The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Missouri Southern Sports

May 26, 2012

Green leads MSSU at national meet

PUEBLO, Colo. — Dustin Green unleashed his best throw of the season and placed fourth in the discus on Friday at the NCAA Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships.

Green, a junior from Conway Springs, Kan., threw 182 feet, 2 inches on his first attempt. Nick Jones of Abilene Christian won the event at 196-1.

“Dustin Green had an awesome day, PR’d (personal record) by almost eight feet,” Lions coach Tom Rutledge said. “He was ranked 11th coming into the meet and placed fourth.

“He had a solid day of throwing. He was third or fourth in the conference meet, and all those guys who beat him then, he beat them today. He rose to the occasion.”

The Lions almost had two throwers in the nine-man finals, but Nicklas Polizzi wound up tied for 10th at 167-11, just two inches shy of making the finals.

The Lions’ Clark Tanksley joined Green as an All-American by tying for seventh place in the high jump at 6-10 3/4. Edward Dudley of Lake Erie won the event at 7-4 1/2.

“He’s been to the indoor nationals twice,” Rutledge said. “It’s experience, and he nailed it today.”

Sprinter Jeff Fraley qualified seventh in the 200 meters at 21.15 seconds. Terrel Cotton of Lincoln has the fastest time at 20.48, and three more runners broke 21 seconds.

Senior Lisa Vengels, sixth after four events on the first day, wound up 10th in the heptathlon with 4,760. In the Friday events, Vengels was 10th in the 800 (2:32.27), 12th in the javelin (93-7) and 14th in the long jump (16-5 1/4).

“Lisa equaled or bettered her performance in every event over the last two days except the long jump,” Lions coach Patty Vavra said. “She was ranked 14th and finished 10th. I’m proud of her. Even though this is her senior year, this is the first time she has attempted the multi events in the outdoor season and competed in the national meet.”

Jasmin Hughes rank 24.20 — 0.03 seconds below her best — and was 14th in qualifying for the 200 meters.

“I’ve always felt any time you almost equal or improve on your best in the national championships, you’ve done your job,” Vavra said. “Jasmine was seeded 15th or 16th. I feel a lot better about her race today. It was much more like her, under control, a lot more relaxed through the finish of the race.”

The Lions’ Melanie Bower cleared the opening height of 11-9 3/4 in the pole vault but went out at the next height — 12-3 1/2 — and wound up in a tie for 10th place.

“She had one really good attempt at the second height but hit it with her hand,” Vavra said. “I’m proud of her, a freshman making it to nationals in indoor and outdoor seasons.”

Talbert places for PSU

Pittsburg State picked up its third All-America effort when John Talbert finished sixth in the discus at 178-4.

Larissa Richards, seeded No. 3, wound up 13th in the women’s discus. She fouled on her first two attempts, then threw 145-8 on her third attempt but was just over six feet short of qualifying for the finals.

The Gorillas’ Jalexis Peterson was 16th in the triple jump (38-7), and Kaley Temaat took 13th in the 800 meters at 2:15.66.

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Missouri Southern Sports