March 4, 2005
SOUTH BEND, Ind. - Washington's distance medley relay squad kicked off the final qualifying weekend of the 2005 NCAA indoor track season with a bang Friday, moving into the top-10 of the national collegiate rankings with an NCAA-qualifying performance at Notre Dame's Alex Wilson Invitational.
The four-man team of freshman Austin Abbott (Chehalis, Wash./W.F. West), senior Sean Williams (Kirkland, Wash./Lake Washington), sophomore Ryan Brown (Renton, Wash./Renton) and senior Andy Fader (Everett, Wash./Cascade) needed just 9 minutes, 36.20 seconds to complete the 4,000-meter event, which consists of legs of 1,200 meters, 400 meters, 800 meters and 1,600 meters.
Washington's time -- second in UW history only to the 2004 team's school-record best of 9:35.35 -- equaled Wisconsin for fifth-fastest in the Alex Wilson field, which put six different teams into the national top-10. Michigan was the overall winner with a world-leading time of 9:28.12, while BYU (9:33.70), Notre Dame (9:35.12) and Missouri (9:35.25) rounded out the top-four.
Through the end of competition nationally on Friday, and with just two other distance medley relays to be contested around the country Saturday, the Huskies and Badgers are currently tied for ninth in the national collegiate rankings. Approximately 12 teams will be selected from the national descending order list Sunday when the field is set for next week's NCAA Indoor Championships in Fayetteville, Ark.
The Huskies' 4x400-meter relay of Williams, Brown, junior Shane Charles and junior Bruce Jackson, currently 10th in the NCAA rankings, will compete at the Alex Wilson meet Saturday, while the rest o the team tackles the West's best in Seattle at the UW Last Chance Qualifier, one of just six NCAA-approved "last chance" being hosted nationally this weekend. For complete results from the 2005 Alex Wilson Invitational, visit www.und.com, and for more information on the UW Last Chance Qualifier, visit www.gohuskies.com.