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Husky Track Teams Cap Regular Season
Release: 06/21/1999
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May 11, 1999

This Week: One Washington athlete begins conference championship competition this weekend while the remainder of the team has a final tune-up at home before the Pac-10 meet. The Husky track & field teams compete in the Seattle Pacific Invitational on Saturday, May 15 at Husky Stadium. That marks the final regular-season action for the Huskies with the Pac-10 championships (May 21-22) and NCAA championships (June 2-5) looming. Junior Jacob Predmore helps kick off the Pac-10 Conference track & field meet that begins with the multi-event championships on Friday and Saturday, May 14-15 in Tempe, Ariz. No UW women are scheduled to compete in the heptathlon. The entire UW team competes the following weekend, Friday and Saturday, May 21-22 at Arizona State's Sun Angel Stadium.

The Schedule:
Sat., May  15 - UW Track & Field at Seattle Pacific Invitational 
9:00 a.m.      Husky Stadium;  Seattle, Wash. 

Fri.-Sat, May 14-15 - Pacific-10 Conference Multi-Event Championships Sun Angel Stadium; Tempe, Ariz. Fri.-3:30 pm PST (4:30 pm MST) Sat.-2:30 pm PST (3:30 pm MST)

SPU Invitational: Athletes from throughout the Northwest converge on Husky Stadium for the annual Seattle Pacific Invitational. The meet begins with the women's hammer throw at 9 a.m. The women's 5,000-meter race is the first event on the track, scheduled for 11:30 a.m. The final event on the slate is the men's 4 x 400 relay at 3:15 p.m.

Pac-10 Multi-Events: The multi-event championships (decathlon/heptathlon) take place this weekend, preceding the rest of the Pac-10 track & field championships by a week. No UW athletes will compete in the heptathlon while Husky junior Jacob Predmore makes his Pac-10 meet decathlon debut. Predmore ranks second among Pac-10 competitors after amassing a 7,213-point total on April 1-2 in his collegiate decathlon debut. Last year, Washington's Mike Macpherson (6,727) placed sixth and E.J. Iddings (6,572) was seventh at the conference meet. Those two decathletes are red-shirting this season. California's Bevan Hart enters the meet with the best qualifying total of 7,404 points. Hart, who placed third last season (7,463), is the only top-six Pac-10 finisher from 1998 competing this year.

Proud Pac-10 Tradition: The Pac-10 has produced some of the world's most outstanding decathletes, including Bob Mathias (Stanford) who captured Olympic gold in both 1948 and 1952. Another former conference competitor, Rafter Johnson (UCLA) won the 1960 Olympic gold medal. Washington's Mike Ramos won the 1986 NCAA decathlon championship along with three Pac-10 titles (1983, 1984, 1986). Ramos established a still-standing NCAA decathlon record of 8,322 points at the 1986 Pac-10 championships.

Jacob Predmore: Junior Jacob Predmore (Duvall, Wash./Cedarcrest HS) makes his Pac-10 championships debut this weekend. The conference meet marks only the second decathlon appearance for the former long jump and hurdle specialist who sat out last season to begin training for the treacherous 10-event competition. Predmore's inaugural decathlon was a resounding success as he posted the fifth-highest total in Husky history. His 7,.213-point performance on April 1-2 in Davis, Calif., reached the NCAA provisional qualifying standard. Predmore currently ranks second in the Pac-10 and 19th nationally. He is the Washington's best long jumper with a leap of 24-3 1/2 to his credit.

Decathlon Schedule & Jacob Predmore's Best Marks-7,213: (all times Pacific Standard):

Friday, May 14      Event          Predmore Best
3:30 p.m.           100 meters        11.51
4:15 p.m.           Long Jump         24-3 1/2
6:00 p.m.           Shot Put          42-4
7:30 p.m.           High Jump         6-5 1/2
9:00 p.m.           400 meters        50.79

Saturday, May 15 Event Predmore Best 2:30 p.m. 110m Hurdles 14.92 3:30 p.m. Discus 112-2 5:00 p.m. Pole Vault 13-11 7:30 p.m. Javelin 177-8 9:00 p.m. 1,500 meters 4:36.02

Dynamic Distance Duo: Washington features two of the finest women's distance runners in the nation. Both junior Anna Aoki and senior Deeja Youngquist have reached the NCAA automatic 10,000-meter qualifying standard. Youngquist owns the Pac-10's best time of 34:04.70, a mark that ranks No. 7 nationally. The defending conference 10K champion, Aoki has a time of 34:05.30 that ranks second in the Pac-10 and No. 8 nationally. The two UW runners also reached the NCAA provisional 3,000- and 5,000-meter standards. Aoki clocked times of 9:36.86 and 16:45.73 while Youngquist has times of 9:33.70 and 16:46.58. They both made their NCAA championship meet debuts last spring in Buffalo, N.Y. Aoki placed 17th in the 10,000 meters and Youngquist was 20th.

