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May 20, 2001

COLUMBUS, Ohio– The Ohio State men’s and women’s track teams rallied to place second and fifth, respectively, in the third and final day of competition at the 2001 Big Ten Championships in Bloomington, Ind., at the Robert C. Haugh Track and Field Complex. The second-place finish ties the men’s highest score since 1994. The men captured four individual championships and Top 5 finishes in four other events. The women recorded one individual championship and placed in the Top 5 in eight events.

Ohio State’s big guns came through for the men, with victories by Andrew Pierce (Sr., Yellow Springs, Ohio) and Ian Conner (Sr., Lexington, Ohio). Pierce recorded an automatic NCAA qualifying time of 44.94 on his way to victory in the 400-meter dash. The time is almost a full second faster than his previous season high, and is the second fastest 400 time in the NCAA this year. Pierce also took third in the 200, falling just short of Minnesota’s Tom Gerding and winner Contrell Ash from Indiana. Conner, who won the 3,000 steeplechase championship on Saturday, took the title in the 5,000-meter run with a time of 14:30.78. J.J O’Reilly (Jr., Dover, Ohio) took sixth in the event, posting a time of 14:39.42. Following closely behind was Derrick Butler (So., Cincinnati, Ohio), finishing eighth with a time of 14:43.88.

Also taking home first place awards were Nosa Ehimwenman (Fr., Homewood, Ill.) and George Hoover (So., Erie, Pa.). Ehimwenman entered the triple jump competition ranked No. 4 in the conference, but snatched the title after recording a season-best mark of 15.62 meters. Indiana’s Hasaan Reddick, ranked No. 2 in the conference, finished only .05 meters behind to earn second place. Hoover, the conference leader in the javelin throughout the season, lived up to expectations, claiming the crown with a provisional qualifying toss of 67.92 meters. John Ferguson (So., Delaware, Ohio) finished ninth in the event, recording a mark of 59.22 meters.
Rob Myers (So., Rushville, Ohio) just missed an individual title in the 1,500, losing a photo-finish to Wisconsin’s Isiah Festa. Myers crossed the finish line at 3:50.40 with Festa breaking the tape at 3:50.49. Joel Brown (So., Baltimore, Md.) was also better than advertised, taking third in the 110-meter high hurdles with a time of 14.04. The Buckeyes edged past their season high in the 4×400-meter relay, finishing with a provisional qualifying time of 3:05.07. Unfortunately, a strong run by Minnesota left Ohio State in second place.

The sprinters led the way for the women’s team, winning one event and taking Top 5 finishes in six others. Sprinters accounted for 53 of the team’s 90.50 points in the competition. Onica Fraser (So., Brooklyn, N.Y.) continued to dominate, winning the 400-meter dash with a sizzling time of 52.72. Tina Johnson (Sr., Burlington, N.J.) crossed the finish line only .06 seconds later to claim second. Both times were personal season bests and NCAA provisional qualifying times. All-American Donica Merriman (Sr., Trotwood, Ohio) raced to a season best time of 12.82 in the 100-meter hurdles on her way to a second place finish. She also took fourth in the 100, despite running a season best and NCAA qualifying time of 11.48. Dalanda Jackson (Fr., Shaker Heights, Ohio) captured second in the 400-meter hurdles to complete the individual sprint events. Ohio State later placed third in both the 4×100 and the 4×400 relays.

Katy Craig (Jr. Hilliard, Ohio) shattered Ohio State’s season high on discus with a toss of 49.62 meters to earn fourth in the event. The previous high of 44.44 meters was set by Craig at the Sea Ray Relays in Knoxville, Tenn., April 12.

The Buckeyes will not be in competition again until the NCAA Championships May 30-June 1 in Eugene, Ore., at the University of Oregon’s Hayward Track and Field Complex.

Big Ten Conference Championships, May 18-20, 2001 Bloomington, Ind., Robert C. Haugh Track and Field Complex Ohio State Event Finals

Men’s Team Scores 1. Wisconsin (135) 2. Ohio State (117.50) 3. Penn State (98.83) 4. Minnesota (93) 5. Iowa (91) 6. Indiana (81.67) 7. Purdue (75) 7. Michigan State (43) 8. Michigan (43) 10. Illinois (41)

200-meter dash 1. Contrell Ash Indiana 21.71 2. Tom Gerding Minnesota 20.78 3. Andrew Pierce Ohio State 20.81 SB, @ 4. Ryan Olkowski Penn State 20.88 5. Ike Okenwa Michigan 21.07

400-meter dash 1. Andrew Pierce Ohio State 44.94 SB, # 2. Tom Gerding Minnesota 45.38 3. Jabari Pride Wisconsin 46.74 4. Andy Wohlin Minnesota 46.90 5. Ben Karcz Penn State 46.92

1,500-meter run 1. Isiah Festa Wisconsin 3:50.39 2. Rob Myers Ohio State 3:50.40 3. Jared Cordes Wisconsin 3:50.48 4. Brian Turner Michigan 3:51.08 5. Nate Uselding Wisconsin 3:51.20

5,000-meter run 1. Ian Conner Ohio State 14:30.78 2. Isiah Festa Wisconsin 14:35.93 3. Jason Vanderhoff Wisconsin 14:36.13 4. John Kronforst Illinois 14:37.63 5. James Carney Penn State 14:38.32 6. J.J. O’Reilly Ohio State 14:39.42 8. Derrick Butler Ohio State 14:43.88

