UH's Kaufman places second in NCAA high jump
Amber Kaufman became the first University of Hawai‘i athlete to medal at the NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships yesterday, taking second in the high jump.
Kaufman was flawless through her first six high jumps, but failed to clear 6 foot 4 at the Randal Tyson Track Center in Fayetteville, Ark. Arizona senior Elizabeth Patterson missed five jumps on the way to 6-4 (1.93 meters), including her first two at 6-2 3/4 (1.90). But she cleared that height on her final try and went over 6-4 on her first to capture her second NCAA gold and tie her personal best.
Kaufman missed all three tries at 6-4, which would also have tied her personal best. They were her only three misses of the day as she cleared her first six heights on the first attempt.
“As much height as she had at nine three (1.93) and just not finish it off is tough,” said UH coach Carmyn James. “I’m so proud her, but to be that close, millimeters from winning the whole thing … she was teary-eyed. Hopefully this will fire her up for Outdoors.”
Only four jumpers got over 6 feet yesterday. Arizona freshman Brigetta Barrett and Nebraska senior Bullock Epley were eliminated at 6-1 1/4.
Patterson was second to Destinee Hooker at the NCAA Indoors and Outdoors last year and won the NCAA Outdoor title as a sophomore. Arizona has claimed a record eight women’s high jumping titles in the NCAA’s 30-year track history.
Kaufman was sixth Indoors and third Outdoors last year, and also earned All-America honors at the 2008 NCAA Outdoors with a fifth-place finish. The senior from San Jose, Calif., was also an AVCA honorable mention All-American in volleyball, helping the Rainbow Wahine reach the final four.
In the February issue of Volleyball Magazine, Kaufman and teammate Kanani Danielson were on the Asics/Volleyball Magazine first team, with Aneli Cubi-Otineru on second team. Kalani graduate Tamari Miyashiro, a Washington senior, is also on first team.
In Austin, Texas, yesterday, UH junior Stephanie De Lima took sixth on the 3-meter springboard at the NCAA Zone E diving championships to advance to next week’s NCAA finals. The WAC champion — on all three boards — finished with a total of 602.40 to earn the final spot by more than 35 points.
A day earlier, she was seventh on the 1-meter. Six divers advance on each board.
Sophomore teammate Daniella Nero finished eighth on the 1-meter and ninth at 3 meters. Freshman Hannah Bocksnick did not advance to the final round (top 18) on either board.
On the men’s side, Hawai‘i’s Douglas Cohen finished 11th in the 1-meter final yesterday and Thomas Rugg was 17th in the 3-meter final Thursday.
The final day of Zone E is today on the Platform.