Vikings take leaps and bounds

In this year’s Big Sky Championship, the PSU track teams provedthat hard work and dedication really do pay off. Fortunately forPSU, the Viking teams continue to become more competitive and gavetheir fellow Big Sky athletes a real run for their money.

Both men’s and women’s teams won the first outdoor open of theseason in Sacramento Saturday, March 6. Throughout the season,numerous Viking athletes placed first, earned cumulative teampoints and began qualifying for bigger events. 17 women and eightmen qualified for the Big Sky Conference Championships. Three ofthese including senior Lisa Gunderson, freshman Jordan Senn andfreshman Andrea Clarke also qualified for the NCAA Western Regionalto be held May 28.

The Vikings competed at the 2004 Big Sky Conference OutdoorTrack and Field Championship Wednesday, May 12, through Saturday,May 15 where Portland State continued to exhibit year-to-yearimprovement. For the last two years both teams finished in eighthplace. This year, women finished seventh with a 66-point total. -31.5 points more than last year’s 34.5-point total.

“The women’s 66 points is by far the most points we’ve everscored,” said Portland State’s head coach, Kebba Tolbert. Tolbertalso mentioned that he thought PSU was “very competitive” and thathe was “really proud of what our athletes accomplished.”

Tolbert was right about the team’s accomplishments. Junior EnaShemi was clearly PSU’s stellar women’s athlete last weekend. Shemiwon the 100-meter conference title.

Head Coach Tolbert had “great” things to say about Shemi’svictory, “Ena was great. She really gave everything she had. Shereally stepped up and led the team this weekend.” Shemi also wonthe Big Sky Indoor title in the 200m dash earlier this season.

Seniors Evan Garich and Keith Gill smashed more records at theBig Sky Championships. Garich replaced his school record of 1:53.90in the 800m with his fourth place Big Sky finish of 1:52.41. “Evanis a great Big Sky competitor and he knows how to step up”, saidTolbert. Gill beat last year’s record of 14.68 seconds by JayWilliams with his own 14.15 finish in the 110m hurdles. Tolbertsaid, “Until three weeks ago, Keith hadn’t broken 15-flat in the110’s. So to come here and run 14.15 is awesome. Keith has workedhard.”

Summing up the 2004 PSU track and field season, Tolbert said itbest, “There was a lot of competitive spirit amongst these athletesand I thought they competed hard.”


PSU women’s track Big SkyChampionship results

Ena Shemi
100m dash (11.79) 1st place
200m dash (24.38) 2nd place

Brady Randall
Heptathlon 4th Place
400m hurdles (1:02.30)4th place

Ashley Quay
High jump (1.66m) 6th place
Long jump (5.19m) 13th place

Lisa Gunderson
High jump (1.70m) 2nd place

Andrea Clarke
Javelin throw (42.67m)5th place

Staci Bielenberg
800m run (2:14.63) 5th place


PSU men’s track Big SkyChampionship results

Jordan Senn Javelin throw (64.65m) 4th place

Keith Gill 110m hurdles (14.15) 3rd place

Kennith Mackins 100m dash (11.05) 7th place

Shaun Strauka Shot put (15.82m) 7th place

Evan Garich 800m race (1:52.41) 4th place

Mike Kebbe 1500m run (3:57.91) 7th place

Michael Davenport 5000m race (15:11.20) 6th place