WMU News

Broncos to compete at Junior Nationals

June 14, 2001

KALAMAZOO -- Following in the footsteps of past and present Olympians, four members of the Western Michigan University men's and women's track and field teams will compete Saturday and Sunday, June 16-17, at the 2001 U.S. Junior National Championships at Virginia Commonwealth University.

The junior nationals serve as the first stages of identifying the top caliber athletes in the United States for selection to national teams and international competitions. Athletes range in ages between 14-19.

Bronco freshmen who will be competing in Richmond are Clark Wilson of Mount Prospect, Ill., in the discus; Tom Maczik of Reese, Mich., in shot put and discus; Tom Torchia of Pittsburgh in the javelin and Kendrah Lockett of Grand Rapids, Mich., in the 400.

Wilson, 19, recently competed at the NCAA Outdoor Championships in the discus, finishing 18th overall. He won the discus championship at the Mid-American Conference Championships and broke a 16-year-old school record in the event with a toss of 189'-10" (57.86 meters) at Notre Dame on April 7.

Maczik (MOC-zik), 19, redshirted during the indoor and outdoor seasons. He qualified for the junior nationals by throwing 61'-8.25" in the shot and 185'-7" in the discus at his high school regional meet in 2000.

Torchia (TOR-sha), 19, met the qualifying standard in the javelin with two weeks left in the season, producing a mark of 185'-5" (56.52m) at the Billy Hayes Invitational on May 12.

"This is an opportunity for our guys to compete at the highest level against athletes in their own age group. They've been competing against upperclassmen all year and finally have an even playing field age wise," said throws coach Mike Turk.

Lockett ran a qualifying time of 56.13 on her 19th birthday, May 18, in the MAC preliminaries WMU's fastest time of the season. Lockett walked on to the team last fall and helped the Broncos to four relay victories during the outdoor campaign.

"She's still learning the sport but is beginning to run within herself," said sprints coach Ray Williams. "This is a great experience for someone who has never competed at this level before."

For more information, visit the Broncos on the Web at <www.wmubroncos.com>.

Media contact: Daniel Jankowski, 616 387-4138, daniel.jankowski@wmich.edu

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