Last Friday and Saturday, both Crousen's women's and men's teams flogged the competition at the Hardin-Simmons Invitational. The War Hawk women out-distanced second place HSU, 297 to 178, while on the men's side, McMurry held a 299-89 margin over runner-up Sul Ross State. The War Hawk women took first place in 10 of the 20 events contested. McM's men garnered top honors in eight of 19 events.
After the weekend dust had settled, McMurry had a total of 29 individuals or relay teams ranked in the top-20 for NCAA III. NCAA III - unlike Division I & II - utilizes a performance list, as opposed to pre-determined "automatic" and "provisional" standards. The top 20 male and top 22 female individuals - as well as top 16 relay teams - in each event will be invited to the NCAA III outdoor championships in Claremont, Calif., in May.
After last week's dominating effort at Hardin-Simmons, McMurry has four national leaders in the early going, as well.
On the women's performance list, sophomore Shanita Coleman leads the nation in the long jump (19' 2"), fifth in the triple jump (36' 2 ") and is 17th in the 200 meters (22.00). Shanita Coleman is also a part of the War Hawks' second-ranked 4x100 relay team (47.71).
Freshman Tiana Alexander - an indoor All-America in the long jump just three weeks ago - is slotted behind Coleman in fifth (18' 5 ").
The War Hawk women actually have two 4x100 relay teams qualified. The other McM quartet (comprised of Carla Burton, Shanita Coleman, LaKendra Matthews and Kristen Johnson) is currently 11th (49.37). Burton, Shanita Coleman, Alexander and Kendra Coleman make up the other relay group.
Matthews - another freshman - is just ahead of Coleman in the triple jump, sitting in fourth (36' 5"). Alexander is also on the triple jump chart in 20th (35' 2").
In the women's 400 meters, McM's freshman tandem of Laura Oviedo (58.54) and Ana Villarreal (59.15) rank seventh and 15th, respectively.
In the men's performance rankings, McMurry has three sprinters among the top 10 in the 100 meters. Kenneth Turner (10.79) and Gavan Bass (10.80) are third and fourth, respectively. Josh Zu-Bolton (10.92) is currently eighth.
Trevon Odom sits in the No. 9 spot in the 200 meters (22.00).
Senior Kevin Cunningham leads the nation in the 400-meter hurdles. The defending national champ posted a time of 52.74 seconds.
The War Hawk men also have a pair of 4x100 relays teams qualified. McMurry's nation-leading quartet of John Keith, Odom, Bass and Turner blazed to a clocking of 41.20. McM has the 13th best effort (42.71), as well, with Keith, Zu-Bolton, William Cooper and Everette Miller handling the baton.
In the men's high jump, freshman Jajuan Austin (6' 7") is fourth and senior Stryker Pena (6' 6") at ninth.
A pair of War Hawks appear in the pole vault rankings. Marcus Nabors (14' 11") and Grayson Morrow (14' 9") are 12th and 15th.
Bass is fifth in the long jump (23' 0 ") and teammate Miller (22' 9 ") at the No. 8 spot. Thompson (21' 8") ranks 16th.
Three McMurry freshman jumpers also dot the men's triple jump rankings. Dillon Wilkins (45' 5 ") is rated eighth after his efforts last weekend. Miller (45' 3 ") checks in at No. 10, followed by Chris Ogle (44' 11 ") in 13th.
Sophomore Paul Davis finally breeched the 60-foot barrier in the shot put, uncorking a 60' 6 " effort at to win the HSU meet. In that same meet, Davis broke McMurry's 14-year-old school discus record with a heave of 170' 1" (surpassing John Rhiddlehoover's mark of 169' 9 ' in 1999).