LSU’s Jumpers, Holliday Highlight Day 2 in New York

LSU’s Jumpers, Holliday Highlight Day 2 in New York

NEW YORK – Not since LSU great and Olympic silver medalist John Moffitt won the long jump title at the inaugural New Balance Collegiate Invitational in 2004 with a meet record 27 feet, 1 ¾ inches had an LSU athlete won the event at one of the premier meets of the indoor season.

That all changed Friday at the historic Armory Track and Field Center as junior Will Coppage set a new overall personal best and NCAA-leading mark of 25-7 ¼ to outdistance the field.

Coppage, who entered the competition without an NCAA qualifying mark to his credit this indoor season, opened the meet with an NCAA provisional qualifying mark of 24-10 on his first jump of the afternoon. He then stepped onto the runway for his third attempt and soared to the top of the NCAA this season with the No. 10 indoor performance in school history.

Coppage eclipsed his previous personal best by one inch as he went 25-6 ¼ to earn All-America honors with a fifth-place finish at the 2007 NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships.

“Coach (Todd Lane) told me that I was ready to jump far this week,” Coppage said. “We just had a great week of practice as a group, and I knew I could come here and put it all together. My first jump gave me a lot of confidence going 24-10. When I hit that big jump, I felt really good going off the board and my landing was much better. I knew it was a big one.”