Feb. 25, 2012
SEATTLE - The bigger MPSF Championship meet indeed proved to be better, as record after record went by the wayside in the Dempsey Indoor today as the two-day meet wrapped up. Seven MPSF meet records and four facility records were set over the two days, and Husky senior Jordan Carlson broke the 400-meter school record a day after running on UW's record-setting DMR.
The Mountain Pacific Sports Federation was joined for the first time this year by full men's and women's teams from Colorado and BYU, as well as the Utah women's teams, bringing the total to 12 men's teams and 14 women's teams. The Husky women finished fifth overall with 56 points while Stanford took home the title. Arizona State dominated the men's team race, winning with 131.5, while Washington placed eighth with 37.5 points.
"I think our women's team competed really well," said Husky Head Coach Greg Metcalf. "For them to finish fifth-place here is pretty good. Our women's DMR obviously is the highlight of our weekend, along with Jordan Carlson. I was proud of all of them and they're fired up to go to nationals. Megan Goethals had another great weekend and then Taylor Nichols, Logan Miller, and Elisa Bryant did well for us in the field and competed like the veterans that they are."
The men suffered from a number of close calls and what-ifs?
"I think our men's group had a handful of near misses where if you get a couple more seconds here and a couple more inches there would have made for a great meet," said Metcalf. "Our DMR sets another school record, Mo McNeal runs a big 400-meter PR, J.J. Juilfs was in the mix for the title, but we're still right on the edge in a lot of spots for nationals. The goal now is to go see if we can punch a couple tickets to the NCAA Indoor meet next weekend and other than that get ready for outdoor track season."
One night after running the 400-meter leg on Washington's school record-setting DMR, senior Jordan Carlson was back chasing another record in the open 400-meters. The Spokane native broke the outdoor school record last spring, and after coming up a split second short in her last outing, today Carlson was not going to be denied. She was fourth in her heat when the runners broke their lanes, but she made a move around the outside and powered to the win in her heat in 54.67 seconds, well under the old mark of 55.11. That time wound up fourth-place overall.
The men's 400-meter final was another suspenseful blend of power and endurance. Sophomore Maurice McNeal ran in the fastest of eight heats, finishing third-place overall in a new personal-best indoor time of 46.69 seconds. Stanford's Amaechi Morton got the win in 46.16, the No. 2 time in the NCAA this year. McNeal jumps to fourth in the UW Top-10 and now ranks 14th nationally, right about on the bubble for NCAA Indoors.
Junior Logan Miller cleared a new indoor career-best in the pole vault, going over 13-4 ½, which tied for the second-best clearance of the day, though she placed fourth overall with the tiebreakers. Still, Miller creeps into the top-30 nationally. She took three attempts at 13-10 ½, a bar that would likely take her to NCAA Indoors, but was unable to clear today. The new indoor PR ranks her seventh on the Top-10 list.
Senior Taylor Nichols and junior Shaniae Lakes each scored once again in the triple jump. Nichols, the runner-up last year, jumped 40-feet, 5-inches to take fourth this time around, while Lakes was sixth with a mark of 39-10. Maricich led the men's jumpers with a clearance of 6-11 ½, his third time over that bar indoors. That wound up sixth-place today.
Sophomore Megan Goethals ran another of her usual gutsy performances to place third overall at 3,000-meters in a new PR of 9:08.42, which went under the NCAA Auto time of 9:10.00. That's the second-best time in school history behind only teammate Katie Flood's run earlier this year. Goethals also has the Auto mark in the 5k so she will have her pick of the two events at NCAA Indoors.
Also running PRs in the top heat of the 3k were junior Christine Babcock, who finished eighth in 9:16.96, and sophomore Chelsea Orr who ran 9:23.67 even after running the 1,200m leg of the DMR last night. Orr's time bumps her up to seventh on the UW Top-10 list, while Babcock remains fifth. The Husky women have posted four of the Top-10 times in school history in the 3k this season.
The men's 3k saw Joey Bywater battle hard after a DMR anchor carry just last night. He wound up just out of the points in ninth place, but lowered his PR by 13 seconds, running 8:03.83 to now rank seventh on the UW Top-10. Freshman Tyler King also had a nice PR in the first heat, running 8:11.48, a five second best.
Freshman Eleanor Fulton made her mile debut today after having only run on a 4x800m relay back at the UW Indoor Preview. She ran near the front of the pack throughout, ending up sixth in 4:46.09. Junior Justine Johnson made a late push to take eighth and grab another point in 4:47.39.
In the final of the men's mile, freshman Meron Simon led a trio of Huskies across the finish in a tight pack, with Simon coming in eight-place in a new PR of 4:05.24. Ryan Soberanis was right alongside in ninth in 4:05.25. Michael Miller also lowered his PR to 4:05.85 with an 11th-place finish.
In the sprints, junior James Alaka settled for seventh in the 60-meter dash final. He came out of the blocks behind, and was closing fast but needed the additional 40-meters of the outdoor track to get all the way back. Junior Shayne Moore also added a point in the 60m hurdles final, placing eighth in 8.57.
The men's 4x400-meter relay ended the afternoon with another season-best, as Sam Rucker, Dan Sanders, Alaka, and McNeal combined for a time of 3:10.64, placing fifth. That moves them up a couple notches to eighth all-time.
Closing things out with a couple more personal-bests, junior Laura Schmitt ran a nice indoor PR at 800-meters, taking second in her heat in 2:12.61. While Carlson got the school record, sophomore Kayla Stueckle also took more than half a second off her PR, as she ran 56.11 which gets into the Top-10 list at No. 9. Early in the day in the men's shot put, freshman Danny Shelton also submitted his best throw of the season, going 51-3 ½ to finish 12th overall.
The Dempsey Indoor season officially wraps up next Saturday with the UW Final Qualifier. From there it's on to the NCAA Indoor Championships, hosted by Boise State on March 9-10.