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NMJC Takes Fourth at NJCAA National Indoor Track Championships

NMJC Takes Fourth at NJCAA National Indoor Track Championships photo
(l to r): Monique Davis, Diedra Harrison, Gabby Rodriguez, Jennifer Renteria, Jodian Richards, Monica Fierro, Gus Newmeyer, Melesia Mafile'o, (kneeling): Trudeann Clarke

3/5/2007 3:38:16 p.m. - Hobbs, NM. The New Mexico Junior College women's indoor track and field team walked away with an impressive fourth place finish at the National Junior College Athletic Association's National Indoor Track Championship held this past weekend in Lubbock, Texas.

Out of 25 teams participating in the competition, NMJC walked away with a composite team score of 83 points, only 12 points away from third place and 36 points ahead of fifth place, due to 16 All-American finishes in ten individual categories.

First place finishes include: sophomores Monique Davis and Deidra Harrison, and freshmen Jodian Richards and Trudeann Clarke in the 4 x 400m relay; sophomore Gus Newmeyer and freshmen Silvia Barkechir, Clarke, and Richards in the distance medley relay; Richards in the 600m run; and Clarke in the 400m dash.

Second place finishes include Richards in the 800m run and sophomore Melesia Mafile'o in the pentathlon and high jump.

Mafile'o also placed third in the triple jump. Sophomore Gus Newmeyer finished third in the 1,000m run and sixth in the mile.

"When faced with a challenge, everyone has two choices: to turn the other way or to step up, and our girls stepped up! Everyone did their part and did all they could've done. The girls worked hard from the beginning of the season to the end, and it showed at nationals. We stayed strong, we didn't have any injuries, and everyone walked off of the track at the end of the competition," explains NMJC's Track and Field Coach Keith Blackwill. Blackwill attributes much of the athlete's good physical health to NMJC Athletic Trainer Richard Lloyd.

According to 13-time All-American Gus Newmeyer, "We handled ourselves well and professionally. It was nice to show that we have a good, quality track program at NMJC. We wanted to compete well for coach. He's invested a lot into us and taken good care of us here. We wanted to give something back to him and the college for all of the opportunities we've been afforded as athletes here."

"One of the biggest factors to our success this past weekend was the local support. Our president, vice president, registrar, and others all traveled to the event to rally behind us. It felt like a home meet for us," expressed Blackwill. "The object is for us to progress as a team, and we're progressing. We placed seventh at nationals last year, and this year we placed fourth. It says a lot for our region to produce two of the top four teams."

For more results of the 2007 NJCAA Indoor Track Championships, visit For more information on NMJC Track, contact NMJC coach Keith Blackwill at 575.492.2747.

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