Dobbins and Comito named All-Americans at national meet

by Tiara Pajimola

Senior captain Carter Comito and sophomore Christina Dobbins earned All-American honors after traveling to Naperville, Ill. last Thursday to compete at the 2013 NCAA Division III Indoor Track & Field Championships. Both athletes placed in the top five places in their events.

Vertical jumps coach Bob Omlin and throws coach Joey VanHoomissen made the trip with the two athletes along with head coach Toby Schwarz. Schwarz spoke about how much of an accomplishment it is to make an appearance at this meet.

“We don’t have an indoor conference championship so it’s tough for us to qualify for nationals,” Schwarz said.

Both athletes were ranked nationally in the top ten coming into the meet. Comito was ranked third in shot put and Dobbins ranked tenth in the high jump. Comito set the school record in March of last year with a throw in shot of 55-11 1/4. He improved that mark this year with a throw just shy of 60 feet at 59-3 1/2. Comito earned his second All-American honor taking fifth place at this year’s indoor national meet with a throw of 56-8 1/2.

“I felt pretty good,” Comito said. “I didn’t place as high as I wanted so it wasn’t great but it wasn’t bad.”

Comito now has motivation and a new goal for the outdoor season.

“I didn’t do as well as I should have here,” Comito said. “It makes me want to be at outdoor nationals. I would love to throw over 60 feet and I can and I should.”

Comito’s performance and work ethic are some of the things Schwarz admires the most about the senior captain.

“He works hard, Schwarz said. “He does everything that guys need to do to get to this level and perform on this stage.”

Dobbins earned her first indoor All-American Honor tying for third place with a personal best of 5-6 1/2.

“This is her first time [at nationals],” Schwarz said. “She PR’d to get here and she deserved to get here.”

As a newcomer in the national meet, Dobbins was excited with the things she got to experience along the way.

“It was definitely an experience with the traveling and getting to see the facilities because they were really neat,” Dobbins said. “It was fun to see the athletes who got [to nationals] because everybody was there to compete.”

Taking her first All-American honor as a sophomore, Dobbins was content with her performance.

“I’m happy with it,” Dobbins said. “Going in, the starting height was a little higher than I usually come in at so I was nervous and I was competing against athletes at the top of D3. Once I was in there it all went away and I jumped a half an inch over my PR so it went well.”

With Dobbins’ latest achievements, Schwarz sees good things in the future.

“There are a lot of things she can accomplish over the next three years.” Schwarz said.

Dobbins still sees room for improvement not only for her next national meet but for the rest of the 2013 season.

“My goal is just to start being more consistent around my PR.” Dobbins said. “It definitely motivated me and now I know that this is something I can do.”

The Bucs track and field teams will compete Saturday, March 16 in the Dusty Lane Open at Spokane Falls Community College starting at 9 a.m.

Contact Tiara Pajimola at tpajimola16@my.whitworth.edu

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