Flyin' Frogs Advance Five More To National Meet
May 29, 2004
College Station, Texas - Jerry Harris set a school record in the 400 meter dash and the TCU Flyin' Frogs advanced five more events to the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships, as the Midwest Regional meet wrapped up this evening at the Anderson Track Complex on the Texas A&M campus in College Station. The top five individuals in each event, along with the top three teams in the relays automatically advanced to the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships, which will be held in Austin in two weeks.
"It was a lot of very good with some spotty disappointment," said TCU head coach Monte Stratton. "Michael (Frater), Jabari (Fields) and Jerry (Harris) all had fabulous non-winning times. Jerry had a phenomenal third place finish. The best you can say about the relays is we survived to fight another day. We got out of the meet relatively healthy, so now we'll get ready for nationals."
Harris, a senior from Alexandria, Virginia, earned a third place finish and a spot in the NCAA meet with a school record time of 44.89 seconds, becoming the first Frog to eclipse the 45-second barrier. Baylor teammates Jeremy Wariner (44.50) and Darold Williamson (44.51) posted a one-two finish to edge the TCU standout. Harris broke the school mark of 45.14 seconds, set by Michael Cannon in 1985. Brett Wilson (46.31) and Che Chavez (47.17) were sixth and seventh respectively in the event.
"I feel good," said Harris. "I felt a lot better today. My calf was a little tight, but overall I felt good. Nobody likes to run in lane 7. I just wanted to get out fast and make those guys chase me. When that happens, good things happen. I got beat by two great runners today. This was a good awarm-up meet for the NCAAs. I actually had the chance to talk to Michael Cannon after the NCAA indoor meet," continued Harris. "I told him the record had been up there for too long. It was a goal (to get the record). It's an honor and a blessing to have both (the indoor and outdoor 400 meter school records)."
In the 100 meter dash, Michael Frater finished second despite turning in a season-best time of 10.09 seconds. The senior from Fort Lauderdale, Florida was nipped at the wire by Texas' Brendan Christian by just three-thousandths of a second (10.084 to 10.087). Frater's teammate, Cleavon Dillon, was disqualified from the event with a false start. "I'm happy today is over," said Frater. "My time was ok for now. My start wasn't as good today as it was yesterday. It kind of upset me when Cleavon false started - I thought someone else had moved. You just have to concentrate and stay focused after something like that."
Jabari Fields stopped the clock in a season-best time of 20.30 seconds in the 200 meter dash to place third, earning a spot in the national field.
"The last 30 to 40 meters I started to overstride and didn't run my race," said Fields, "but I ran faster (than my previous best), so I'm happy with that."
Both the TCU men's and women's 4x100 meter relay units finished in the top three, punching their tickets to Austin. The men's foursome of Fields, Dillon, Harris and Frater, posted a time of 39.67 seconds to earn a second place finish behind Nebraska, which circled the track in 39.62 seconds. The Horned Frog women's quartet of Jamee Jones, Donita Harmon, Larissa Bakasa and Virgil Hodge finished third with a time of 44.59 seconds, behind Texas (43.34) and Baylor (44.46).
"We made it to nationals," said Harris after the men's performance. "We're confident. This was the regional meet. Our job here was to qualify for the nationals and we're still around. The big one is in two weeks."
"We made it," said Bakasa. "Donita wasn't 100 percent today, but we have to be ready in two weeks."
Bakasa, competing in the final 400 meter event of her collegiate career, placed seventh despite turning in a personal best time of 53.09 seconds. The time was just one one-hundredth of a second off the school record mark of 53.08, set by Dywana Crudup in 2000. Donita Harmon placed seventh in the 200 meter dash with a time of 23.24 seconds. Zelma Wade fouled in her three attempts in the shot put.
On Friday, Aundre Edwards and Jonathan Jackson qualified for the national meet in the long jump with a first and fifth place finish respectively. Mary Kinyanjui also advanced to the NCAA meet in the 5,000 meter run with a second place finish.
The TCU men finished seventh in the team scoring with 47 points, while the women tied for 16th place with 18 points. Nebraska won the men's tea, title with 86.25 points, while Texas captured the women's team title with 110 points.
TCU RESULTS (Saturday) - ALL FINALS:
200 meter Dash: 3. Jabari Fields 20.30 (Advanced to NCAA Meet)
200 meter Dash: 7. Donita Harmon 23.24
400 meter Dash: 7. Larissa Bakasa 53.09
Shot Put: -. Zelma Wade Foul