March 6, 2000
UCLA senior Seilala Sua leads a contingent of nine Bruin women into this weekend's NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships, held Friday and Saturday (March 10-11) and hosted by the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville.
Last week, according to Trackwire's national rankings, the Bruin women were third in the U. S. with 38 points, behind No. 1 Texas (56) and No. 2 South Carolina (39). At last spring's NCAA Outdoor, the Bruin women placed second behind Texas, with the Longhorns winning with 62 points and the Bruins in second-place with 60. Texas has won the last two NCAA Indoor and Outdoor women's championships.
Sua enters the meet leading the U. S. collegiate ranks in the shot put (56-4 1/2) and is also qualified in the 25lb. weight throw (65-11 3/4). At last weekend's USA Indoor held in Atlanta, Sua placed fourth in the shot put (56-1) and third in the weight throw (65-11 1/2). From Ft. Lauderdale, FL, Sua is the defending NCAA Outdoor shot put and discus champion as well as the two-time defending USA discus champion.
She will be joined in the throws by UCLA junior Christina Tolson and Bruin sophomore Chaniqua Ross. Tolson, who last season transferred to UCLA from CS Northridge, last week at the USA Indoor placed eighth (52-10) in the shot put and sixth in the weight throw (62-9 1/2). Ross last weekend at Atlanta was seventh (53-0 1/4) in the shot put.
Joining the Bruins' three throwers will be (qualifying marks in parenthesis)-in the 60m, junior Shakedia Jones (7.37), in the pole vault, sophomore Tracy O'Hara (13-10) and junior Erica Hoernig (13-0 1/4), in the high jump, sophomore Darnesha Griffith (5-11 1/2), sophomore Keyon Soley in the long jump (21-0 1/2) and senior Deana Simmons in the triple jump (42-8 1/4).
O'Hara leads the collegiate ranks in the pole vault and placed fifth (13-10) at the USA meet, with Hoernig 13th (13-0 1/4). Jones is a six-time outdoor and indoor All-America, Griffith last summer won the USA Junior title in the high jump, Soley last spring in the long jump won the Pac-10 and earned All-America outdoor honors and Simmons is a three-time indoor and outdoor All-America in the triple jump.
For the Bruin men, Strutzel qualified in the 800m with a time of 1:48.82. Last summer, Strutzel set the school record in the 800m (1:45.81) and at last year's NCAA Indoor, he ran on UCLA's American Record-setting distance medley relay (9:33.17) and was third in the 800m. McLaughlin qualified with a vault of 17-6 1/2 and last spring placed third at the Pac-10.