to go out and run a smooth race. We had good
handoffs and that is what got us through."

 

FRIDAY, JUNE 8, 2012

Cameron Levins, Sr., Southern Utah, men's 5,000 champion, 13:40.05
Levins also won the 10,000 on Wednesday to become the first 5,000/10,000 winner in an NCAA meet since Oregon's Galen Rupp did it in 2009.

On winning his second NCAA title in three days: "I can't believe it. It was a tough, tough race."

On his strategy for the final lap of the race: "I was just aiming to sprint, basically. I was waiting for someone to make a move on me. I didn't quite do it at 200, and then Paul Chelimo came up on me and I'm like 'Okay, I have to go,' you know, he's going to get by me and have the advantage entering the final 100 meters, so I just held him off and gave whatever I could on the final 100 meters."

Jack Whitt, Jr., Oral Roberts, men's pole vault champion, PR of 18-6½ (5.65m)

On feeling some discomfort today: "I wouldn't say I was sick, but I definitely had a very sharp pain in my stomach. I don't know if it was nerves or something I ate, or lack of eating, but I'm just glad I did what I did and got the 'W' for Oral Roberts."

On the winning vault: "I was just happy that I brought my A-game today. I felt a little shaky in the first few bars, but I pulled it out when it mattered."

On winning with a knot in his stomach and doing more vaults than he's done all season: "It definitely took more vaults than I'm used to. I knew coming in, I had a pretty good shot, but I was going to have to jump my best. And last week at Oral Roberts, I jumped A [Olympic trials] standard; so you know I had a little bit of an edge on everybody else I could say. But everybody else came out and half the field PRed, so it took my best to pull it out."

 

Omar Craddock, Jr., Florida, triple jump champion, 16.92 (55-6 ¼)
Craddock is also the 2012 Indoor Champion in the triple jump.

On winning the championship: "It was fun. Like I've been saying this whole year, I have to be that guy to be number one, it's a lot of pressure, so I'm taking it in stride and doing what I have to do to be the number one. I've done it, indoors and out."

On learning from his competition: "I've learned how to continue to compete. Compete for myself and I can't worry about what they are about to do, I've got to worry about what I can do, what I know I can do, and just go out there and do it. Those are things that they did and it's something that I try to carry on, you know, just competing against yourself and always better yourself."

On what's next after two NCAA titles in the triple jump this year: "Now I'm the NCAA Champion outdoor and in, so I'm just going into the Olympic trials with one goal, getting on that team."

 

Tony McQuay, Jr., Florida, men's 400 champion, 44.58
2012 SEC champion, 2012 Indoor champion

On winning: "It feels great. It was a great day of competition. I woke up with a positive attitude. Came out here and gave all I got."

On the race not going as planned: "It didn't go as I expected. Some of the runners didn't do today what I thought they would so I had to change my way."

Last 100 meters: "Mike (Berry, Oregon) is a good runner. I ran yesterday and the others had some rest so I had that on my mind. I thought Mike was going to get out a little slower. He ended up getting out pretty good and finishing strong. He picked up around the curve. I knew I was going to be in trouble so I had to kick it in a little earlier than I wanted to. But I lived up to my training and finished strong."

Back-to-back titles: "There was a lot more competition this year. The competition just stepped up."

Olympic Trials: "I have some things to work on. I need more discipline. I need to stay more focused during my race. There is a lot to think about in the race. There are different phases you have to consider."

 

Ashley Spencer, Fr., Illinois, women's 400 champion, 50.95

On winning an NCAA title as a freshman on her birthday: "It feels great. I worked hard. I never expected I'd come out and do that. This is the best birthday ever."

On getting to the front over the last 100 meters: "The last 100 meters I knew I'd have to kick. I knew the other girls had real good finishes. I knew I had to push myself the last 100 meters and it paid off."

On her race strategy: "I wanted to conserve as much as I could without getting out of it and kick it in."

 

Tia Brooks, Jr., Oklahoma, women's shot put champion, 60-6
Brooks was also the 2012 NCAA Indoor Shot Put Champion earlier this year.

On the upcoming Olympic trials: "I'm excited. I mean, God willing and everything, and if I stay healthy, if it's my day, it's my day."

 

Brianne Thiesen, Sr., Oregon, women's heptathlon champion, 6,440 points
Her point total was a world best and the second best in NCAA Outdoor Championship history and the best since 1995.

On her day today: "Javelin and long jump have been the two events in practice that have been going the best for me, so I didn't really celebrate much when I did them today because I did that in practice. So I was excited to do those two events just because they have been going so well. It was nice to do one jump, get out; two throws, get out. It was awesome."

On her world best point total: "I'm so happy. I mean from going from being injured last year and my spirits were so down because I knew I really improved, it feels good to be myself and come back this year and do what I know I'm able to do."

On how perfect her performance was: "Oh yeah. I didn't think I'd even be doing this. You know, I said to Harry [her coach] right before the 800, 'How did I do this well? I haven't even trained.' But that's kind of how the events go. The harder you try - I mean, the shot put, the javelin - the worse they are. So it's kind of like I just went through the motions and didn't try and it was phenomenal."

 

Shalaya Kipp, Jr., Colorado, women's steeplechase champion, 9:49.02

On the championship run: "From the beginning of the race I went up to the front, I had my plan. I wasn't behind anyone so it wasn't blind to me. I didn't want any mishaps, to fall over a barrier or something. I had clear water jumps, so that was nice. Then about 800 meters to go Genevieve LaCaze came upon me, and she overtook the lead. I started to doubt myself. I wasn't sure if I could hold on, but with about 200 meters left I found something in me and was able to kick it home to the finish. You always want to be able to kick over that last barrier. You watch so many falls when people hit it. So we do a lot in practice and it paid off today."

