June 24, 2014
MADISON, Wis. – Five members of the Wisconsin track and field teams will head west to Sacramento, California, to take part in the 2014 USA Outdoor Championships, Wednesday through Sunday at Hornet Stadium.
On the men’s side, Reed Connor will run the 1500 meters, Michael Lihrman will compete in the hammer throw and Zach Ziemek will take part in the decathlon. Kelsey Card will compete in both the women’s discus and shot put and Deanna Latham will partake in the heptathlon.
For Connor, this week will mark his final race in a Wisconsin uniform. The senior was a two-time All-American in track, including an All-America performance this year in the 5000 meters at the NCAA indoor championships. Connor helped UW win three Big Ten track titles, four Big Ten cross country titles and the 2011 NCAA cross country championship.
The Houston native will run in the 1500 first round on Thursday at 8:30 p.m. (CT). If he advances to the final, he will run at 4:14 p.m. on Saturday. Connor has a season-best time of 3 minutes, 40.43 seconds, which he set at American Milers Club meet on June 13.
Lihrman is coming off a third-place finish in the hammer throw at the NCAA outdoor championships after breaking his own Big Ten record with a heave of 233 feet, 9 inches. This week marks the second time that Lihrman will compete at the USA oudoor meet, as he placed 12th last year with a then-school record of 207-11.
Heading into this weekend, Lihrman has finished no lower than third in a competition and has nine event wins under his belt. He will wrap up a fantastic 2014 season on Thursday at 5 p.m.
The 2013 and 2014 Big Ten decathlon champion, Ziemek enters the USA Championships with the third-best qualifying score, his Wisconsin school record of 7,981 points set at the 2014 NCAA Outdoor Championships. A three-time first-team All-American in the multi-events, this week marks the first time that Ziemek will compete at the USA championships.
The decathlon begins on Thursday at 12:30 p.m. with the 100 meters. The second day of the decathlon starts with the 110 hurdles at 1:45 p.m. on Friday.
Card redshirted both the indoor and outdoor seasons, but that didn’t stop the junior from setting some impressive marks. A 2014 USA Indoor Championships qualifier in the shot put, Card’s season-best discus mark of 193-4 at the Wisconsin Open on May 10 would have not only been a Wisconsin school record, but a Big Ten record as well if she was competing attached.
Her best shot put performance came indoors, as she had a heave of 57-0 at the Red & White Open to qualify for the USA championships.
Qualifying for the women’s shot put takes place at noon on Wednesday at the California State Capital, while the final of the event starts at 6:30 p.m. The women’s discus final takes place on Sunday at 1:45 p.m.
Latham also redshirted during the outdoor season but had a fantastic indoor campaign for Wisconsin. She set the school record in the 60 hurdles (8.33), won the Badgers’ fifth-straight Big Ten pentathlon title and earned All-America honors at the NCAA indoor meet.
During the outdoor season, Latham set a personal-best heptathlon score of 5,745 points at the Bulldog Heptathlon to finish second behind eventual NCAA champion Kendell Williams of Georgia. That score would have ranked third on the Badgers’ all-time list if Latham was competing attached.
The heptathlon begins on Friday at 2:15 p.m. with the 100 hurdles, while Saturday’s action starts with the long jump at 12:30 p.m.