Recap Of 800 Heats From Day 1 Of 2011 NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships

By: Letsrun.com
March 11, 2011

Men's 800: Coming into NCAAs, this was viewed as a totally wide open event, as all 16 competitors came in seeded within 1.06 of each other and only one finalist was back from last year. After Friday's first round, the race is even more wide open, as that one finalist, Zach Mellon of Wisconsin, was eliminated along with four of the top eight seeds.

The 800 prelims were particularly tough for many of the "Super Sophs" as in addition to Mellon,  Elijah Greer of Oregon (the #1 seed) and Casimir Loxsom of Penn State (last year's world junior silver medallist) failed to make the final. Greer and Loxsom both are now 0-3 in making it to the finals of NCAAs in their careers.

Heat 1
George Mason sophomore Chris Carrington had the lead at 400 (52.77) and 600 (1:20.07), but in the end, Alabama's Fred Sameoi looked to be the class of either heat as he got the win with a 27.19 last 200 that gave him a 1:47.80 win. That fast finish obviously was better than anyone in this heat and far superior to everyone in the second heat, which ultimately was only closed in 27.82 in a much slower race - 1:49.02.

Texas A&M's Michael Preble looked good in this heat and only finished .08 behind Sameoi, but that was because Sameoi let up at the end. UConn's Michael Rutt had to work hard to get the final automatic qualifying spot (1:48.63), but ultimately the fourth and fifth place finishers in Carrington (1:48.63) and Washington State's Joe Abbott (1:48.80) would get in to the final on time.

Last year's finalist, Zach Mellon of Wisconsin, was never a factor, as he was next to last at 400, last at 600 and next to last at the finish. The only guy behind him was Georgia's Aaron Evans, who had been third at the outdoor meet last spring.

[View Splits]

 Place Athlete Name Yr Affiliation Time Qual
 1 Fred Samoei SR Alabama 1:47.80
 2 Michael Preble JR Texas A&M 1:47.88
 3 Michael Rutt SR Connecticut 1:48.55
 4 Chris Carrington SO George Mason 1:48.63
 5 Joe Abbott JR Washington St. 1:48.80
 6 Sharif Webb SR Kentucky 1:48.87  
 7 Zach Mellon SO Wisconsin 1:51.62  
 8 Aaron Evans JR Georgia 1:52.67  
 

Heat 2

Heat two featured a lot of elbowing and jostling as the pace slowed considerably on the 2nd lap and the field got bunched a bit, as Minnesota's Harun Abda, the Big 10 600 champ indoors this year, had the lead at 400 (53.47). At 600, UCLA senior Cory Primm, who was 6th outdoors last year, had the lead (1:20.73) but three guys were within .23 of him. Everyone started to press to get one of the three auto qualifying spots and the interesting thing was how slow the final 200 ended up being. Primm would fade to 6th as he could only manage a 29.79.

The heat winner ended up being Iowa's Erik Sowinsky, who went from fifth to first on the last 200 by running 27.82 to win in 1:49.02. Wisconsin's Zach Beth ended up 2nd in 1:49.03 as Abda would nab the final auto qualifying spot in 1:49.09 - just ahead of Loxsom, who ran 1:49.37. Abda defeated Loxsom in the 600 at Big 10s as well.

The #1 seed in the event, Oregon's Elijah Greer, was never a factor and finished last in 1:54.48. The buzz before the race started was that Greer was sick and it looked like it, as he went out dead last in 26.52 and never really got in it. Post-race reports are indicating that Greer was vomiting for much of the day.


Heat 2 [View Splits]

 Place Athlete Name Yr Affiliation Time Qual
 1 Erik Sowinski JR Iowa 1:49.02
 2 Zach Beth SR Wisconsin 1:49.03
 3 Harun Abda SO Minnesota 1:49.09
 4 Casimir Loxsom SO Penn State 1:49.37  
 5 Chuol Dey SO Arkansas 1:50.43  
 6 Cory Primm SR UCLA 1:50.52  
 7 Elijah Greer SO Oregon 1:54.48  
 FS Joey Roberts JR Texas A&M    

Women's 800:

The big news out of heat one was that the event's top seed in Lea Wallace of Sacramento State was eliminated.

Heat 1
Arizona's Christina Rodgers won the heat as she led wire to wire. Also qualifying were the 2nd and third place finishers in Lacey Bleazard of BYU and Jillian Smith of Michigan. Except for the elimination of Wallace, the heat went pretty much according to form, as Rodgers and Smith had the second and third best seed times in the heat and Bleazard, who used to run as Lacey Cramer, was the champion in this event as a freshman and the runner-up last year as a sophomore.

Heat 1 [View Splits]

 Place Athlete Name Yr Affiliation Time Qual
 1 Christina Rodgers SR Arizona 2:06.65
 2 Lacey Bleazard JR BYU 2:06.78
 3 Jillian Smith SO Michigan 2:06.80
 4 Brittany Hall SR LSU 2:07.00  
 5 Laura Roesler FR Oregon 2:07.16  
 6 Lea Wallace SR Sacramento St. 2:07.61  
 7 Purity Biwott SR Texas Tech 2:08.31  
 8 Stephanie Brown SO Arkansas 2:09.33  
 

Heat 2
Former prep phenom Chanelle Price looked great in winning this heat comfortably in 2:04.17 as the top five finishers all advanced to the final. Two of those not advancing included BYU's Katie Palmer and LSU's Charlene Lipsey, who came in seeded third and seventh respectively with seed times under 2:05.00.


Heat 2 [View Splits]

 Place Athlete Name Yr Affiliation Time Qual
 1 Chanelle Price JR Tennessee 2:04.17
 2 Sofie Persson JR Mississippi 2:04.96
 3 Bethany Praska SR Iowa 2:05.01
 4 Rebecca Addison SO Michigan 2:05.02
 5 Heather Wilson JR Connecticut 2:05.76
 6 Katie Palmer JR BYU 2:06.49  
 7 Charlene Lipsey SO LSU 2:08.10  
 8 Renisha Robinson SR Sacramento St. 2:11.62

*LRC Day 1 NCAA Coverage: *5,000m Recaps: Unheralded Leonard Korir Storms To NCAA Meet Record, Jackie Areson Impresses, Mia Behm Surprises Everyone
*NCAA Day 1: DMR: Villanova's Reid Outkicks Oregon's Hasay, BYU's Miles Batty Holds Off Incredible 3:53 Anchor From Andy Bayer (video of last laps)
*Recap Of Mile Heats From Day 1 Of 2011 NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships
*Recap Of 800 Heats From Day 1 Of 2011 NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships

*Day 1 Photos

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