All-Americans Ross and Caldwell Pace Lobos at NCAA Championships
March 9, 2013
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — New Mexico head coach Joe Franklin knew his Lobos were capable of All-American performances.
Two of his athletes made sure he got them.
University of New Mexico track and field athlete Floyd Ross leaped to All-American status Saturday with his eighth-place performance in the men's triple jump at the 2013 NCAA Division I Men's and Women's Indoor Track and Field Championships.
Ross joins teammate Luke Caldwell in earning All-American honors after Caldwell took took eighth in the men's 5,000-meter run on Friday. It is the fifth straight year the Lobos registered multiple All-American selections at the NCAA Indoor Championships.
Ross, a senior from Memphis, Tenn., launched a 52-foot mark in the triple jump that placed third in his heat during the preliminary round. That mark, his second-longest this season, remained his best distance through the finals.
He placed eighth overall, behind winner Bryce Lamb of Texas Tech (55-7 ¾). Florida's Omar Craddock (55-1 ½) and Arkansas' Tarik Batchelor (53-11 ¼) rounded out the medalists.
Ross earned one team point for New Mexico and is slated to earn First-Team All-America honors from the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association for the second-straight year.
He finished eighth at the 2012 NCAA Indoor Championships with a 51-10 ½ mark.
Caldwell was the other Lobo to gain All-American status at Randal Tyson Track Center over the weekend. The Betchworth, England, product raced to a 13-minute, 46.44-second time in the men's 5K on Friday, earning one team point for the Lobos in his fifth lifetime 5K.
Together, Ross and Caldwell two combined points placed New Mexico 49th. The two points are the fewest since the men scored 1/3 point in 2006 to tie for 65th place.
Nonetheless, New Mexico has scored at the NCAA Indoor Championships for the last five years, just one year short of the program record (1975-80). Last year, New Mexico tied for 15th with 11 team points, including 10 from defending NCAA long jump champion Kendall Spencer.
Spencer made a return trip this year, but did not place in the men's long jump. He fouled each of his three attempts and did not register a mark, the first time that has happened to a New Mexico athlete since 2006, when Derek Mackel did the same in the pole vault.
On the women's side, Josephine Moultrie put together a valiant effort in the women's 3000, finishing 10th with a 9:14.84 clocking.
The senior from Glasgow, Scotland, was in the top five throughout most of the race, including with 600 meters remaining. She eventually fell behind in the last few laps, finishing 10th overall. She is in position to earn Second-Team All-American status from the USTFCCCA for the second consecutive year.
Moultrie did finish less than 10 seconds off her personal record of 9:06.35, set in February at the UW Invitational in Seattle. Moultrie, the first woman in UNM history to compete at the national championships in the 3000, was competing in just her second 3K in three years.
Final All-American selections will be announced by Monday. Ross and Caldwell are all but guaranteed First-Team honors, while Moultrie should earn Second-Team honors.
The Lobos have concluded the indoor season and will return to action in two weeks with their outdoor-season opener, the UTEP Springtime Invitational on March 23 in El Paso, Texas.