Ozorai Leads USC In Hammer Time At Ben Brown Invitational|
March 9, 2012
USC kicked off competition at the Ben Brown Invitational in Fullerton, Calif. in style today (March 9) as USC's female hammer throwers captured five of the top seven spots, with three posting top 10 all-time marks by a Trojan, including Jenny Ozorai who posted the second-farthest throw in school history. In addition, Alitta Boyd competed in the long jump at the 2012 NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships in Nampa, Id.
The sophomore Ozorai stole the show in Fullerton with a personal-best throw of 223-4 (68.08m) to win the competition and move from third to second on the Trojans' all-time list in the event. Ozorai's PR had been 216-11 (66.12m) set before she came to USC from her native Hungary. Ozorai's 2011 season best of 212-3 (64.70m), which she set on April 30 in winning the hammer competition at the USC-UCLA Dual Meet, had moved her into third place on USC's all-time list. Ozorai passed Julianna Tudja who threw 218-9 om 2003 and her mark trails only Eva Orban's school record of 230-3 set in 2008.
"I thought the meet went really well, said Ozorai. "I threw a new PR with my first throw and because of this I could compete feeling free and mostly I could throw as I have been practicing. My best throw was the second throw (68.08m) which put me in second place on USC all-time women hammer list. I was very happy that I could open up with this mark and I am very motivated and excited about this season."
Also setting a PR with a throw of 212-9 (64.83m) was redshirt senior Marissa Minderler who placed third in the competition and improved her fourth-place standing on USC's all-time list. Redshirt senior Jade Niemeyer also broke the 200-foot barrier with a big PR of 201-2 (61.31m) to move into ninth place on USC's all-time hammer list. Niemeyer placed fourth in the competition, meaning USC women's hammer throwers have captured the top five spots in the first two meets this season and five of the top seven in the other.
Placing sixth and also setting a PR was redshirt senior Tamara Baumann with a throw of 184-11 (56.36m). Redshirt junior Ashley Pyka took seventh place with a throw of 177-6 (54.09m) and freshman Alexandra Collatz placed 11th with a mark of 165-8 (50.49m). Other USC females throwing today were redshirt junior Farren Benjamin (114-7) and redshirt sophomore Stephanie Hoffer (123-1). Trojan males competing at the Ben Brown Invitational were Eric Stein (165-1, 50.33m) and Beau Falgout (144-0, 45.90m).
Boyd had a strong effort at the NCAA Indoor Championships in Idaho, placing 10th with a long jump of 20-3.50, missing the finals by one centimeter. What made it especially impressive is that Boyd has been battling injuries since early February which have kept her from training, first injuring her hip at an indoor meet on Feb. 4 and then straining her knee at the Rossi Relays on Feb. 25. The winner of the NCAA indoor title was Whitney Gibson of TCU who set the meet record with a leap of 22-8 and the eighth-place finisher had a mark of 20-9.
The rest of the USC track and field team will be in action at the Ben Brown Invitational tomorrow.