On being the champion: "Oh my gosh. It feels incredible. I've dreamt about it for a long time, so now to actually have a national title feels really cool. When you actually do it, it's even better than you thought."

On being a steeplechaser at Colorado: "I didn't even really know what the steeple was until I got to Colorado. Then I watched my teammates and thought, 'Wow, that's a crazy event. I'm never doing it.' Then one day Mark Wetmore pulled me aside said, 'How about you try the steeple?' and I haven't
looked back since."

 

Brigetta Barrett, Jr., Arizona, repeat champion, women's high jump, 6-4 (1.93m)
Barrett has won both the NCAA indoor and outdoor championship in each of the last two years. She cleared 6-4 in all of her six outdoor meets this season.

On her winning day: "It's really hard sometimes when people are saying, 'Oh, you'll be in and others will be out before you're in.' But no, that's not fun. I was really proud of everybody [in the competition]. We started off with a really nice clear and everybody just seemed to chill, laugh and calm down. So I had a
really good day."

On just missing equaling Amy Acuff's NCAA record (6-5, 1.96m, 1995): "It's hard, on my gosh. It's such a mental thing. I really tried to get over it, but it's hard. Every meet I keep going at it, going at it [clearing 6-5 outdoors]. But you know, this is the most consistent I've ever been in my life getting over 6-4. This is the most consistent I've ever been in my life period. But I'm constantly growing and seeing my growth."

On her future Olympic plans: "I have a lot of expectations. I've been waiting for this year since my junior year in high school and I'm ready to go after it. There's no room for fear, doubt or anxiety. I just have to go in there and be really confident in my training and all God has done for me in my abilities, and the potential he has placed in me."

 

Nachelle Mackie, Jr., women's 800 champion, 2:01.06
Mackie is also the 2012 Indoor Champion in the 800 meters.

On taking the lead: "I don't usually like to lead. I thought (Channelle) Price would lead. At the turn it started getting clumpy and I did not want to get trapped in lane two. When she let me take the lead I had to rethink my race. I had to think mentally because I expected to be behind."

On the final stretch: "All I know is my legs were tightening up, so I was hoping I didn't fall. I didn't know where they were, but when I saw the times I knew they had to be right on my tail."

 

Charles Jock, Sr., UC Irvine, men's 800 champion, 1:45.59

On winning the title after finishing a close second last year: "It feels like redemption. I've played that video so many times - it must be 20 times this week. I came into this race focused."

On his mindset going into the race: "I was a little nervous before the race. But I knew I had it in myself to win. I've run the 800 so many times, instincts just took over."

On winning as a refugee from Sudan: "When I run I know I couldn't be here without the sacrifices my parents and family have made."

 

Andrew Riley, Sr., Illinois, men's 100 champion, 10.272
Riley finished two hundredths of a second over second place finisher Harry Adams of Auburn.

On the lean at end: "I knew I had it. I knew it would come down to the lean. I perfected the lean and got it this time. I knew Adams and Mitchell were right there. I might have been behind by eight meters (during the race) but I remembered my coach said to pump my arms and open those strides and I added my lean and got the win. I knew I had it."

On stating this would be his last 100: "When you are from Jamaica you can say that. We have like 10 people running 9.8s so it is kind of impossible with that talent. I have to stick to the hurdles. That's the only thing I can dominate right now. Or at least can try."

 

English Gardner, So., Oregon, women's 100 champion, 11.10

About your championship run: "I came in with a little bit of fire and a little bit of intensity because last year, I fell before the 100 and wasn't able to compete and perform like I knew I could. So I definitely had a lot of fire, a lot of intensity, a lot of anxiety on the line. From start to finish, it was just get because I knew that I had a great field amongst me and I was going to have to push and stay calm and stay relaxed throughout the race. That's something I executed and came out with a 'W.'"

On how it feels to be the champion: "It feels great. Not only am I the champion, but I'm the first 100- meter NCAA Champion for Oregon. I just found that out and that's amazing. You know it comes along with the accomplishments. I'm happy and I give all the thanks to God."

 

Cassandra Tate, Sr., LSU, women's 400 hurdles champion, 55.22

On the last 100 meters of the race, where she passed UCLA's Turquoise Thompson: "The one thing I wanted to do was make sure I kept my composure. You never know for sure. I wanted to make sure I ran out as strong as I could and not leave any room for error."

On her contribution to LSU's team effort: "It's huge to the team. We're in this for the team title. I'm glad I could contribute 10 points."

On finishing her collegiate career with a national title: "It was all or nothing as my time running in an LSU uniform came to an end. I gave it my all. I wanted to come out on top."

 

Amaechi Morton, Sr., Stanford, men's 400 hurdles champion, 48.79

On staggering after coming over the last hurdle; did your heart skip a beat?: "I did because I was coming over the last one and I came over with the right leg. I'm supposed to go with the left leg, so when I did I was like 'Oh, dang.' Just run, run and get past that line. I got passed it. I fell. I got bruises, but its cool man. I'm all dirty, a little green, and red from blood. I'm tired."

On being the champion: "Third, second, first; finally got the title. That was the plan this whole year since last year. Thank God I came in healthy and got through that. That was the main goal today. The time wasn't one of my fastest, but hey the time will come. Title is what is most important right now."

On the run: "I didn't get out like I should have. I lagged in the front part, steps were off. By no means was it a perfect race, but I don't care at this point. I won so that's all that matters in my mind."

On the trials: "Yes, that should be the next thing, but right now what's next is to go get something to eat."

 

Alexander Ziegler, Jr., Virginia Tech, repeat champion, men's hammer throw, PR of 248-8 (75.78m)

Ziegler repeated as champion on his fifth throw, which was the collegiate best this season.

On his winning throw: "All my throws were really solid today and I had really good technique, but I didn't hit the release and finish the throw. That's what my coach yelled. And I finally finished one with the fifth one and it felt like the release was higher. I felt as if I still had the energy on it and with the high release, I knew that it was going to go far. 