110-meter hurdles 1. T.J. Nelson Wisconsin 13.49 2. Guy Rose Penn State 13.56 3. Joel Brown Ohio State 14.04 4. Jon Mungen Wisconsin 14.13 5. Jasmin Alverson Michigan State 14.24

400-meter hurdles 1. Brian Derby Penn State 49.77 2. Sherman Armstrong Illinois 59.91 3. Adam Kunkel Iowa 50.82 4. Matt Rogers Wisconsin 50.96 5. Mikael Jakobson Minnesota 50.99 6. Courtney Cornwall Ohio State 51.91

4×100-meter relay 1. Iowa 40.15 2. Minnesota 40.34 3. Penn State 40.40 4. Wisconsin 40.63 5. Indiana 41.10 7. Ohio State 41.28

4×400-meter relay 1. Minnesota 3:05.07 2. Ohio State 3:05.42 @ 3. Iowa 3:06.06 4. Wisconsin 3:06.74 5. Penn State 3:09.23

Men’s Triple Jump 1. Nosa Ehimwenman Ohio State 15.62 meters (51’03”) 2. Hasaan Reddick Indiana 15.57 meters (51’01”) 3. Oded Padan Michigan 15.11 meters (49’07”) 4. Amukela Gwebu Purdue 14.99 meters (49’02”) 5. Leon Woolford Penn State 14.74 meters (48’04”) 11. Billy Mills Ohio State 13.42 meters (44’00”)

Javelin Throw 1. George Hoover Ohio State 67.92 meters (222’10”) 2. Bill Newman Iowa 67.60 meters (221’09”) 3. Dan Ralph Iowa 65.40 meters (214’07”) 4. Matt Moyer Penn State 62.50 meters (205’01”) 5. Andy Derr Michigan 62.38 meters (204’08”) 9. John Ferguson Ohio State 59.22 meters (194’03”)

Women’s Team Scores 1. Indiana (140) 2. Purdue (122.50) 3. Minnesota (101.25) 4. Michigan (99.25) 5. Ohio State (90.50) 6. Wisconsin (83) 7. Illinois (75.25) 7. Penn State (65) 8. Iowa (23.25) 10. Michigan State (18)

100-meter dash 1. Rachelle Boone Indiana 11.32 2. Danielle Carruthers Indiana 11.42 3. Connie Moore Penn State 11.44 4. Donica Merriman Ohio State 11.48 SB 5. Lorraine Dunlop Indiana 11.49

400-meter dash 1. Onica Fraser Ohio State 52.72 SB, @ 2. Tina Johnson Ohio State 52.86 SB 3. Tia Trent Indiana 53.37 4. Carly Knazze Michigan 53.46 5. Krissy Liphardt Purdue 53.89

800-meter run 1. Rachel Strutz Michigan 2:07.76 2. Kim Jordan Purdue 2:08.84 3. Jessica Shuster Minnesota 2:09.34 4. Courtney Bell Indiana 2:10.03 5. Brooke Patterson Ohio State 2:11.39 SB

5,000-meter run 1. Liz Reusser Wisconsin 17:03.76 2. Michelle Lilienthal Wisconsin 17:05.52 3. Ann Somerville Michigan State 17:12.16 4. Leslie Patterson Wisconsin 17:19.64 5. Kim Snyder Purdue 17:23.22 8. Kati Stevens Ohio State 17:48.13

100-meter Hurdles 1. Perdita Felicien Illinois 12.73 2. Donica Merriman Ohio State 12.82 SB 3. Susanna Kallur Illinois 12.85 4. Jenny Kallur Illinois 13.30 5. Toyin Augustus Penn State 13.36 7. Dalanda Jackson Ohio State 13.51

400-meter Hurdles 1. Angela Craft Purdue 58.37 2. Dalanda Jackson Ohio State 59.42 SB 3. Shani Marks Minnesota 59.67 4. Shalina Rankin Michigan 1:00.86 5. Carolyn Estes Illinois 1:00.87

4×100-meter relay 1. Indiana 44.01 2. Illinois 44.47 3. Ohio State 45.31 4. Penn State 45.31 5. Purdue 45.35

4×400-meter relay 1. Purdue 3:39.01 2. Indiana 3:39.53 3. Ohio State 3:40.11 4. Minnesota 3:43.20 5. Illinois 3:45.20

High Jump 1. Nicole Denamor Michigan 1.74 meters (5’08”) 2. Jen Aylward Penn State 1.74 meters (5’08”) 3. Kacey Childs Iowa 1.74 meters (5’08”) 4. Camee Williams Illinois 1.70 meters (5’07”) 5. Natalie Gentry Ohio State 1.70 meters (5’07”) 10. Tami Smith Ohio State 1.66 meters (5’05”)

Discus 1. Gia Lewis Illinois 53.48 meters (175’05”) 2. Aubrey Schmitt Minnesota 53.24 meters (174’08”) 3. Melissa Bickett Michigan 52.20 meters (171’03”) 4. Heather Colyer Indiana 50.08 meters (164’04”) 5. Katy Craig Ohio State 49.62 meters (162’09”) 12. Erin Carter Ohio State 44.40 meters (145’08”)