Boise State senior Mattias Jons gave it all he had. The Bronco hammer thrower once again beat his own school record in the event at the NCAA National Outdoor Track & Field Championships today in Sacramento. Jons heaved the weight 233 feet, 11 inches. Through five rounds, that throw led the nation. On the sixth and final throw, defending national champion Spyridon Jullien of Virginia Tech let go a winner. His toss sailed to a distance of 237-2, a little over three feet beyond Jons' mark. Thus, for the second year in a row, the top two hammer throwers in the nation are Jullien and Jons, in that order.
Jons earned All-America honors for the third time in his distinguished Bronco career. He won the award in last year's hammer throw and also was All-America at this spring's Indoor Championships in the 35-pound weight throw.
Jons nearly helped Boise State accomplish two feats that no one in school history had ever done. First, he would have been the third straight national champion for Coach Mike Maynard's track team--Gabe Wallin won the last two national titles in javelin. Second, he would have joined wrestler Ben Cherrington as the first pair of Boise State national champions in the same year.
Both of those are still a possibility. Even though Jons fell just short, the Broncos are still hoping that javelin thrower Keron Francis can capture the national championship. Francis will go for the title Saturday morning at 11 Boise time.
Eleni Kafourou did not advance to the finals of the women's triple jump. She had a mark of 41-6 and then fouled on her final two attempts to improve upon that distance and thus finished 18th.
With one day remaining, Boise State is in a tie for 14th in the nation with the eight points that Jons earned for his second-place showing. Arkansas leads the competition with 28 points.