On the confidence of being the defending champion: "I was really confident in myself. I knew I could PR and I wanted to do it right here, and that's what it was."

On repeating as champion with a new PR: "That's awesome. I mean, I'm really glad. I was struggling a little bit [this season] and I kind of thought it was now or never. I felt really good in the prelims and after the break, I was able to refocus and I thought that would help me. I'm excited about that."


THURSDAY, JUNE 7, 2012

Natosha Rogers, JR, Texas A&M, Women's 10,000 champion, 32:41.63.

On winning: "This has been one of the biggest surprises of my life. I was thinking about all the hard work I put in all season long."

On the opening mile in 5:04: "I was glad the pace went out fast. I felt really comfortable and I stuck with it. I did not want to lead the race, but I was definitely ready to go."

On running a time of 4:57 the last mile: "I knew that I had a good kick, but I did not think I could run that fast. I did not think I had that in me, but I am glad that I did. When you want it more, I guess you have it. "

On contributing to A&M winning a team title: "I have really wanted to contribute to this team for a long time. We are a very successful team and I want to be a part of that. I put in the hard work for it."

 

Jonique Day, Sr., LSU, Winner Heat 3, anchor leg on women's 4x400-meter relay team that won Heat 1, 3:28.01 (fastest qualifying time)

About the team's performance in the 4x400: "Overall I think we performed very well. Each of us go out there and do our best. You know we ran the fastest time for the season, so that means all of us did our best. And then we came out to be successful as in having the fastest time going into the final. So I'm proud of that for all of us as a team because we all did well."

About her run: "Actually I've been doing this from the beginning of the season, so I'm an experienced runner on the anchor leg and I'm going to just hold my position. I'm going to go out there and I've just got to stay focused and then do whatever I normally do; so that's what I did."

On her thoughts going into the finals: "I feel confident, but we know it's going to be a tough competition. We're going to go and get prepared for it mentally, physically, and then we're going to go out there and do our best as in trying to get another PR for the end of the season."

 

Diamond Dixon, Sr., Kansas, anchor leg, women's 4x400-meter relay team that won Heat 2, 3:29.07 (second fastest time)

About the team's performance: "I feel like the ladies did great. Denesha (Morris) got out like she was supposed to. She relaxed and she brought it in as well as she could and that was awesome. Paris (Daniels) didn't give up throughout the whole race. She got out; she kicked it in even when they were up on her. She handled the pressure really well. Then when Taylor (Washington) got it, she just opened it up and did exactly what she had to do and brought it into me without giving up, because I had to get out."

On her thoughts going into the finals: "I feel great. We ran 3:29 so that's better than what we did last weekend. We all saw the other ladies run so we know we have to put the pedal to the medal and keep on pushing for Saturday so we can win it."

 

Laura Roesler, So., Oregon, third leg, women's 4x400-meter relay team that won Heat 3, 3:29.46 (third fastest time)

On her leg: "My job was to get us in the lead and keep us in the lead. That's not exactly how it panned out, but I did my best to make sure we were top two. Too bad I couldn't have got us in the lead, but I have total confidence in Phyllis (Francis). She didn't need us in the lead apparently. She needed a little challenge."

On Francis: "I could go on and on about Phyllis. I trained with her last year and let me tell you, the girl has talent like you wouldn't believe. You should be expecting great things from her in the next two days; trials and beyond. It's just amazing - just the raw speed she has."

 

 

Erik Kynard, Jr., Kansas State, winner men's high jump, 2.34 (7-8)
Kynard repeated as the NCAA Champion in this event.

On the attempt at 2.38 meters: "It was all or nothing. If I'm going to go out, I'm going to go out with a bang. I just thought I would put it up there and see what happened. I didn't expect it to look that high, honestly."

On his jumps: "It was a great competition all the way to the end. I kind of put myself in the hole early, once at 2.20 and twice at 2.28, but I just had to relax. I haven't been jumping a lot, everybody was thinking 'oh, he's hurt', but I knew where I was. I was able to jump pretty high in practice and I was bummed I missed those jumps, but it all played out well."

On the competition with Derek Drouin (of Indiana): "Derek Drouin is an amazing jumper and I have a lot of respect for him. I knew it was going to come down to the two of us at the end."

On the Burger King crown he was sporting during this interview: "This is what I ate before I came here. I figured as long as I was the defending national champion, I thought it was fitting. I figured if someone was going to de-throne me I'd have a crown to pass on to them."

On the Olympics: "I've qualified. That's it. That's what's next and I'm not looking to have any misses there. I haven't jumped much outdoors, so I'm just trying to get things in order and go clean. I already believe I'm making the Olympic team. I'm just going to compete and do my best."

 

Penn State (Aaron Nadolsky, So., Brandon Bennett-Green, So., Casimir Loxsom, Jr., Brady Gehret, So.), 4x400 top qualifier, 3:01.52 (best collegiate time this year)

Nadolsky: "We knew we could do it all year, even in preseason. Our coach knew we could do it. Our coach said other teams are working harder than we are so we were able to pull through it and do what we needed to do."

Bennett-Green: "We knew we had to go because we have a slow anchor so we had to go. Well, no, we wanted to give our best effort to put him (Gehret) in position and we did that."

Loxsom in third place with baton: "At Regional's I was not as close so I did not do as well. I went out to hard. I wanted to go out a bit more conservatively. I was a little nervous when he Brady told me he was going to end where he got the baton."

Gehret: "We knew we had this in us the whole year. I just tell them to give me position, give me position and this will happen every time. As long as we do the same in the finals it will happen again. It's the magic stick. Nobody ever talks about us. We have to keep doing it and then they will know us."

