Saturday, June 9, 2012

Geubelle reflects on winning, then losing the NCAA triple jump title...

DES MOINES, Iowa--A few hours upon the completion of the NCAA triple jump championship Saturday at Drake Stadium, University Place resident Andrea Geubelle (left/photo by Mike Scott) of the University of Kansas took a few minutes to talk to about the circumstances from apparently winning a national championship with a wind-aided mark of 46-11 3/4 (14.32m) to being relegated to third place.

Here are the facts:

In round 4, Geubelle, who was in third at the end of three with a jump of 45-5 (13.84m), jumped what was measured at 46-11 3/4 to take the lead from Ganna Demadova of Southern Missisippi, who jumped 46-7 1/4 (14.20m) in round one.

With no improvements by the top three in round 5--Demadova, Geubelle, and San Diego State's Shanieka Thomas, who had a best of 45-6 1/2 in round 3--Thomas answered with a jump of 45-9 3/4 (13.96m) to solidify her third place position.

Geubelle then had a long foul that was in the mid-47 foot range, according to her.

After the competition, the NCAA has a 30 minute rule where coaches can appeal the outcome of an event.

Southern Miss coach Kevin Stephen used the 30 minute rule to protest that Geubelle fouled that round 4 jump that apparently took the lead. After a review by a panel, they upheld the appeal, and gave Demadova the national title, with Thomas' 45-9 3/4 moving her to second, and Geubelle's 45-5 from round 3 giving her a third place finish.

What was curious about this competition was that no plasticine was used on the board, according to Geubelle. In horizontal jump competitions, plasticine is typically used on the front edge of the takeoff board as an aid for both the athlete and the jump judge to determine a fair or foul jump. When a jumper fouls, the jumper usually is shown the mark they made on the board so that they can adjust their approach for the next round.

Instead of plasticine, the meet used a Hawkeye camera stationed at the board. At the time of the jump, both Geubelle and the official thought it was a legal jump, as there was no indication of a foul.

The video review of Geubelle's jump indicated that it was a mighty close foul, though with a plasticine board, it would be clear that it's a foul, as her shoe would have made a mark. With the naked eye at real speed, it appears that Geubelle had a perfect jump off the board.

"The main controversy was that the way it (the protest) went down wasn't right. Me and the coaches had absolutely no idea that a protest was underway," she said.

What she is upset about is that had she known that she had fouled at the time of the jump, that she could have made an adjustment on the runway for the next two rounds.

Would Geubelle have won with a jump in round 5 or 6 after making an adjustment? No one will ever know, as she never had a chance to make that change to her run up, and she went into the final two rounds thinking that the jump was fair.

"It's one of the worst feelings in the world to know that you were announced as the national champion, and find out at the awards stand that you were third."

She claims that meet officials told her that the protest by the Southern Mississippi staff happened sometime after her jump, but before the end of the competition. She also said that the Golden Eagle coaching staff told the Kansas coaches that the protest was made after the conclusion of the triple jump.

Semantics, or is someone trying to cover something up?

Besides Geubelle's third place finish in the triple jump, the Jayhawks had some misfortune in the 4 x 400 meter relay, as they were disqualified for a violation, which at the end of the meet gave Kansas a tie for fourth place at 28 points with Clemson, instead of at the very least 33 points (a Geubelle win and an eighth place finish for the relay) and sole possession of fourth place, a fact she made known, saying "the girls on my team worked so hard at this meet to get where we are."

Here's some discussion on this from the Track & Field News message board, along with a post from written by Tom Keegan.

Geubelle will stay in Lawrence to train before flying to Eugene, a four hour drive from University Place, a suburb of Tacoma, to compete in the US Olympic Trials triple jump competition, which will be held on June 23rd, with the finals at 5:45 pm on June 25th.

Track & Field News' Jack Pfeifer has projected Geubelle to finish sixth, in the magazine's latest issue. She has the best mark (all conditions) by an American this season of 46-6 (14.17m) set at the NCAA West Preliminary round in Austin. Erica McLain currently has the best legal mark this season of 45-9 3/4 (13.96m) by an American.

Amanda Smock is the only American in the qualifying period that began May 1, 2011 that owns a mark above the Olympic B standard of 46-3 1/4 (14.10m) at 46-6 1/4 (14.18m), set last August. The Olympic Games A standard is 46-11 (14.30m), which potentially makes the Trials triple jump competition a winner-take all affair if three Americans cannot hit the standards.

“I’m going to go out swinging at the trials,” said Geubelle, who is smaller than most and not as fast as many she routinely beats. “I would think that people should probably be a little more afraid because I’m (ticked) as I ever could be right now. ... I don’t think I’ve ever gone into a meet (ticked) off, but I can’t imagine it will hurt me.”

"It's not going to kill me, but I think this experience will make me stronger. I'm going to look at that third place award and use it as motivation," she said.


CoachKevinStephen said...

These are the facts:

At the instant of the jump there was absolutely no doubt in my mind that the official on the board missed the foul. I made the decision to protest less than two minutes after the jump. The protest was on file less than seven minutes after the jump. I personally informed my counterpart at Kansas about the protest. We sat together when the NCAA rep informed us of the decision. We were told that three officials independently reviewed the film and all ruled that it was a foul. My counterpart asked if he could see the film but was told that it was against policy. We were told, "The three officials each said the foul was very clear and couldn't see how the official on the board missed it."

The student athlete with the longest legal jump won the event.

The most unfortunate part was that Andrea was not informed until after the end of competition. She is an outstanding athlete with a bright future.

Mike said...

The only meets held in the US (that I am aware of) that use plasticine are the USATF National Championship meets. It is not a common practice on any other level in the US.

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