Speedy Sophomore: Sophomore Ja'Warren Hooker's quest to defend his NCAA Indoor 55-meter championship was sidetracked as he missed the majority of the 1999 indoor campaign with a stress fracture in his left shin. His 1998 triumph in the 55-meters was Washington's first NCAA track title since 1988. Hooker's attempt to defend his Drake Relays 100-meter crown was halted when his hamstring tightened during a preliminary heat. Hooker returned from the stress fracture to compete in April. He posted a team-best time of 10.46 in the 100 meters on April 10 in San Diego. Hooker posted a season-best time of 21.09 in the 200 meters on May 8 at Oregon. He is scheduled to compete in the 100 and 200 meters on Saturday at Husky Stadium. Hooker hopes to be healthy enough to defend his 1998 conference 100- and 200-meter titles. As a freshman, Hooker was named the 1998 Pacific-10 Conference male track and field Athlete of the Year. He became the first double-event winner in Husky history at the Pac-10 championship meet, winning the 100- and 200-meter titles. After opening the 1998 outdoor season with 21 consecutive sprint victories, Hooker was beaten for the first time in the finals of the NCAA championships in Buffalo, N.Y. where he finished third. Last year, Hooker established a new school record in the 100 meters with a time of 10.18, and boasts the fifth best 200-meter time in UW history with a mark of 20.70. He is the first Washington athlete to garner conference athlete of the year honors since 1976 when the award was introduced. Hooker played receiver on the Husky football team the last two seasons. As a freshman in 1997 he scored four touchdowns, including an 89-yard kickoff return at Arizona the first time he touched the ball as a collegian. Hooker appeared in eight games during 1998, catching nine passed for 78 yards before a shoulder injury ended his season. Hooker did not participate in 1999 spring football drills.

Big Ben: Washington junior Ben Lindsey was named the Pacific-10 Conference men's track & field athlete of the week on April 12. Lindsey boasts the nation's third-best discus performance this year, tops in the Pac-10, when he heaved the disc an NCAA automatic qualifying distance of 200-8 to win on April 10 at the San Diego State Quad Meet. That is just shy of his career-best mark as he registered a discus throw of 202-7 on March 28, 1998 in San Diego that is the third longest in Washington history. The school record of 214-7 was set by Borys Chambul in 1976. The three-time All-American improved upon a ninth-place NCAA discus effort his freshman year with a fifth-place performance (193-1) last spring. Also a standout shot putter, Lindsey was the 1998 Pac-10 runner-up and finished fifth (62-5 3/4) at the 1998 NCAA Indoor championships. He reached the NCAA provisional standard on April 17 with a put of 60-4 1/2. His shot put mark of 65-4 on May 2, 1998 at Husky Stadium was the second best effort in Husky history, trailing only the school record 65-11 set in 1979 by Steve Summers. Lindsey won the Washington state high school discus title three times and claimed two prep shot championships.

Coach Richburg: After 12 years as head women's track & field coach at Washington, Orin Richburg took on a new assignment last season. He was named head men's and women's track & field/cross country coach in July of 1998. Richburg converted the Washington women's track & field team into one of the best dual-meet squads in the nation. He has the most women's dual-meet victories in Washington history, more than doubling his closest rival. He led the Washington women to an impressive 68-22 dual-meet record since coming to the school. The UW women's team has ranked among the top-10 dual-meet teams in the nation every year during the 1990s. His 1988 UW squad finished 10th at the NCAA championship meet, the best national finish in the school's history. His Washington teams have produced 10 conference and two national individual champions. Last year, the Richburg-coached Huskies had an 8-1 women's dual-meet record and finished fourth at the Pac-10 meet The Husky men had a 7-2 dual-meet mark in 1998 and placed 23rd at the NCAA Championships, their best finish since 1985. Prior to coming to Washington, Richburg spent seven seasons at Kent State and three years as an assistant at Western Michigan. A fine athlete in his own right, Richburg earned All-America accolades as a sprinter at Kent State, finishing sixth in the 200-yard dash at the 1967 NCAA championships.

Huskies in the Pac-10 Rankings: The following individuals are Washington athletes who rank among the top-eight in their respective events on the weekly Pacific-10 Conference best list published May 10:


100 meters      Ja'Warren Hooker    6th 10.46
200 meters      Ja'Warren Hooker    7th 21.09
Steeplechase    Paul Harkins        8th 9:11.33
110m Hurdles    Ben Meyer           4th 14.24
4 x 100 Relay   Washington          4th 40.61
4 x 400 Relay   Washington          8th 3:14.17
Pole Vault      Matt Phillips       8th 16-11 1/2
Long Jump       Jacob Predmore      5th 24-3 1/2
Shot Put        Ben Lindsey         4th 60-4 1/2
Discus          Ben Lindsey         1st 200-8
Javelin         Justin  St. Clair   2nd 231-3 
                Rob Minnitti        4th 222-10
Decathlon       Jacob Predmore      2nd 7,213
10,000 meters   Deeja Youngquist    1st 34:04.70
                Anna Aoki           2nd 34:05.30
400m Hurdles    Keisha Griffis      3rd 58.05
4 x 100 Relay   Washington          8th 46.46
4 x 400 Relay   Washington          6th 3:41.92
Shot Put        Sesilia Thomas      5th 48-11 3/4
Discus          Cecilia Barnes      7th 167-0
Javelin         Heather Reichmann   3rd 146-11