 

Andrew Riley, Sr., Illinois, men's 110 hurdles winner Heat 3, 13.30

On his run: "The objective was to get through the rounds. Get out to the first hurdle first. I try to get out as hard as I can. Then after that, I use mostly my technique with a little bit of speed in between to try to make it through to the finals. I'm just trying to get to the finals and take it from there. What I've been practicing all year is what I have to replicate in the finals, and if I do that I think I can pull out a victory. I've been working very hard this year. You know it's an Olympic year so I've got to strive for the highest. I've been putting in the hard work and it's been paying off these days. So I'm happy."

On the finals: "You know I don't really worry about time. My objective for these meets is to try and run as fast as I can in the 100, as fast as I can in the hurdles, and the 4x100 also. So I'm just working on that."

On his goal time: "12.9, I mean that's the goal for the year. But you know I'm aiming for it. You know 12.9 it's in my reach; just little stuff I've got to fix. I don't know man, I'd be speechless. I'd be happy if I see that time."


Barrett Nugent, Sr., LSU, men's 110 hurdles second in Heat 3 , 13.36
2011 NCAA Outdoor Champion in the 110 Hurdles

On the run: "Finally legal. That's the hardest thing just getting a legal time. I think I've only had one or two races with legal time."

On making it into the finals with one of the deepest fields in years: "It's always an accomplishment making it into the NCAA Final. Now the real accomplishment is getting past that and winning it, or just getting a top-three. Every year is tough competition, somebody comes up. Wayne Davis (II), this year, is coming up. I'm really happy for him. We're helping each other out. I'm glad to see that he's running well now; running really well."

On what it takes to win the final: "Last year the wind was my, my winning factor actually. Because I mean, once that wind picked up during our race I mean I had a fast weak turn over. That's key whenever you have hurdles and you have the wind pushing you up on the hurdles because if you, you're trying to run hard you can crash and burn unfortunately there's a lot of people last year that did that. Luckily I was all the way in the outside lane. Hey, if I ever have the request to go to one or eight, I'd be happy to go out there."

Wayne Davis II, Jr., Texas A&M, Winner Heat 2, Men's 110 Meter Hurdles, 13.26

On the race: "I'm feeling pretty good. I'm just looking forward to finals; it's going to be something crazy because the times are so close together. I thought last year was close. I'm just glad I'm up with all those guys that were beating me last year. So I really feel blessed."

On his time: "I knew I was going to run fast. I didn't want to put a time on it. I just wanted to execute and stay clean over the hurdles, and that's what I did. I feel like I'm starting to find my rhythm, find my flow. Finally trying to see how I run the race rather than looking at a whole bunch of people. Just putting some little basic things together is what put me where I am now."

 

Jarret Eaton, Sr., Texas Tech, men's 110 hurdles second in Heat 1, 13.55

On the race: "It was just a bad race. I kind of broke down at the end, lost my focus a little bit. Then just tried to hold on as best as I could, and got second. Go on to the next day. I can't be mad, you know, I'm in the finals. Fix the problems, mentally, physically; yeah we'll be ready for tomorrow."

On coming into this event as the NCAA Indoor Champion of the 60 Hurdles: "It's good. I have a little bit of pressure on my back. Everybody's expecting a repeat so just have to go out here and have fun, keep my mind clear and just do what I do."

 

Whitney Gipson, Sr., TCU, women's long jump champion, 22-4½ (6.82m)
Gipson was the NCAA indoor champion this year and finished fourth in the outdoor championship last year.

On how her training helped her win today: "After indoors, we had gone back to basic training, so my coach didn't really expect me to jump big throughout the whole outdoor season. This is the time I should have jumped big."

On her winning jump coming in her second attempt: "Coach Anderson and Coach Peterson always tell me it just takes one and try and get them early because you never know what the conditions may be in the finals. So that's what I was looking for."

On whether her win today also validated her indoor championship: "Yeah, but I wanted to probably get closer to the outdoor record. But hey, I'll take the win."

 

Henry Lelei, Jr., Texas A&M, men's steeplechase winner Heat 1, 8:39.09

On taking the lead with 600 meters left: "I felt like I was not moving. So I thought, okay, it's time to take it out."

On the team title: "I can't say where we are at now. We will not know until Saturday."

 

Donn Cabral, Sr., Princeton, men's steeplechase winner Heat 2, 8:38.12 (fastest qualifying time)
He was second at last year's NCAA Outdoor Championships.

On taking the lead early: "On the first stretch, two guys came in front of me, and I was not comfortable."

On the end of the race: "My last two hurdles were horrible. On the last water jump, I kept thinking, 'What if I clip it?' Thinking like that made me clip it. I stutter stepped the last hurdle. I have to clean my act up for the final."

 

Kurt Felix, Boise State, Sr., decathlon champion, 8062 points
Felix will compete for his native Grenada in the decathlon in the 2012 London Olympics.

On his big Day 2: "I knew I had to come out here and start out having a good second day. So I came out and didn't get as good of a start as I wanted to in the hurdles, but I PRed in the discus. So that built me up for the pole vault and I got a PR in that. And then I came into the javelin, where I was the favorite, and I was close to those guys. And I tried to have a big enough lead coming into the last event."

On whether he surprised himself with the big second day: "Yeah, especially in the pole vault (15-1). I had a really big PR there. I was happy with that."

On being an NCAA decathlon champion: "It was my last NCAA competition, so it feels really good."

 

Bridgette Owens, So., Clemson, women's 100 hurdles winner Heat 1, 12.71
Owens set a school record and a PR with her qualifying time.

On the race: "At the start, I tried to start as strong as I could. Throughout the race I kept thinking 'Get to the finish line.' It came together for me today. I just plan on running a PR every time I come out and run, today it happened again."

On practices and competing with team mates: "It's just like practice. It's good to see that my partner in practice is going to be my partner in the meet. For me, that's a good thing. It's very intense. All of us are running 12 seconds or 13 low, so it's like a track meet every day at practice, really, so it's good to have everyone come to the meet and be able to compete."

