Courtesy Westfield State Sports Information
GRINNELL, Iowa - Westfield State University senior Amanda Gricus saved her best for last as she earned All-America honors by placing second in the 20-pound weight throw at the NCAA Division III indoor track and field championships on March 9 at Grinnell College.
Gricus shattered her own school record of 58 feet, 8 inches with a sensational throw of 18.59 meters (61 feet even).
Her record-setting throw came on her third and final attempt in the preliminaries. She began the competition with a throw of 17.68 then fouled on her second attempt. She fouled on her first two attempts in the finals and ended with a toss of 17.38.
"Amanda did a fantastic job today," said Westfield head coach Sean O'Brien. "Everything just clicked for her on that throw of 61 feet."
Gricus made it to the NCAA final round in 2011 but she finished ninth, just missing All-America honors.
Wisconsin-Oshkosh's Alexia Child won the national title with a huge toss of 64-1 3/4. Brittany Frederick of Wisconsin-Eau Claire placed third (59-5 3/4) and Amina Avril of Williams College was fourth (58-8 1/2).
Westfield junior pole vaulter Tom Gauger, who qualified for nationals by clearing 5.01 meters (16-5 1/4) in last weekend's ECAC championships, missed all three of his attempts at his opening height of 4.66 meters and was eliminated early from the competition.
Josh Winder of North Central College won the pole vault national title by clearing 5.16 meters (16-11). MIT's Nathan Peterson placed fifth (16-3 1/4).