Jan. 6, 2010
NEW ORLEANS - The Husky women's track and field squad has its goals set high, with every NCAA competitor from 2009 returning this season, and those expectations were reflected in the indoor track preseason polls released this week by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) which pegged the Husky women eighth in the country.
The rankings are based off of returning national qualifiers from the previous year to approximate how the points would break down if all the returners held to form. Washington is the second-highest-ranked Pac-10 squad behind No. 2 Oregon. It would be a big jump up for the team after last year's 35th-place finish, but every scorer returns and a 10 point swing can make a huge difference in the smaller indoor meet.
Earning preseason points for the Husky women are senior Katie Follett (fifth in the 3,000-meters last year), junior Elisa Bryant (eighth in the weight throw), sophomore Mel Lawrence (12th in the 3,000-meters), sophomore Kelly McNamee (14th in the high jump), and mid-distance All-Americans Christine Babcock and Kailey Campbell who focused on the distance medley relay last year but ranked highly in the mile run.
The men begin the year unranked but will hope for big points starting in the pole vault where 2009 NCAA Runner-Up Scott Roth competes indoors for the first time since 2008. Senior Jake Schmitt also earned All-America honors indoors last year for his ninth-place finish in the 5,000-meters and will look to score, as will sophomore Jeremy Taiwo who took 12th at the NCAA Indoor meet last season.
The 2010 indoor track season begins next Saturday, January 16 with UW Indoor Preview at the Dempsey Indoor facility.