 

Brianna Rollins, SO, Clemson, women's 100 hurdles winner Heat 3, 12.73
Rollins set a new PR with her qualifying time.

On the race: "It felt so good. I felt relaxed. I wanted to make sure that I would come up here and execute a really clean race."

On Clemson hurdlers being the top two qualifiers to finals: "It feels really good. We trained really hard to come here and be at the top, so it feels good to come in and get the top two times with my team mate (Bridgette Owens). We are going to do the best we can, stay patient and stay focused. That's all we can do."

 

Natalja Piliusina, So., Oklahoma State, women's 1500 winner Heat 2, 4:12.55

On the field: "When you run against girls like that it really gets you pumped. I have worked to get to this level to compete with these girls. It makes you work harder. You really want to be there with them and try to compete."

On the race: "I was trying to stay out of trouble. I was back and kind of boxed in and began to see an opening. I seem to manage to get myself in situations where I get pushed. I wasn't in the best position, but I wanted to make it to the finals so bad so the last 100 I gave it all."

On making finals: "Definitely will be one of the fastest races. At the Regionals, I was really close to the Olympic Standard. I don't think I am ready for A yet, but if I can get a B. I try not to think about the place. I have finished second twice. I really wanted to win last year and it didn't happen. I just want to go out, do my best and get whatever place I get."

 

Ryan Hill, Jr., North Carolina State, men's 1500 meter run winner Heat 1, 3:39.84 (fastest qualifying time)

On race plan: "My strategy was to start off in the back and finish hard. I felt confident that I would be able to hang on. I felt really good with 300 and 200 to go. All of what counts is the last 400 meters. It's all about survival."

On his post race thoughts: "The race felt good. I kind of wish it was the final. It felt like a 3:40, 3:41 race."

 

Erik Van Ingen, Sr., Binghamton, men's 1500 meter run Heat 2 winner, 3:42.57
He was sixth at the 2011 NCAA Outdoor Championships.

On the race: "I have not felt that great the past few days. It's not about how you feel, as long as you get the job done. I struggled some. When the bell lap came, I knew that I was there and the last 100 meters would be there."

On the last 100: "With 100 meters to go, no one was giving up any real estate. It was a matter of getting by. I got by and got my ticket to the final. That's all I needed to do today."

 

Brianne Theisen, Oregon, Sr., heptathlon leader after Day 1, 3803 points
Theisen is going for her third straight NCAA heptathlon championship. Theisen holds five NCAA titles, two in the heptathlon and three in the indoor pentathlon. Theisen is the collegiate-leading scorer and holds the third best all-time score in the event.

On her performance today: "There wasn't really a lot of pressure coming into this meet, so you can just take it easy. It was an easy day, kind of long, but easy. We still have tomorrow and I usually have a good day on the second day, we will see. I got a good lead and that was my goal. It felt pretty easy to me. We stopped early in the high jump. The shot was easy, the hurdles felt a little sloppy, not the best race ever, so I'm happy with it.

On her outlook for tomorrow: "It's weird because I've never been this low-key at an NCAA meet, but having good performances helps you stay up. I'm looking forward to tomorrow because I do have a good score going in, so if I have a decent long jump, it will be good. We'll see."

 

Kimberlyn Duncan, Jr., LSU, women's 200 winner Heat 2, 22.19 (Drake Stadium record)

About her record setting run: "When I ran today, I wasn't expecting that at all. I just came out here trying to make it to the finals; trying to do better than I did at regionals. I wanted to come out here to try to make it to the finals to score points for my team."

On running a record-setting run during prelims and the confidence gives her going into the finals: "Like I said, I wasn't expecting to run that at all, so I'm very pleased with the time. As long as the time keeps dropping, that gives me confidence because that means I'm ready to go. I feel like I'm peaking at the right time. I feel like I'll be ready to go when I have to run the final."

About her race: "I just came out here today, just trying to execute the race. I know for me to score points for my team, I'm going to have to come out here and execute the race because all of the girls are going to be pushing it and trying to win. So I'm going to come out here with the same attitude, trying to make it to the final and do the best I can to score as many points as possible for my team."

 

Maurice Mitchell, Sr., Florida State, top qualifier men's 200, 20.23
Mitchell is the defending NCAA Champion in this event.

On getting through preliminaries: "Physically, I feel really well. I really thank God for letting me get through healthy. I am really happy with the time. Now I am looking forward to the finals."

On his team's performance: "We all want to win the championship. I have to come out here and score as many points as possible. I know I have a little bit of weight on my shoulders, but I think I can handle it."

On the race: "I really wanted to run a 20.10 or 20.15, but 20.23 is okay. It's one of the top times in the world so I can be happy with that. I don't think I reacted very well. I was a little passive, but I was able to get out and do what I wanted to get to the next round. I was pressing a bit at the end, but I did alright."

 

Harry Adams, Jr., Auburn, men's 200 winner heat 1, 20.49
Adams is the fourth overall qualifier in the 200 and he also won his heat in the 100 prelims on Wednesday.

On the race: "I was just trying to qualify. I wanted to go out and win my heat today. Saturday is when I have to make it."

 

Jeneva McCall, Sr., Southern Illinois, winner women's hammer, 68.67 (225-3)
McCall finished second in the 2011 NCAA Championship meet and has not lost to another collegiate athlete this year.

On her season: "Usually at a meet I don't monitor what's going on around me. The only thing you can focus on is yourself and this meet, I was down, but it held up."

On her throws and winning the NCAA Championship: "(I wasn't happy), not at all. I don't really feel like a champion in this event today because of how it went. I feel like a survivor more than a champion.

 

Tim Glover, Jr., Illinois State, repeat champion, men's javelin, 268-0 (81.69m)

On how he improved so dramatically from his best throw of the first flight (247-5): "I just kind of recharged my battery a little bit and went out there and just sped up and threw harder."

