June 7, 2006
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Washington qualified four athletes out of preliminary rounds and clinched its first two All-America honors Wednesday on a busy first day of competition at the 2006 NCAA Track and Field Championships. The four-day meet, which includes 15 Husky athletes in 15 different events, continues through Saturday at Sacramento State's Hornet Stadium.
Seven of Washington's 15 NCAA Championships competitors were in action Wednesday, making it one of the busiest day's in UW's 85-year history at the event.
Junior Martin Bingisser (Bellevue, Wash./Interlake/CS Northridge) forecasted a good day for Washington with his first attempt in the morning's hammer throw, launching it 209 feet, 11 inches to place ninth in the qualifying round. Seeded 17th in the event, Bingisser upset eight higher-ranked competitors to earn one of 12 spots in Friday's final, towards which marks from qualifying will not be carried over.
"Martin didn't waste any time with that first throw - he was ready to go," said fifth-year head coach Greg Metcalf. "A lot of guys in this competition, I think, didn't know what to expect or were a little nervous. One thing you can count on with Martin is that he'll always be prepared to succeed."
Junior Ashley Lodree (Richmond, Calif./El Cerrito), meanwhile, had no trouble with either of two qualifying rounds Wednesday. Lodree clocked a 13.35-second time in the prelim and a 13.13 in the semi, advancing to Friday's final as the sixth-fastest qualifier overall.
USC senior Ginnie Powell, a graduate of Seattle's Rainier Beach High School, was the fastest qualifier in the semi, clocking a collegiate-record 12.55 seconds.
"I'm kind of battling the flu and allergies a little bit, so I definitely felt less than perfect out there," Lodree said. "I basically just did what I needed to do to get through. It's not what you do today that decides things anyway, it's what you do in the final. I'm just going to get myself better for Friday and come back ready to go."
With just six Americans remaining in the men's hammer competition, and just five Americans in the women's hurdles, both Bingisser and Lodree are guaranteed to earn All-America honors - awarded to the top-eight finishers, and the top-eight Americans, in every event.
Lodree's runs highlighted a near-perfect day for Washington on the track, as three of the Huskies' four track competitors advanced through qualifying.
Junior Ryan Brown (Renton, Wash./Renton) ran the fourth-fastest qualifying time in an 800-meter preliminary heat (1:47.95), while senior Bruce Jackson (Seattle, Wash./Nathan Hale) clocked the seventh-fastest time in UW history (46.41) in a 400-meter preliminary. Both will compete in semi-final rounds, Brown on Thursday and Jackson on Friday.
Frederick made history as the first Husky ever to compete at NCAAs in both the high and long jumps, but failed to advance to the finals in either event, tying for 15th in high jump (7-0 ¼) and placing 22nd in the long jump (23-3 ¼). Neither mark was good enough to advance the two-time All-American out of qualifying rounds, which he had entered seeded 15th and seventh, respectively.
Conwell, too, will be a surprise omission from Friday's final after failing to record a legal throw in Wednesday's prelim. The senior, making his NCAA Championships debut, threw two attempts into the cage that surrounds the throwing area, and was charged with a foot foul on his other attempt. Conwell has been outstanding for Washington all season, and was the No. 7 thrower in the nation entering the competition.
"We had just about a perfect day up until those final couple of results," Metcalf said. "That's really tough for Norris and Will. They've been two of our best guys all year, and I know they both wanted to do well at this meet. It may not have ended for them the way they imagined, but they should both be proud of the seasons they put together."
More successful in a failed qualifying attempt was freshman Anita Campbell (Vancouver, B.C./Aldergrove). A surprise qualifier for this meet out of the NCAA West Regional, Campbell shaved another 11 seconds off of her lifetime best in the event to finish in 16:29.91 - sixth-fastest in UW history and a Washington freshman record, but six seconds off the pace of 16:23.39 needed for one of 16 spots in Friday's final. Campbell finished 12th in her heat and 21st overall, fourth-best among freshmen in the race.
"Anita just keeps giving more and more every race," Metcalf said. "For her to make it to this meet as a freshman, and then to go out and run the way she did, shows me what a competitor she is. She's right there with the best ladies in the country, and she's only a freshman. It was a gutsy race and a great performance."
Washington will have eight individuals and one relay in action Thursday, including Pac-10 champions Juan Romero and Shane Charles, and senior pole vaulter Carly Dockendorf. A continuous live recap of UW events will be posted throughout the day to GoHuskies.com, while live results will be made available all day at NCAASports.com.
2006 NCAA Track and Field Championships
Hornet Stadium; Sacramento, Calif.
June 7, 2006
Men's Results (UW Only)
400m Dash Prelim (Heat 3 of 4): 4. Bruce Jackson, 46.41q; 800m Prelim (Heat 4 of 4): 4. Ryan Brown, 1:47.95q; High Jump (Qual.): t15. Norris Frederick, 7-0 ¼; Long Jump (Qual.): 22. Norris Frederick, 23-3 3/4; Discus (Qual.): --. Will Conwell, FOUL; Hammer (Qual.): 9. Martin Bingisser, 209-11Q.