12 - The Michigan Daily - Monday, August 1, 2005
Woods wins gold for Canada at
By Ian Robinson
Daily Sports Writer
WINDSOR, Ontario - With 200 meters remaining
in the "Miracle Mile' Thursday night at the Pan-Ameri-
can Junior Athletics Championship, Michigan sophomore
Michael Woods took the lead.
Woods established a new Canadian junior record in the
mile with a second-place time of 3:57.48, his first sub-4:00
mile. But Woods could not hold on to the lead and came
in second behind American Adam Goucher in the event,
named in honor of the legendary 1954 race where two run-
ners ran sub-4:00 miles for the first time in the same race.
"Coming down the stretch, all I wanted to do was break
the record," Woods said. "When I crossed and saw the time
I just wanted to scream."
Woods broke the previous record of 3:58.08 - which
Mark Olsen set in 1983 - by .60 seconds.
Woods continued his strong performance on Sunday
afternoon. He won the gold medal and ran a new meet
record time of 3:45.72 in the 1500-meter run - beating
the old record by .08 seconds, which had been set in 1995
by Brazil's Marco de Silva.
"Being the captain of the Canadian team, I really felt I
needed to bring home the gold for the team," Woods said.
Woods and Michigan coach Ron Warhurst knew that
no one could match Woods's finishing speed and strat-
"I told him that there was no point in trying to push the
pace," Warhurst said. "I didn't think anybody could out-
kick him with 200 meters to go."
Woods followed the plan exactly and passed teammate
Braden Novakowski with more than 200 meters remain-
ing and created a three-second margin between himself
and his Canadian teammate. As Woods approached the
line, he held up a number one with his finger and blew. a
kiss to the crowd before pumping his fist in victory as he
crossed the line.
When asked where his performance this weekend ranks
in his lifetime achievements, Woods believes it is the pin-
nacle of his career, so far.
"It's definitely at the top," Woods said.
Woods was just one of four Michigan track and field
athletes to represent Canada at the meet, which was held
at the brand-new Windsor Stadium. Michigan athletes
captured two of Canada's three gold medals and estab-
lished two record times.
The other Michigan gold medalist was sophomore Aly-
son Kohlmeier, who ran away with the title in the 3,000
meter run and captured the Canadian squad's first gold
medal of the championships. Her winning time of 9:25.09
was more than 11 seconds ahead of the second-place run-
ner and defending champion from the 2003 Pan-Am Junior
Games, Ines Melchor of Peru.
After staying with the field through one mile, the Sarni
Ontario native took the opportunity to move to the front o
the race, and she never looked back.
"I saw that the time was a little slow from what I am
used to, so I went for it," Kohlmeier said. "If I was going
to make a move, it couldn't be just moving to the front. It
had to be gapping the field."
Kohlmeier secured a lead of 10 seconds within the first
1000 meters of the race.
When the race completed, the crowd of 3,200 gave
Kohlmeier a standing ovation as she draped a Canadian
flag on her back and took a celebration lap with her team-
mate Mandy McBean, who finished third.
"It's great for our program, but more importantly it's
great for her and her country," Michigan cross-country
coach Mike McGuire said.
Michigan sophomores Lisa Canty and Nicole Edwards
also competed in the Pan-Am Junior Games.
Both registered disappointing performances according
to McGuire. Edwards recorded a fifth-place finish in the
1,500-meter run and Canty finished seventh in the 3,000-
meter run McGuire attributed these poor performances
to the long season taking its toll on the athletes, who had
been training since the beginning of the cross-country
season last August.
All of the Wolverines plan on a taking a couple of weeks
off before they start training for their cross-country season
with Michigan this fall.
Michigan sophomore Michael Woods established a new Canadian junior record in the
mile with a time of 3:57.48,the first sub-4:00 mile of his career.