Jan. 31, 2014
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Karly Jackson soared to new heights, while Chelsea Whalen bombed one throw deep, highlighting what could best be described as an otherwise flat performance by the Florida State track & field teams on the opening day of the Razorback Invitational.
Jackson became just the third Florida State woman to clear 13 feet in the pole vault indoors when she carried the crossbar on her third and final attempt at 3.97 meters (13-0.25) Friday night at the Randal Tyson Track Center. The redshirt sophomore from Orlando moved into third place on the Seminoles’ all-time list, trailing only Lacy Janson and Liz Mabry.
Her effort was good for a fourth-place finish against a solid field made up of nine nationally-ranked schools.
Whalen delivered the Seminole women one of two victories – Der’Renae Freeman also won the long jump – by eclipsing teammate Kellion Knibb on her sixth and final throw of the night. Not only did the senior from Canada come up with a winner, she nearly broke the school record. Her toss of 16.27 meters (53-4.50) left her exactly one inch shy of Kamorean Hayes’ school mark (16.29m/53-5.50), set in 2008.
“Coach [Dorian Scott] and I were talking about just about being patient and focusing on our weekly goal,” Whalen said. “I just focused on what I wasn’t doing, what I had to do and it just came out.”
Her winning throw followed four consecutive fouls and came just after Knibb surged into the lead with her would-be runner-up mark of 15.82 meters.
“Today it was basically just Knibb and I in the competition,” Whalen said. “When she hit that last one to bump ahead it just gave me a challenge and I said, `OK, I’m going to go after that challenge.’ It was hard, but I feel like it’s a common occurrence for me – last throw-best throw.
“I definitely feel like there’s more there.”
While Whalen has designs on adding the indoor record to her outdoor mark, set last year, she is also focused on gaining a trip to the NCAA Indoor Championships for the first time in her career.
“To me, the record is just a number,” she added. “I’m more concerned about making the NCAA [Championship]. In order to get to the NCAA I’m going to have to get the record.”
Whalen moved up to No. 17 in the current national rankings, but only the top 16 throwers will advance to the championship.
Among other scoring performances by the Seminoles, redshirt freshman Grete Sadeiko finished sixth in the pentathlon in her first full five-event competition since suffering a knee injury last season. The native Estonian finished with 3,656 points, while junior teammate Alejandra Martinez – buoyed by five new personal-bests – finished eighth with 3,451 points. Those two totals rank second and third in FSU history. Maryke Brits’ pentathlon debut produced 3,076 points, which ranks eight all-time among `Noles.
Locke placed four in a loaded 200-meter field, finishing off his season debut in the event in 21.03,, which is just .01 off his indoor personal best with the Seminoles.
Freshmen Chadrick DaCosta (15.56m/54-4) and Austin Droogsma (15.21/49-11) placed third and sixth, respectively, in the shot put. Stefan Brits (7.34m/24-1) and Paul Madzivire (7.31/23-11.75) finished fifth and sixth, respectively, in the long jump.
FSU also sent a makeshift distance medley relay team out for the first time this season and the team of Kemper Morton, Ricardo Roy, Otniel Teixeira and Bryce Kelley placed fifth in 10:04.15, which stands as the ninth-fastest mark in school history.
After one day of competition the Florida State men’s and women’s teams sit in third place in the team scoring. The 17th-ranked Seminole women have scored 43.5 points through eight events and trail No. 7 Arkansas (84) and No. 3 Texas A&M (54). Fourth-ranked Florida is in fourth place with 37 points.
FSU’s sixth-ranked men have 27.5 points and are chasing No. 1 Arkansas (63.5) and No. 5 Texas A&M (52.5). The second-ranked Florida men are in fifth with 25 points.
Action resumes Saturday at 12 noon (ET) and can be track via live results at http://www.flashresults.com/2014_Meets/indoor/1-31-RazorbackInvite/
Updates will be made throughout the meet via Twitter @FSU_Track.