Naperville, Ill. – Just a day after Josh Owens (Sr., Brooklyn Park, Minn.) became the first Gustie athlete to earn All-America accolades in the pole vault at the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships, Cameron Clause (Jr., Mankato, Minn.) followed suit with a All-America showing of his own. Clause placed fifth heptathlon competition after tallying 4912 points, earning a spot on the All-America team by way of a finish inside the top eight. The 2013 NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships were held over the weekend at North Central College in Naperville, Ill.
“It was a make or break day for Cameron and he rose to the occasion,” said head coach Dale Bahr. “After the 60-meter hurdles, Cameron knew that he had to get going. He set a personal record to win the pole vault competition then followed that up with a great race in the 1,000. He knew what needed to be done in the final race and he went after it.”
Saturday’s heptathlon competition, like coach Bahr mentioned, began with the 60-meter hurdles. After placing 11th in the race, Clause dropped down to 12th overall. Following the 60-meter hurdles came Clause’s strongest event – the pole vault. The junior cleared the bar at a career-best 15-feet 5-inches, winning the segment by eight inches over second place performer from UW-Stout.
He went into the final event, the 1,000-meter run, ranked seventh. The local Mankato, Minn. product knew that a solid race in the 1,000 would keep him inside the top eight and in a position to take home All-America honors. Clause stayed the course, crossing the finish line in 2:44.46 to place second.
When dust settled at the Al B. Carius Track, Clause had registered 2,382 points to finish the heptathlon in fifth place. Ranking 11th coming into the weekend, Clause jumped six spots from his standing after day one.
With Owens’s four points on Friday and Clause’s four points on Saturday, the Gustavus men’s indoor track and field team finished the weekend in 21st place in the team standing with eight points.
Clause is the first Gustavus athlete to earn All-America accolades in the heptathlon. His final count of 4,912 points bests his own school record of 4,781 set last weekend and the MIAC Indoor Championships.