On his winning throw: "After I looked up and said, 'Alright,' I saw the bottom of it just kept carrying, and all day they've been dying. So that one I knew, it was a good one."

On validating his championship last year with the repeat: "It felt similar in going through the finals. I mean last year, my first throw [of finals] was my farthest throw [just like this year], and so I just had to wait for everyone to get through finals."



WEDNESDAY, JUNE 6, 2012

Cameron Levins, Sr., Southern Utah, champion, men's 10,000-meter run, 28:07.14
Levins took the lead with 250 meters to go. It's his first NCAA title as well as the first NCAA title for the school. He broke the 32-year-old Drake Stadium record of 28:07.40 by Kipsubal Koekei of the Albuquerque Track Club in 1980.

On the race: "I knew who the contenders were going to be. I knew Puskedra, Chris (Derrick) and Sambu were going to be up there."

On not leading until the end: "I felt like I had the strongest finishing speed. I just wanted to wait around. Everyone else had to build their strategy off my finish."

On giving Southern Utah its first national title: "That was the big goal for me. I wanted to leave them with that. They gave me the opportunity to run and improve. I am so thankful for that and to give back to them."

 

Harry Adams, Jr., Auburn, men's 100 winner Heat 2, 9.96 (fastest qualifying time in an NCAA meet)

On his record-setting 100m run: "I wasn't going out there for the record. I was going out there to make the finals, to win. I ran a good race. God blessed me. I stayed with my technique and ran tall through the line. I just won the race. I didn't expect the nine, but I thank God for it."

On boncing back for 200 meters on Thursday: "Just being a true athlete. You know what you have to do. It's a long weekend. Go get in the cold tank. Get a flush out. Whatever I need to stay healthy and get through the weekend."

 

Maurice Mitchell, Sr., Florida State, men's 100 winner Heat 3, 10.03 (third fastest qualifying time)
Mitchell won the 200 and was second in the 100 at last year's NCAA Outdoor Championships.

About his run: "It was exciting. Coach told us to go out there and execute and get through to the next round. I think we really did a good job. I really thank God for getting us through healthy. I'm glad Kemar (Hyman) and I got a chance to run really fast and move on to the finals."

About the record being broken last year and it seems like they're on the verge of breaking it again this year: "Last year definitely gives me confidence. I'm just really glad that I've got another teammate who's there with me running fast as well. So I'm really glad that I'm not alone on it. I'm just excited and looking forward to finals and looking forward to the 200 prelim and we'll go from there."

On why Drake produces these times?: "The track is fast. There are good winds. I'm just really happy, but never satisfied."

 

Marquise Goodwin, JR, Texas, winner, men's long jump, 8.23 (27-0)
Goodwin was the 2010 NCAA long jump champion, finished third in the 2011 NCAA meet. Goodwin skipped the 100 meter dash semifinals today to focus on the long jump. Goodwin is also a star wide receiver on the Texas football team.

On his performance: "It feels great. First, I want to give honor to God, without Him there would be no me. My parents, my mom, my coaches, my team mates...I had a blast out here. It feels great to compete here, there are a lot of great competitors jumping that have beaten me before but I just felt it today, went out there and got it done."

On his jump progression: "It felt good, it was a good series. During warm-ups I felt good. I came out and did what I needed to do to get points for the team."

On the winning jump (his final jump): "I've lost it on the last jump before, I've lost in the finals before. You always have to compete for all six jumps. People are still trying to prove themselves in the finals, you can never let up. Especially with the athletes competing today, but I just remained poised, went out and attacked and came out successful today."

On what the final jump felt like: "I knew it was a good one, the last jump, I knew it was good, but I was not expecting a 27 like it was. I'm thankful for that and I'm going to build from here for the USA's in two weeks."

 

Amaechi Morton, Sr., Stanford, men's 400-meter hurdles winner Heat 2,49.37 (top qualifying time)
He is a six-time All-American who was second at last year's NCAA Outdoor Championships. He was fourth at last year's NCAA Outdoor Championships.

About his run: "I was a little slow on the start. I kind of stuttered on the first one - like I knew it was going to happen because on my practice start, I came up on my right leg. So whenever that happens, I know the start is going to be kind of iffy. But from there, I try to pick it up a little bit on the backstretch and then bring it home. I stuttered a few more times on the homestretch, but I came home with the win, so that's what is most important."

About Friday's finals and whether he will make any adjustments: "Yeah, definitely the start. The start should be a little more cleaner, and then maintain that until about the eighth hurdle. Then just bring it home a little stronger."

On how excited and anxious he was today: "I've been in the hotel all day and just waiting and waiting is when I get nervous. So we were watching the Disney Chanel; that's my secret to keep me feeling like a kid and just to keep my mind off of it because it's just so late in the evening."

 

David Aristil, Sr., South Florida, men's 400-meter hurdles winner Heat 3, 49.83 (fourth fastest qualifying time)

About his run: "I always have problems getting out, so this week we really practiced on getting out faster and getting through the hurdles. Another problem is I stutter a lot. I really like to work on recovering after I stutter. So it was an alright race. It was the fastest I've ever run in a preliminary round."

On finals: "I think finals will be good. These guys are looking pretty good out here right now. Amaechi is definitely coming out fast so I believe he's going to be moving. It's going to be a great competition. I'm not so much worried about how I'm going to do or how I'm going to measure up against him. It's really just about how I run my race. So that's what I'm focused on right now."

 

Turquoise Thompson, JR, UCLA, 400 hurdles, winner heat 1, 55.59

On her competitor's fall and how she moved past it: "She'll shape up and get it back together. She'll be out for trials. It's unfortunate, but you have to fall to get back up. We all go through it. I'm rooting for her, oddly. I saw her going down and I was just like 'okay, pull it together, make it to the finish line, and
into the finals.'"

