May 23, 2013
|NCAA West Preliminary Championships
May 23-25 at Texas's Mike A. Meyers Stadium
Championship Info Page
AUSTIN, Texas - A hot, humid night was expected and delivered tonight on the first day of the NCAA West Preliminary Championships, but there was no sign of slowing from junior Megan Goethals, as she rolled through 25 laps to take third in the 10,000-meters and become the first Husky through to the NCAA finals in two weeks.
The 10,000-meters capped off a long day, which saw four other Husky women advance through first round competition into quarterfinals to be held here in Mike A. Meyers Stadium tomorrow or Saturday. Goethals, the Pac-12 Champion at 5,000-meters, moved back up to the 10k for the first time since setting the school record in the event at the Stanford Invitational back in March.
Two of the fastest 10k runners in NCAA history, Betsy Saina of Iowa State and Aliphine Tuliamuk-Bolton of Wichita State pushed the pace and made a slight break, but Goethals led the second pack and wouldn't lose much ground, looking relaxed as she wrapped her third-place effort in 34:58.86. Junior Lindsay Flanagan was in the top-12 mix for the first half of the race, but was more affected by the heat and slipped back to finish 22nd.
"The goal today was just to qualify. Twelfth-place is first-place. The race went out super slow, but that doesn't really matter, place is all that matters, not time at (Prelims)," said Goethals. "I don't mind the heat; I'm from the Midwest and this is what our weather is like at the end of track season. I'm really excited to come back and run the 5k on Saturday night and I'll have two days now to recover and rest up."
The NCAA West Prelims take initial fields of 48 qualifiers in every event from the western half of the country, and cut each one down to a final 12 that will move on to Hayward Field in Eugene from June 5-8 for the NCAA semis and finals. The same process takes place in Greensboro, N.C. for the East Prelims, making for fields of 24 at Oregon.
The first track event of the week was the women's 400-meter hurdles, and it couldn't have gone much better for the duo of Kayla Stueckle and Gianna Woodruff. Stueckle, fifth at Pac-12s two weeks ago, had enjoyed a very solid and consistent season thus far but had yet to set a PR. Her best coming in this season was 59.09, but today running in lane eight, Stueckle completely bypassed the 58-second range and ran a new career-best of 57.90 to take second in her heat and automatically move to the quarterfinals. That was a PR by 0.62 seconds and moves Stueckle up to No. 4 all-time at Washington.
"It's overcast so it's not radiating heat out there. There was a lot less wind than last year, I think that gave me a hard time with my rhythm last year, but today I felt so smooth and I got out there early and was able to hold onto it because the wind wasn't a factor," said Stueckle after her PR. "Coming off a season where you're building and building and haven't quite hit where you want to, and then to come here on day one and break it open feels great."
Woodruff, running in her first NCAA Prelims, was in the sixth and final heat. Out of the middle of the track, the Los Angeles native got out well and never skipped a beat, taking second in 58.95 seconds, her first time breaking the 59-second mark. She's the seventh Husky ever under that benchmark. Stueckle and Woodruff will run the quarterfinals tomorrow evening looking to reach Eugene.
"The track was really fast, I felt fast," said Woodruff. "The heat wasn't bad and the humidity probably helped me. All the hard work is paying off now so it feels good."
The first of two rounds of the women's 1,500-meters went off today. Last year, Katie Flood advanced through two rounds here in Austin before going on to win the NCAA title in Iowa. Today on the women's side, sophomore Eleanor Fulton made her first NCAA Prelims appearance and looked strong advancing into the quarterfinals with a season-best time of 4:22.77, which was fourth in her heat. She'll be back racing on Saturday.
Well after the sun set, the first rounds of the 800-meters went off, with sophomore Baylee Mires in the fourth of six heats. Mires was patient as her heat remained bunched up and she sat on the rail until the final turn, when things opened up and Mires pushed ahead to place second overall in 2:08.61. Her quarterfinal race will be tomorrow evening.
One of Washington's top distance runners over the last five years, Joey Bywater, saw his Husky career come to a close today, as he would not move on in the 1,500-meters, placing 10th in his heat in 3:56.03. Bywater was a two-time NCAA cross country participant, a Second Team All-American and school record-holder in the DMR, and ranks fifth on the Husky mile top-10 list.
Senior James Alaka and freshman Quadelle Satterwhite took their shots in the 100-meter dash, but both had tough races, with Alaka finishing fifth in his heat in 10.62 seconds and Satterwhite eighth in his in 10.68. Neither time would be enough to move on.
On the men's side of the 800-meters, Michael Miller and Derrick Daigre ran in the first two heats, but neither were able to make a move on the lead and advance. Miller was eighth in the first heat in 1:53.40, and Daigre made a push on the outside to finish in 1:50.66 but that was just good for seventh in his heat and 32nd out of the 48 competitors.
Senior Dan Sanders made a last dash in the 400-meter hurdles this evening. Coming off a sixth-place Pac-12 finish and a PR, Sanders made it to Prelims for the first time. However he had been battling a hamstring issue suffered in the Pac-12 relay final. The time off showed a bit, as he ran 53.60 to place 41st overall, but right about where he was seeded coming in. Sanders will compete again in the 4x400-meters on Saturday.
The focus for the Huskies in the field this evening was on junior A.J. Maricich, competing in the high jump. Maricich had set his PR at this meet and stadium last year, going 7-2 ½, but after clearances at 6-7 ½ and 6-9 ½, he was unable to make the bar at 6-11 ½.
The first competitor of the afternoon was junior discus thrower Robert Henderson, who grabbed the last qualifying spot. Unfortunately today Henderson couldn't find a groove, as he fouled his three attempts.
Washington Track & Field
NCAA West Preliminary Championships
May 23, 2013 - Austin, Texas
Mike A. Myers Stadium
Day 1 of 3
100m (Heat 4 of 6):
5. James Alaka, 10.62 (38th overall; does not advance); (Heat 5 of 6): 8. Quadelle Satterwhite, 10.68 (46th overall; does not advance); 800m (Heat 1 of 6): 8. Michael Miller, 1:53.40 (44th overall; does not advance); (Heat 2 of 6): 7. Derrick Daigre, 1:50.66 (32nd overall; does not advance); 1,500m (Heat 1 of 4): 10. Joey Bywater, 3:56.03 (38th overall; does not advance); 400m Hurdles (Heat 6 of 6): 7. Dan Sanders, 53.60 (41st overall; does not advance); High Jump: 25. A.J. Maricich 6-9 ½ (does not advance); Discus: -- Robert Henderson, Foul (does not advance).
800m (Heat 4 of 6): 2. Baylee Mires, 2:08.61 (Advances to Quarterfinals); 1,500m (Heat 3 of 4): 4. Eleanor Fulton, 4:22.77 (Advances to Quarterfinals); 10,000m: 3. Megan Goethals, 34:58.86 (Advances to Eugene); 22. Lindsay Flanagan, 36:06.77 (does not advance); 400m Hurdles (Heat 3 of 6): 2. Kayla Stueckle, 57.90 (Advances to Quarterfinals; (Heat 6 of 6): 2. Gianna Woodruff, 58.95 (Advances to Quarterfinals).
Advances to Eugene
Megan Goethals, 10,000m