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Track and Field: Notre Dame takes 11 events in outdoor home opener

Joe Meixell | Monday, April 3, 2006

The Irish hosted the Notre Dame Outdoor Opener at Moose Krause Stadium Saturday and recorded victories in 11 events.

Facing a field that included athletes from DePaul, Loyola Chicago, Central Michigan, Hillsdale College and Detroit Mercy College, the squad had to contend with poor weather conditions after previously competing in meets in California and Arizona.

That weather significantly impacted the athletes- the Irish failed to produce any NCAA qualifying marks.

“After the [Cal Poly Invitational], it was pretty frustrating to have to deal with the 45-degree temperature,” said Austin Wechter, who won the men’s 400-meter dash with a time of 49.52 seconds.

Despite the sub-par conditions, some of the Irish athletes did produce outstanding performances. Shot-putter Mike Schubert won the men’s competition with a throw of 15.76 meters, the longest toss of his career. Schubert bettered his previous career-best by almost a full meter and won the event by nearly two meters. The runner-up, Adam Mayhew of Detroit Mercy College, posted a toss of 13.96 meters.

Sophomore sprinter Domenique Manning also topped her previous career-best mark as she won the women’s 100-meter hurdles with a time of 14.23 seconds.

“I thought the weather was really going to impair my running,” Manning said. “I felt really good at the start of the race, though, and I just tried to run to the best of my ability in the conditions that we were in.

“When I heard my time over the intercom, I was shocked.”

Other Notre Dame event winners included Laura Huarte in the javelin, Matt Plaska in the 800 meters, Mike Popejoy in the 5,000 meters, Nicole Yergler in the 400-meter hurdles, Garet Koxlien in the discus, Kate Mattoon in the pole vault and the women’s 4×400-meter relay team.

While no Irish athletes recorded NCAA qualifying figures, many did improve upon their qualifying marks for the Big East Outdoor Championships.

Notre Dame will send athletes to compete at the Miami (Ohio) Invitational in Oxford, Ohio next weekend.

“Hopefully the weather will be a lot better for us [at Miami],” Manning said.