UCLA's Title IX 40: Monique Henderson, Kelly Rulon
Oct. 24, 2012
UCLA Athletics continues its celebration of the 40th Anniversary of Title IX with a series of profiles of UCLA's Title IX 40. This group of 40 Bruin women were game-changers in the Title IX era. Up next are NCAA champions and Olympic gold medalists Monique Henderson and Kelly Rulon.
Monique Henderson, Track & Field (2002-05)
Two-time Olympic gold medalist, an NCAA Outdoor and Indoor champion and the winner of the 2005 Honda Award for track and field, Monique Henderson is one of the great 400m and relay runners in the history of UCLA and USA women's track & field.
Henderson won two NCAA event titles. As a senior in 2005, she captured the 400m (50.10, NCAA meet record) at the NCAA outdoor championships. At the 2002 NCAA indoor as a freshman, she ran the second leg of UCLA's winning distance medley relay (10:58.19, school record). As a junior in 2004 at the NCAA outdoors, she helped lead UCLA to the team championship by placing second in the 400m and running anchor legs on UCLA's 4 X 100 (second place) and 4 X 400m (fourth place) relays. Henderson's anchor leg in the 4 X 400m relay enabled the Bruins to place fourth and capture the 2004 team title by one point over LSU, 69-68.
During her four-year UCLA career, Henderson was a four-time Western Regional champion (400m champion in 2003, 2004, 2005, 200m champion in 2005) and won back-to-back 200m and 400m titles at the 2004 and 2005 Pac-10 championships. Additionally, she ran the anchor on three conference winning 4 X 100m and 4X 400m relays. In 2002, following her freshman year when Henderson was the Pac-10 Newcomer of the Year, she was the world junior champion in the 400m and a member of the U. S. winning 4 X 400m relay.
On the UCLA career charts, Henderson's 49.96, set at the 2005 USA Track & Field nationals) is No. 1 in 400m school history, and her 200m mark of 22.71 (2004) is tied for third all-time. On the all-time Bruin relay chart, Henderson's anchor leg on the UCLA 4 X 100m relay (43.43) to win the 2004 Pac-10 title is the No. 2 all-time mark, and her anchor leg on UCLA's 4 X 400m relay (3:27.57) on at the 2003 NCAA outdoors is No. 1.
Competing internationally for the USA, Henderson won two Olympic gold medals on the 4 X 400m relay. Henderson ran the third leg in the 2008 Olympics for Team USA in 50.06 before handing off the baton to Sanya Richards, who crossed the line in a gold medal-winning time of 3:18.54. In 2004, after her junior year in Westwood, she won gold in the event at the Athens, Greece Olympics, running the second leg (49.9 split) for Team USA, which finished in 3:19.01, at-the-time No. 4 on the U.S. list.
Henderson ran personal-bests of 22.71 in the 200m (2004) and 49.96 (2005) in the 400m. In World 400m rankings she was twice rated in the Top 10 (2005, No. 10/2006, No. 7) and in U. S. rankings during an eight-year period (2001-08), on seven occasions she was rated in the 400m Top 10, including No. 3 in both 2005 and 2006.
Off the track, she has developed sports and fitness programs for the YMCA and the Hershey's Fitness Movement. She now runs a fitness business, Monique Henderson's Boot Camp, and provides private coaching and training to individuals and athletes and also worked as the Olympic analyst for San Diego NBC. Henderson was nominated and inducted into the San Diego County Women's Hall of Fame in 2009, and in 2012 she was inducted into the San Diego Hall of Champions Breitbard Hall of Fame.
Kelly Rulon, Water Polo (2003, 2005-07)
From the position of driver/attacker, Kelly Rulon helped lead UCLA to four NCAA team championships (2003, 2005, 2006, 2007). While competing internationally for the USA, she was a member of the gold medal-winning team at the 2012 Olympic Games and the bronze medal-winning team at the 2004 Olympics.
During her UCLA career, she was the program's all-time leading scorer with 237 goals, and her single-season mark of 70 goals, set in 2005, 2006 and 2007, is No. 3 in school history. Rulon's Bruin teams had an impressive overall won-loss record of 113-10.
As a UCLA senior in 2007, Rulon earned the Peter J. Cutino Award, bestowed upon the top female and top male collegiate water polo player each year. She was also awarded the Association of Collegiate Water Polo Coaches (ACWPC) Player of the Year honor. Rulon helped lead UCLA to the school's record-setting 100th NCAA team title in 2007, being named the tournament's Most Valuable Player for the second consecutive year after the team's 5-4 win over Stanford.
In 2006 as a junior, Rulon earned ACWPC Player of the Year honors after a 70-goal season. She was named the NCAA Tournament's Most Valuable Player after the Bruins defeated cross-town rival USC, 9-8, in the title match to win the program's fourth NCAA championship.
As a sophomore in 2005, she earned ACWPC first-team All-America honors and was the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) co-Player of the Year. An All-NCAA Tournament first- team selection, Rulon scored three goals in UCLA's 7-6 semifinal victory over Hawaii, and, in the championship match, the Bruins defeated Stanford, 3-2, to cap a perfect 33-0 season.
Rulon redshirted in 2004 to play on the U.S. team at the Olympic Games in Athens, where she scored four goals, including the game-winner against Hungary in the tournament opener, and helped lead the U.S. to the bronze medal.
A true freshman in 2003, she earned ACWPC third-team All-America honors and NCAA All-Tournament second-team accolades. In the NCAA Championship match against Stanford, the Bruins fell behind 2-0 at halftime but scored four-straight goals, including one by Rulon, to defeat the Cardinal, 4-3, to win the school's sixth national title and second NCAA crown.
Following her UCLA career, Rulon traveled overseas to play professionally in Italy. She played for Dravolina Nervi in 2008-2009 and was named Foreign Player of the Season in 2008. Rulon played for Roma Pallanuoto in 2007-2008 winning the Len Cup, a European water polo club competition.
In 2012, she scored four goals at the 2012 FINA World League Super Final and then recorded four goals at the Olympics to help lead the USA to the gold medal. In 2011, she posted six goals in helping her country to a gold medal and Olympic berth at the Pan American Games.
Previous Title IX 40 Profiles
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