Last Week (Pepsi Team Invitational): Junior Chris Withey established a new school record in the pole vault and the Washington men's and women's track & field teams each placed second during the Pepsi Team Invitational at Oregon's Hayward Field. Nebraska won both team titles while Washington edged Oregon both in the tri-meet and dual-meet scoring. The Huskies amassed six NCAA provisional qualifying marks, led by Withey's record-breaking vault of 11-feet, 7 3/4-inches, which bested Withey's own previous school record by two inches. Junior Ben Lindsey won the men's discus (189-0) and shot put (58-1 3/4). The Huskies posted five victories in the throwing events. Also placing first were senior Seselia Thomas in the shot put (48-9), freshman Cecilia Barnes in the discus (157-1) and freshman Justin St. Clair in the javelin (223-3). Washington running-event victors included sophomore Chelsie Pentz in the 100 meters (12.21), senior Keisha Griffis in the 400-meter hurdles (5831), junior Ben Meyer in the 110-meter hurdles (14.38) and senior Erik Mickelson in the 800 meters (1:51.59).

NCAA Championship Qualifying Procedures: Marks which reach automatic standards guarantee berths to the 1999 NCAA Championship Meet, June 2-5 in Boise, Idaho. If there are not enough automatic qualifiers to fill out the fields, individuals with the next best marks receive NCAA bids, provided they reached the provisional standard.

Husky Qualifiers: Ten Washington athletes have combined to record 15 NCAA qualifying performances, including three automatic qualifying marks. Senior Deeja Youngquist registered the second-fastest 10,000-meter time in school history (34:04.70) on March 28 at Stanford to earn her second straight NCAA championships berth. She will be joined in the NCAA race by junior Anna Aoki (34:05.30) who is the defending Pac-10 champion in the 10,000-meter event. Youngquist (9:33.70 / 16:46.58) and Aoki (9:36.86 / 16:45.73) have also reached the NCAA provisional standards in the 3,000- and 5,000-meter events. Junior Ben Lindsey, a two-time discus All-American, ensured his third straight NCAA appearance with an automatic discus mark of 200-8. He is also a provisional shot put qualifier (60-4 1/2). Senior Keisha Griffis has an NCAA provisional time of 58.05 that should earn her third straight NCAA 400-meter hurdle berth.

1998 NCAA Recap: pionships in Buffalo, N.Y. Six Huskies claimed All-America awards: Aretha Hill in the women's discus (2nd, 192-5), Ja'Warren Hooker in the men's 100 meters (3rd, 10.25), Ben Lindsey in the men's discus (5th, 193-1), Danelle Kabush in the women's 1,500 meters (9th, 4:22.85), Keisha Griffis in the women's 400-meter hurdles (9th, 59.26) and Geoff Perry in the men's 1,500 meters (3:48.57). Four of those All-Americans; Hooker, Lindsey, Griffis and Perry, return to compete for the 1999 Washington track & field squad.

Washington's 1999 NCAA Outdoor Championship Qualifiers

Automatic Qualifiers (3) Event (s)      Mark     NCAA Rank   Year  Hometown (High School/JC)
Women (2):   
Anna Aoki               10,000 meters   34:05.30      8th     Jr.  Vancouver, Wash. (Fort Vancouver HS)
Deeja Youngquist        10,000 meters   34:04.70      7th     Sr.  Enumclaw, Wash. (Enumclaw HS)

Men (1) Ben Lindsey Discus 200-8 3rd Jr. Lynnwood, Wash. (Lynnwood HS)

Provisional Qualifiers (12) Event (s) Mark NCAA Rank Year Hometown (High School/JC) Women (8) Anna Aoki 3,000 meters 9:36.86 50th Jr. Vancouver, Wash. (Fort Vancouver HS) 5,000 meters 16:45.73 49th Cecilia Barnes Discus 167-0 27th Fr. Fresno, Calif. (Clovis West) Keisha Griffis 400m Hurdles 58.05 13th Sr. Los Angeles, Calif. (Washington HS) Kara Syrdal 5,000 meters 16:47.31 55th So. Shoreline, Wash. (Shorecrest HS) Chris Withey Pole Vault 11-7 3/4 47th Jr. Spokane, Wash. (Shadle Park HS) Deeja Youngquist 3,000 meters 9:33.70 41st Sr. Enumclaw, Wash. (Enumclaw HS) 5,000 meters 16:46.58 51st

Men (4) Ben Lindsey Shot Put 60-4 1/2 16th Jr. Lynnwood, Wash. (Lynnwood HS) Rob Minnitti Javelin 222-10 22nd Fr. Port Orchard, Wash. (South Kitsap HS) Jacob Predmore Decathlon 7,213 19th Jr. Duvall, Wash. (Cedarcrest HS) Justin St. Clair Javelin 231-3 8th So. Tacoma, Wash. (Franklin Pierce HS)

Next Week:
Fri.-Sat., May 21-22 - UW Track & Field at Pac-10 Championships; Tempe, Ariz.

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