Friday, March 11, 2011

Scott Roth repeats as NCAA indoor pole vault champ...

COLLEGE STATION, Texas--University of Washington senior Scott Roth (left/photo courtesy University of Washington) successfully defended his NCAA indoor pole vault title Friday, clearing 18-0.5 (5.50m) further cementing his place in Washington history. Roth's clutch performance was the highlight of day one for the Huskies at the two-day national meet held at Texas A&M's Gilliam Indoor Track Stadium.

After suffering a hamstring pull one month back at the Husky Classic, Roth thought his chances for a repeat title were over. But after several weeks of rehab, he tested it earlier this week and felt he'd be able to give it a shot.

"I didn't really have expectations; I didn't expect to even be here this year," Roth said, referring to a hamstring injury that sidelined him over the past month. "So that made the feel of the meet entirely different. I just went out there and had fun, was relaxed and talking to people, so it was a really enjoyable competition for me."

After needing three tries to clear 17-6.5 (5.35m), the critical clearance came at 18-0 ½, as Roth cleared on his first try again, a third-consecutive make. Only Minnesota's Ben Peterson was also able to get over, but he did so on his second try, giving Roth the tiebreak edge. Peterson missed three shots at 18-2 ½, and Roth chose to forego his final attempt at the same height after two misses of his own, wanting to preserve his still tender right leg.

Fellow senior Ryan Vu tied for 11th in the pole vault in his final competition as a Husky. Vu was making his NCAA Indoor Championship debut, and matched his finish from the 2010 NCAA Outdoor meet. Vu cleared 17-2 ¾ on his second attempt, but was unable to make it up and over the next bar.

Courtesy of, here is a video interview with Roth after the competiton.

James Cameron made the finals in the men's mile, finishing second in his heat in 4:01.33.

Husky Jeremy Taiwo sits in eighth place after day one of the heptathlon with 3,223 points, trailing Mantas Silkauskas of Kansas State who has 3,347. Fifth-place is just 23 points away from Taiwo. His 3,223 points is 143 points more than he had at the UW Invitational, his only previous heptathlon this year, when he set the school record.

Washington State's Joe Abbott made the finals in the 800m, as the former US junior champion ran a prelim time in the men's 800m of 1-minute, 48.80 seconds which was the fifth-best time of the 16 men running in the prelims, as well as fifth-fastest in his heat.

Cougar sophomore Holly Parent cleared 5-feet, 8 3/4 inches (1.74m) in the women's high jump for 15th place. Arizona sophomore Brigetta Barrett won the event after clearing 6-2 3/4 (1.90m).

Gig Harbor's Miles Unterreiner from Stanford finished 15th in the 5000 meter run, clocking 14:33.69.

Former Nathan Hale standout Abdi Hassan helped Arizona to a fifth place finish in the distance medley relay, as he ran 2:56.58 on the 1200m leg, as the Wildcats finished in 9:30.33. Michael Berry from Rainier Beach HS ran a 400 leg of 46.62, and had Oregon in good position, but anchor Matthew Centrowitz lost a shoe on the anchor leg, as the Ducks finished tenth in 9:48.00.

Complete day 1 results are available here.

NOTE:  The NCAA, the University of Washington, and Washington State University contributed to this report.

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