On finals: "I feel good going into the finals. I have a day to recover and get it together so I can go into finals with fresh legs."

On her time: "Typically, I'd like to be running better times than that by this time of year, but it is an Olympic year, so you push back your training to get running the good times at that time of the season."


Ellen Wortham, SR, Tennessee, 400 hurdles, winner heat 2, 55.67

On the race: "It was good, it was smooth, it was a little choppy, but overall it was good. The main thing was just to win the heat. I was able to go out and get first place, which was my goal."

On taking the lead in the last 100 meters: "My race strategy is different than a lot of girls, I don't go out as hard at the beginning, I just focus on getting my step pattern and then dig in."

 

Cassandra Tate, SR, LSU, 400 hurdles, winner heat 3, 55.96.

On the race strategy: "I was just taking the hurdles one at a time, attacking each hurdle until I could get through to the next round and help the team score points for the team title."

On her run: "I clipped a couple of hurdles and I had to get my composure back together, but I still finished top 2 so that's all that matters."

 

Katerina Stefanidi, Sr., Stanford, champion, women's pole vault, tied meet record clearing 14-7¼ (4.45m) on her first attempt (NCAA Outdoor Record: 4.45m, three other vaulters)
Stefanidi has finished as high as second at the NCAA meet and was third at both last year's NCAA outdoor championships and this winter's indoor championships.

On her winning performance: "I had a weird meet. I didn't start out well. I think I was very nervous and it just got better and better as the height went higher."

On her reaction to being an NCAA champion: "The first thing that I thought when I won was, 'Finally.' I mean I was third, I was second, I was third again, I was fourth and fifth. So I've been pretty close."

On the perfect night for vaulting: "Yeah it was pretty good. The wind was kind of turning a little, so we had these little wind gauges and it was showing that the wind was so bad, but there was no wind on the track. I was really confused. But it was really good, particularly compared to last year."

 

Shalaya Kipp, Jr., Colorado, women's 3,000-meter steeplechase Heat 1 winner, 9:59.18 (fastest qualifying time)
Kipp finished third in the event at last year's NCAA Outdoor Championships.

On the leading the race: "It was my plan to go out and lead. I wanted to see what I was doing. Blind barriers are not that much fun. I felt good and I expended as little energy as possible."

 

Amber Henry, Jr., Weber State, women's 3,000-meter steeplechase Heat 2 winner, 10:06.08 (the seventh fastest qualifying time)

On the race: "I knew I'd have a lot speed at the end, so I decided to push it the last 200 meters. I wanted to go and see what I could do. I did not think that I would win.

"For the race, I wanted to stay in the top five and not fall behind. I did not have a set plan."

 

Charlene Lipsey, Jr., LSU, women's 800 Heat 1 winner, 2:03.76 (third fastest qualifying time)

About her run: "I ran 2:03.07. In my heat, I had Tasha Stanley. She's usually the type of runner that takes out and holds us off. So my agenda was just to get in front and hold off in order to beat her, and that's exactly what I did. My goal was to make it to the finals and I did, so I'm happy with that."

Is the 2:03:07 what she had hoped to run?: "I've run 2:02, but 2:03 today wasn't that bad. I was just trying to make it to the finals.

What was she thinking will have to happen for the finals?: "I'm going to have to run two minutes or better if I'm going to try to win."


Anne Kesselring, Jr., Oregon, women's 800 Heat 2 runner-up, 2:02.66 (fifth fastest qualifying time)
Kesselring is the defending NCAA Outdoor champion in this event.

About her run: "It was good. I went out too slow, which kind of surprised me. I feel like I was maybe a little bit asleep. But then I woke up and just gradually moved up and really attacked on the home stretch and it worked out for the best."

About the competition: "It was very crowded, but I kind of expected that. Anyone that made it here could probably run a 2:04 or faster, so I just tried to prepare. I think my first 200 was pretty bad technically, but you just have to have confidence and trust that you still have 600 meters to make it work,
even if you're in the back."


Chanelle Price, Sr., Tennessee, women's 800, Heat 3 winner, 2:01.66 (top qualifying time)

About the run: "There was a girl (Benita Taylor) who got out real hard. I kind of knew she was going to slow down, so coming into 200 I took the lead. I have words that I say to myself as I'm going, 'Keep it going. Stay smooth.' So I'm not really worried about time, it's more of a feel to me."

On her goal for finals: "On Saturday, I just want either a win or an incredibly fast time. You know this is my last go around, so I want to end with a bang. If I'm not going to win, we're going to run fast because that's what I want and I think that's what the other girls want too."

 

English Gardner So. Oregon fastest qualifying time in the 100, 11.10

How did today's race feel? "Alright. I have some technical issues that I need to work on but I was happy with my race. I wasn't going for a pr just trying to make it to finals."

Did it help having your teammate hand off to you in the 4x4, then go out and run a big PR? "Yeah, it made me want to go out and run a big PR but I knew I just needed to run my race and qualify, then save myself for tomorrow."


Kimberlyn Duncan, JR LSU, qualified in the 100
SEC 100 and 200 champion returning 200 champion.

What was your goal for today? "Just to make it to finals. In both races, I achieved that goal."

How do you balance all the races? "I just take it one event at a time. You kind of have to look ahead some, but you can't do that too much. It's just balance. I really try just look one day at a time like my coach always says."

 

Whitney Ashley, Sr., San Diego State, champion, women's discus
PR of 196-10 on her fifth throw (59.94m). Wright was also an All-American at last year's NCAA Outdoor Championships at Drake, finishing seventh.

On where the winning throw and PR came from: "I finally learned how to balance patience and anxiety. I've been rushing since the meet started and I just decided, 'You know, you already made it to finals, why rush? Slow it down and see if you can hit one.' And it went - it actually went! It felt good."

