May 23, 2005
SEATTLE - Nine high-school seniors and one community college student have signed letters of intent to compete in track and field for the University of Washington in the 2005-06 season, head coach Greg Metcalf announced Monday. Those 10 join early-period signees Zack Midles of Olympia, Tori Tyler of Palo Alto, Calif. and Laurie Roberts of Menlo Park, Calif., to round out Washington's class of 2006.
Including the three early signees, Washington will add eight women and five men to its team next season, including eight from Northwest high schools, and three from California. Four are state champions, and one -- hammer thrower Midles -- is the defending national prep champion in his event.
Heading the list of those to sign this spring is Portland, Ore., native Annaliese Chapa, the daughter of famed Oregon track star Rudy Chapa and sister of Stanford's Joaquin Chapa. The Central Catholic High School senior is already familiar with UW's Dempsey Indoor, having clocked a mile time of 4:51.47 in the facility in March that ranked seventh in the nation indoors this season. Chapa also boasts bests of 2:10 for 800 meters and 4:31 for 1,500 meters that each lead all Oregon preps in 2005.
"Annaliese is going to be a fantastic addition to our squad," says third-year Washington head coach Greg Metcalf. "With two parents who both competed at the highest levels of college athletics, and a brother a Division-I school, she has a ton of knowledge about the sport of track and field and knows exactly what it takes to be successful. I expect her not only to be a leader for us on race day, but off the track as well."
Joining Chapa will be a quartet of women's distance runners, including 2003 World Youth Games competitor Anita Campbell of British Columbia. The Abbotsford native won the British Columbia provincial cross-country title in 2004, and was a member of Team Canada at the 2005 World Junior Cross Country Championships in St. Denis, France.
Also signing with Washington this spring were seniors Emily Collins (Eugene, Ore./Marist), Brooke Lademan (Rolling Hills, Calif./Palos Verdes) and Brooke Anderson (San Diego, Calif./University City). Collins has twice been crowned Oregon's state champion at 800 meters, while Lademan and Anderson each rank among the premier cross country and track and field competitors in the state of California. Lademan boasts bests of 5:00 for 1,600 meters and 10:40 for 3,200 meters, while Anderson has been clocked at 5:07 for 1,600 meters, and can compete at any distance from 800 meters up.
Those five, plus top-ranked California prep Tyler, will help bolster a Washington women's distance unit that will be without seven of its top-10 runners from the 2004 fall season.
"Some of these young ladies are going to be thrown into the fire right away, no doubt about it," Metcalf says. "We wouldn't be bringing them in, though, if we weren't confident that they can handle any challenge we place before them. They're all remarkable young women, the kind this University will be proud to call their own."
In addition to the talented distance unit, Washington's women's squad will also welcome the talents of Falesha Ankton (Benicia, Calif./Benicia), who will join one of the nation's top young sprint/hurdles units. A state meet qualifier in 2004, Ankton backed up her preseason first-team All-State ranking from DyeStat.com with a sweep of 100- and 300-meter hurdles titles at last weekend's conference championships, her second-straight conference-meet double. Ankton boasts personal bests of 14. 41 and 43.54 seconds, respectively, in the two events, both among the top marks in the state in 2005.
"LaMonte Vaughn is putting together a heck of a hurdles unit for us, and Falesha fits in perfectly with what we're trying to build," Metcalf says. "She's a talented young lady and a terrific person, and will do some great things in her career."
On the men's side, Washington's signees consisted of three distance runners and one sprinter, all originally from Northwest high schools.
Topping the list are a pair of state cross-country champions, including 2004 4A champ Kelly Spady (Muiklteo, Wash./Kamiak) and 2003 2A champ Michael Dols (Chelan, Wash./Chelan). Spady came from well behind to win Washington's 4A state cross-country title last fall, and has run times of 4:17 (1,600m) and 9:12.63 (3,200m) this spring to rank among the top high-school seniors in the state. Dols, meanwhile, has excelled at distances from 4x100 meters to the 3,200 meters during his prep career, in addition to earning a state cross country title.
Rounding out the distance trio is Auburn-Riverside senior Jordan McNamara, currently the state's second-ranked 3,200-meter competitor. A former teammate of Husky sophomore Carl Moe, McNamara won the 2004 Sunfair Invitational cross country meet, and has clocked times of 4:15:17 (1600m) and 9:08 (two-mile) this spring.
"These are three guys who know what it feels like to cross the finish line in first place," Metcalf says, "I want a team that knows how to win, that's been there before. These guys have all done that."
Perhaps the biggest impact in 2006, however, will come from the team's final signee, Highline Community College freshman Alex Harcourt. A 2004 graduate of Kentridge High School, Harcourt boasts a best of 46.61 in the 400 meters that would have scored at last weekend's Pac-10 Championships, and has also been clocked at 21.50 in the 200-meter dash. He will run in both events for the Huskies next season, as well as both the 4x100- and 4x400-meter relays.
"We're excited as can be to have Alex on our team next year," Metcalf says. "We've had the chance to watch him run here at Dempsey Indoor on a couple of occasions, and have always been impressed by what we saw. He's definitely going to be a guy you'll be hearing about right away in 2006."
All 13 of Washington's 2006 signees, including Midles, Tyler and Roberts, will enroll at Washington in the fall and be eligible to compete immediately. In addition to those mentioned above, the Huskies are also expected to sign a number of other competitors in various events throughout the summer.
For complete information on the latest UW track and field signings, visit www.gohuskies.com.