Record Book Update: Year of the Discus?

Record Book Update: Year of the Discus?

NEW ORLEANS – Last year may have been the Year of the Vault, but the most intriguing event of 2016 is shaping up to be the discus.

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Two different women made collegiate history in the discus this weekend in very different ways, but both will be colliding in perhaps the deepest event in college right now.

Hannah Carson of Texas Tech has already made a name for herself in the javelin – she’s No. 3 all-time in that event at 60.42m (198-2) and was the national runner-up in heartbreaking fashion last year – but she’s burst onto the discus scene as a national contender in that event.

Just this weekend, she heaved 61.97m (203-3) at a home meet to move to No. 12 all-time and No. 2 this year among collegians [more on No. 11 and No. 1 in a moment].

Put those two marks together and you get collegiate history: no other woman has ever thrown 60 meters or farther in both the discus and the javelin in the same career, let alone the same season. And no woman has ever won NCAA DI national titles in both events.

The woman immediately ahead of her both this year and all-time? That’d be Kelsey Card of Wisconsin, who made some history of her own this weekend.

Competing at her home Wisconsin Open, Card threw the shot put 18.56m (60-10¾) and the discus 61.71m (202-5) – joining only Meg Ritchie of Arizona as the lone collegians to throw for 18.50m or farther in the shot and 61m or farther in the disc in a career.

Both are on a collision course to Eugene, Oregon, where they’ll crash into another 200+ foot thrower in Tera Novy of Southern California, plus a pair of women who have crossed the 200-feet threshold in prior seasons: two-time NCAA Champ Shelbi Vaughan of Texas A&M and Florida State’s Kellion Knibb.

(Unfortunately, another active 200-foot thrower is unable to compete due to NCAA transition rules. Tarasue Barnett of Grand Canyon also cracked that barrier earlier this season, but Grand Canyon is in the process of moving from DII to DI and cannot compete in DI Championship events).

Never before have more than two women ever thrown 200 feet or farther at the NCAA Championships.

Will this be the year?

Men’s Hammer Throw

Rudy Winkler of Cornell became just the 12th man in college history to break the 75-meter barrier during the NCAA season, throwing 75.10m (246-4) to win the Ivy League title and take the 2016 collegiate lead.

Women’s Heptathlon

Welcome to the 6,000-point club, Amalie Iuel! The junior from Southern California scored 6,011 points for a more than 200-point career-best in winning the Pac-12 Combined Events Championship. She’s now the 25th college woman to score 6000 points or better during the NCAA season, and she checked in at No. 23 on the all-time performers list.

Women’s Steeplechase

With four of the eight fastest times in NCAA DII history entering the weekend, it seemed only a matter of time until Emily Oren of Hillsdale would get the DII record this year. She did it at the GLIAC Championships this weekend, running 9:50.54 to topple the previous record of 9:53.85 (Betsy Graney, GVSU, 2012) by more than three seconds.

Next up: the all-dates DII record of 9:48.91, set at the 2014 USATF Championships by Alicia Nelson of Adams State – Oren’s predecessor as NCAA DII steeplechase champion. Oren will also be chasing Nelson’s NCAA DII Championships record of 9:54.02 later this month.

Men’s Shot Put

Though he snapped his streak of two consecutive weekends setting a collegiate record, Garrett Appier of Pittsburg State still turned in a strong performance to win the MIAA title. He threw 20.43m (67-½) for the No. 5 throw in NCAA DII history (and his fifth-best effort of the season).

Men’s Pole Vault

Less than a month after tying his brother Jake for the NCAA DIII record in the pole vault, Luke Winder finally has full bragging rights over his big bro. Luke cleared 5.51m (18-1) at the CCIW Championships to surpass the previous Winder co-record of 5.50m (18-½) by just one centimeter. Furthermore, he’s the first man in DIII history to clear 18 feet or higher twice during the collegiate season.

Women’s Pole Vault

Kimberly Peterson just missed becoming the fourth – and youngest – woman in NCAA DII history to break the 14-foot barrier in the pole vault. The sophomore from Sioux Falls cleared 4.25m (13-11¼) at the Howard Wood Relays to move into a share of the No. 4 spot on the all-time DII performers list with Katelin Rains of Minnesota State (2008) – who had held the DII record until the 2013 season.

Earlier this season, Peterson’s teammate Courtney Crandall cleared 4.20m (13-9¼) for the No. 6 spot all-time. Should both of them ultimately go higher than 14 feet, they’ll be the first teammates to do so in DII history.

On the DIII front, relative vault newcomer Katherine Pitman of Ithaca is herself drawing nearer to the 14-foot plateau – a height only one woman has ever cleared. She got over 4.18m (13-8½) at the NYSCTC Championships for the sixth-highest bar in DIII history and a share of the No. 4 spot on the all-time DIII performers list.

She’ll have stiff competition moving forward as that one DIII 14-foot vaulter – Cimran Virdi of MIT – is still active.

Men’s 100

Jurgen Themen of Adams State ran 10.20A (at altitude) at the RMAC Championships for a share of the 10th-fastest time in NCAA DII history.

At the NCAA DIII level, Ernest Winters of UW-La Crosse moved to No. 10 on the all-time performers list at 10.48 at the WIAC Championships.

Women’s 5000

Maya Weigel of Pomona-Pitzer became the seventh woman in DIII history to run 16:20.xx or faster over 5000 meters when she ran 16:20.19 at the Occidental Invitational this past weekend. That checked in as the ninth-fastest time in DIII history and makes her the sixth-fastest woman in DIII history.

Women’s 100-Meter Hurdles

Two women in adjoining states ended up in adjoining positions on the all-time DIII 100-meter hurdles performers list. Madison Renfro ran 13.91 in the prelims at the CCIW Outdoor Championships to check in at No. 9 all-time, while Claire Gordee of UW-La Crosse ran 13.92 in the WIAC Championships final to move to No. 10.

Women’s Triple Jump

Already the NCAA DIII record holder in the event, Bria Halama of UW-La Crosse is moving toward bettering her own all-time mark. She won the WIAC title at 12.63m (41-5¼) with a distance just 24cm shy of her DIII standard. It’s the ninth-farthest mark in DIII history.

She may have a fight on her hands, however, as Alexa Wandy of SUNY Geneseo leapt 12.58m (41-3¼) to move to No. 8 on the all-time performers list.