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Washington Track Teams Prep for McDonald's Scoring Invitational.
Release: 02/06/2001
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Feb. 6, 2001

SEATTLE-- The Husky men's and women's track teams will journey east to Moscow, Idaho for the McDonald's Team Scoring Invitational, Friday and Saturday, a battle which includes several Northwest schools.

The McDonald's meet will be the first two-day affair of the season for the Huskies and will feature Pac-10 rivals Oregon and Washington State along with Portland, Portland State, Idaho and Montana among others.

The two day meet is the first of two for the Washington squad in Moscow, and will bring even more competition than the UW team faced at Air Force with 11 schools competing.

"Last week was a good meet for us because it was very competitive across the board," head coach Orin Richburg said. "But, it should be a lot more competitive this week because of all the teams and athletes. The event schedule should be stronger from a team aspect."

"This weekend will be a good test for us in terms of realizing where we are," Richburg continued. "There are no excuses this weekend. We are on a big track. We have trained well and we have some competition behind us. This weekend will give us an indication of what kind of team we can be or should be in order to be competitive in the Pac-10 conference."

There are only two meets left for the Huskies, both in Moscow, before the indoor championship season begins at the Mountain Pacific Conference Championships, Feb. 23-24.

"We have three shots left before the NCAA Championships," Richburg said. "The next two weekends are very important for us. We are in short weeks because the meets are Friday and Saturday and Thursday is a travel day. We have three days a week to train for the championships and championships mean that you are ready to compete at a high level. That is what we are getting ready for."

Competition at the McDonald's Invitational will begin at 4 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. Saturday. Full results will be available daily on the University of Idaho website, www.its.uidaho.edu/athletics.

*Best in the U.S.?

Husky senior sprinter Ja'Warren Hooker was ranked eighth in the United States in the 400 meters for the year 2000 by Track & Field News. The publication listed the top ten athletes in the world and the U.S. for each event in its February edition.

*Keeping up with the Qualifiers

Hooker and sophomore Brad Walker are the only Huskies to reach qualifying marks for the NCAAs.

Hooker notched an automatic qualifying mark in the 55m, Jan. 20. His converted qualifying mark in the 60 meter dash ranks him second on the NCAA performance list. Hooker also reached the provisional mark in the 200m at the Air Force Classic, Feb. 3.

Walker reached the provisional mark in the pole vault at the Pole Vault Summit in Reno, Nev., Jan. 20. His mark ties him for eighth on the NCAA performance list.

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