Feb. 14, 2009
USAF ACADEMY, Colo. - Junior Nick Frawley set an Academy record in the pole vault, as the Air Force track and field team wrapped up competition at the 19th-annual Air Force Invitational on Saturday, Feb. 14. On his final attempt, Frawley cleared 18'1" to win the event title.
With a clearance that automatically qualifies him to the NCAA Indoor Championships, Frawley edged the previous record of 18'0½" that Paul Gensic (2005) and David Pike (1995) shared. The mark also topped Gensic's Junior Class record in the pole vault.
That clearance is the third-best in Mountain West Conference history. Additionally, based on statistics heading into this week's competitions, Frawley's mark is a new season-best for the conference and the third-best clearance in the nation.
The men received multiple points in the 5000-meter run, highlighted by sophomore Justin Tyner's third-place time of 15:38.89. Senior Scott Balcao and freshman Jonathan Rock finished sixth (16:10.10) and seventh (16:11.31), respectively.
Air Force also had multiple scorers in the mile, taking two of the top three spots. Senior Sebastian Ortiz placed second in 4:20.83, while classmate Matt Williams took third in 4:22.82. Freshmen James Walmsley and Matthew Cain also scored for the Falcons, placing sixth (4:29.39) and eighth (4:34.64), respectively.
The 4x400-meter relay team of Matthew Jones, Bryce Bergman, Max Lutton and Tyler Stanley finished fourth with a time of 3:22.62. Senior Kellen Curry finished sixth in the 60-meter hurdles, clocking a time of 8:31, while junior Joel Nolan placed eighth in 8:36. Nolan also tallied points for the Falcons in the pole vault, as he cleared 16'2¾" to place seventh. Additionally, freshman Max Lutton crossed the finish line of the 400-meter dash in 51.58 to place ninth
On the women's side, junior Ally Romanko clocked a time of 5:22.68 to place second in the mile. Junior Danielle Snider finished fifth in the 5000-meter run, while classmate Melissa Beerse earned the same placement in the pole vault with a clearance of 11'11¾".
The 4x400-meter relay team of Jessica Mapes, Becca Burditt, Margaret Weingart and Danielle McCarty finished sixth with a time of 4:05.99. Sophomore Gloriemar Torre Santiago scored for the Falcons in the 800-meter run, placing seventh with a time of 2:24.03. Freshman Amanda Wineman rounded out the scoring, as she tied for 10th in the high jump with a clearance of 5'1".
And even though she didn't score for the Falcons, junior Nicole Elliott had an impressive day in the 60-meter hurdles. Elliott clocked a career-best 9.08 in the qualifying round and went on to shatter that time in the finals. Elliott clocked 8.97 to finish 11th. That time is the fifth-fastest in Academy history.
The meet was suspended for over three hours, when intermittent power outages caused disruptions throughout the Cadet Field House and the northern portion of the Air Force Academy.
The Falcons close out the regular indoor season on Friday, Feb. 20, when they travel to Laramie, Wyo., for the Robert Shine Invitational. It will be the final tune-up for Air Force, before hosting the Mountain West Conference Championships on Feb. 26-28.