On the difference from finishing seventh last year to winning it this year: "I'm much stronger, much more mature. I just have a better understanding of the sport itself. I love it, so that always helps."

 

Diamond Dixon, So., Kansas, women's 400 Heat 2 winner, 51.51 (fourth best time). Dixon won the
2012 NCAA Indoor 400.

On passing Regina George (Arkansas) at the end: "I knew with second place, that would make it [for
finals], but I wanted to get a good lane."

On the race: "It was okay. I did not get out as fast as I could have. I just wanted to relax to make sure I
made it to the final."

On the final: "It's going to be a fight to the finish. It's going to take 49-something to win."

 

Regina George, Jr., Arkansas, women's 400 Heat 2 runner-up, 51.57 (fifth best time). George was
second in the 2012 NCAA Indoor 400. She set the Arkansas school record in today's semi-final.

On the race: "All three heats were fast. I can't be mad about running 51."

On the final: "It's going to be very competitive. I am guessing it's going to take 50-point-something to
win the final. I have to bring my A-game and hopefully I draw a good lane."

 

Brittany Borman, SR, Oklahoma, Winner, Women's Disucus, 56.27 (184-7). Borman is the reigning Big 12 champion in the javelin (2011, 2012) and Drake Relays Champion (2012). This is Borman's second consecutive NCAA Championship in the javelin and the second javelin championship for Oklahoma.

On the winning throw: "It felt good. I didn't know if it would hold, honestly, there's a lot of really good
girls out there, good competition.

On defending her championship: "It was really exciting. I just prayed before the competition and
relaxed and just let whatever happened, happen."

On throwing the discus right after the javelin competition: "I was actually looking forward to it. I'm
used to doing the heptathlon, so I am used to doing things in a row like that. I was excited to finish and
then go right into the next one."

On winning Oklahoma's second javelin championship: "I've been surrounded by a great team, great
coaches, so I felt like they really prepared me for it. It's just great to be a part of such a good team."

 

Josh Mance, So., USC, ran a PR of 44.80 to qualify second in the 400-meter dash semi-
finals.

Where did that strong final 100 come from? "Honestly that was all strength. Complete
strength. I do not have the speed right now, but hopefully that will come."

Any small adjustments you will try to make before the finals? "If someone recorded the race
for me, I'm going to watch it see what I did right and look for any adjustments I can make."

 

Ashley Collier, So., Texas A&M, anchor, 4x100-meter relay team, winner Heat 2 (2nd in semifinals), 42.90.
Texas A&M won the 4x100 at last year's NCAA Outdoor Championships.

About her race: "We did well. We made it to the finals. That's the most important thing that we're worried about. So we're happy about that. I think everybody ran really well. We were just trying to make it to the finals, which we did. We'll have to work hard on some other stuff."

 

Chesna Sykes, So., Ohio State, anchor, 4x100-meter relay, winner Heat 3 (5th overall), 43.87.

About her race: "We're just trying to get back to qualify for finals. I know last year we got ninth place, so we were a little upset. I just gave it all my heart. I know we've got a whole bunch of seniors getting ready to leave, so I just gave it all I had. I wasn't about to go down without a fight."

About how the team ran overall: "We definitely had a few errors. One of our teammates was saying that somebody from another lane hit her - our first exchange person. So I was watching and that kind of messed up our second leg."

"We've definitely got to get it together for Saturday with LSU and Texas A&M. We're no All-American, but we want a top three finish."

 

Charles Jock, UC Irvine, SR, 800 semifinal, winner heat 1, 1:46.24.
Jock was in the 2011 World Championships and is considered the favorite in the 800 M.

On the race and final: "Today felt like kind of a warm up. My legs felt really strong. I felt really good and strong today. I am excited for the final. It's going to be fast and its going to be fun."

On heat runner-up Ryan Martin: "I have raced Ryan so many times. I feel comfortable with him in my heat."


Erik Sowinski, Iowa, SR, 800 semifinal, winner heat 3, 1:46.09.

On the leading the race: "When people started passing me, they came a lot quicker than I thought they would. I stayed patient and knew I had that kick. Before the race I decided to just go for the lead. I had nothing to lose. I am usually pretty good for the first 400."

On the final: "I have not had two days of rest between any 800s all season. I should recover pretty well. It will be a good time. I am looking forward to it."

 

Keenan Brock, So., Auburn, anchor leg, men's 4x100 relay, fastest semi-final time of 38.53.
They had the top seed time coming in at 39.23.

How did you feel running today? "I felt really good. It was the first time we ran in that order and things felt good today."

Do you think you'll be running that order in the finals? "I don't really know. It felt good though. We were only two tenths off of our PR."

 

Chad Wright, So., Nebraska, champion, men's discus, 206-0 (62.79m).
Wright was the second seed coming in and his winning throw was the longest in Division I this year.

On turning it on in the finals, with his winning throw being his fifth: "It was the
technique coming together because between throwing in the first flight and the finals, I took six practice throws in that 20-minute interval to get my technique together. And then I got it together."

On the winning throw taking place after a break when officials had to chase a bug from the ring: "It did provide comic relief because I was like, 'A bug.' I was so focused and then I saw it and I said, 'Hold it, there's a bug in the ring.' And I was laughing when I said it and it just relaxed me.

"It [the bug] wasn't so big, but it was noticeable."

 

Kurt Felix, Sr., Boise State, leader after Day 1(five events), decathlon, 4,187 points

On his first day: "I got a good start with the 100 meters since it was a PR for me (10.90, 2nd fastest in event), but going into the long jump we had to jump into a head wind and that affected everybody. I was hoping to get a better first day score, but it was a pretty good performance."

On how the PR in the 100 jump-started his day: "It put me in good place because my first day has to be really strong because my second day's not as strong as some of the other guys - like in the pole vault and the hurdles. So I'm always trying to get a quick start in the first day."



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