April 30, 2008
ON THE TRACK: The Washington Huskies and Washington State Cougars renew one of the oldest track rivalries this Saturday in Pullman as the men's and women's track teams stage their annual dual meet. The rivalry dates back over 100 years, with the Husky men and Cougar women earning wins last year in Seattle. The meet takes place at WSU's Mooberry Track Complex, with the first events scheduled for 11 a.m. Both men's teams are currently ranked in the top-30, with Washington State sitting at 25th and Washington climbing to No. 30 this week.
LAST TIME OUT: Washington traveled to the Oregon Relays in Eugene for a two-day meet, and came away with eight new NCAA Regional qualifying marks. On day one, Senior Carl Moe showed just how far he's come since injury ended his final cross country season in the fall, as he came close to a personal best in the steeplechase, running 8:51.11, well under the NCAA Regional qualifying mark, and 25 seconds faster than his previous steeple run this year. Moe's time is the fastest in the West Region thus far this season. In the women's steeple, sophomore Mo Huber will join Moe in the postseason, as she qualified for her first West Regional with a personal-best time of 10:48.94. The Husky women's All-American mile trio all ran in the 1500-meters. Sophomore Katie Follett was fourth in 4:20.19, followed closely by senior Amanda Miller in 4:21.03. Senior Michelle Turner improved her season-best time, running 4:23.38 for an eighth-place finish. Other regional marks came from freshman Lauren Saylor in the 5000-meters, finishing in 16:49.73, and freshman thrower Kyle Nielsen in the javelin with a PR of 204-5. Junior Falesha Ankton's efforts highlighted day two, beginning with a win in the 400m hurdles in a personal-best time of 1:00.57. Ankton then came back and ran 13.68 in the 100m hurdles, which would rank fourth in UW history had it not been wind-aided. Both times were easily regional qualifying marks, the first and second of Ankton's career. The men trotted out their best relay units of the season, qualifying both for Regionals. The 4x100-meter relay was the real head-turner, as the foursome of junior Jordan Boase, senior James Fredrickson, junior Joe Turner, and freshman Ryan Hamilton blitzed the track in a time of 39.80, the fastest by a 4x1 relay in the West Region this year. The time is also the fourth-fastest in Washington history. Boase, Fredrickson, and Turner all returned along with sophomore Jeff Gudaitis to qualify in the 4x400-meter relay, in a time of 3:09.41. Turner also missed qualifying in the 200-meter dash by just one-hundredth of a second, finishing third in 21.36.
EVENT SCHEDULE: Following is the tentative time schedule for the UW-WSU dual. All times are pacific and subject to change.
11:00 a.m. Pole Vault Women 11:00 a.m. Long Jump Women 11:00 a.m. Javelin Throw Women 11:00 a.m. Hammer Throw Women 12:30 p.m. Long Jump Men 12:30 p.m. Shot Put Women 12:30 p.m. Hammer Throw Men 12:45 p.m. Javelin Throw Men 1:00 p.m. High Jump Women 1:15 p.m. 3000m Steeplechase Women 1:30 p.m. 3000m Steeplechase Men 1:45 p.m. 400m Relay Women 1:50 p.m. 400m Relay Men 2:00 p.m. Shot Put Men 2:00 p.m. Pole Vault Men 2:00 p.m. Discus Women 2:00 p.m. Triple Jump Women 2:00 p.m. 1500m Run Women 2:10 p.m. 1500m Run Men 2:20 p.m. 100m Hurdles Women 2:25 p.m. 110m Hurdles Men 2:30 p.m. High Jump Men 2:30 p.m. 400m Women 2:35 p.m. 400m Men 2:40 p.m. 100m Women 2:45 p.m. 100m Men 2:50 p.m. 800m Women 2:55 p.m. 800m Men 3:05 p.m. 400m Hurdles Women 3:15 p.m. 400m Hurdles Men 3:15 p.m. Triple Jump Men 3:20 p.m. 200m Women 3:25 p.m. 200m Men 3:30 p.m. Discus Men 3:30 p.m. 3000m Run Women 3:50 p.m. 3000m Run Men 4:10 p.m. 1600m Relay Women 4:15 p.m. 1600m Relay Men
UW-WSU DUAL MEET HISTORY: Washington and Washington State are two of the oldest track rivals in the nation, having met 92 times since 1900 and annually since 1946. The Cougars boast a 57-34-1 advantage on the men's side, but it is Washington which currently owns a three-meet winning streak, its longest since an 11-meet streak ended way back in 1932. Last year the UW men gave WSU its worst Husky Stadium defeat since 1922, winning 103-60. The Huskies also won the last meeting in Pullman, 112-91, in 2006. The women's situation is almost the exact opposite -- Washington holds the all-time series advantage at 19-13 (women's track was not considered a varsity sport before 1979), but the Cougars enter Saturday's meet having won three straight over UW, and 10 of the last 11 in the series overall. The one win in that span for the Husky women came in Pullman, a 108-95 victory in 2004. Top returning Husky performers from last year's meet include senior James Fredrickson, who won both hurdles runs and was part of UW's two victorious relays, senior Amanda Miller who swept the 800- and 1500-meter runs, senior Norris Frederick, who won both the high and long jumps, and senior Stevie Marshalek won won the pole vault.
The final period was placed on Washington's indoor season earlier this week, as 27 Huskies were named to the MPSF All-Academic team. The Huskies were second to Stanford in total honorees out of the 10 schools (eight from the Pac-10 and two from the Big West). Team member must be at least a sophomore academically and have maintained a cumulative GPA of a 3.0 or better.
Junior Jordan Boase was named Pac-10 Track Athlete of the Week for the week of Apr. 7-13 after his record-setting 400-meter run at the Sun Angel Classic. Boase broke Ja'Warren Hooker's school record in 44.82 seconds, which tied for the second-fastest time in the world this year. He becomes the first Pac-10 weekly award winner since Shane Charles in 2006. The award was the 15th for the Husky men all-time.
The Husky men's 10th-place finish at the 2008 NCAA Indoor Championships was their second-straight Top-10 finish indoors, following 2007's all-time high seventh-place finish. The last two years represent the two-best NCAA Indoor finishes in school history, and the 2007 place equaled UW's third-best NCAA finish overall since 1930.
Senior Norris Frederick was named the 2008 West Region Field Athlete of the Year by the U.S. Track and Field Coaches Association. It is the second year in a row Frederick won the award.
Washington has sent a total of 72 athletes to the NCAA Indoor and Outdoor Championship since 2005, the most prolific stretch in team history. Those 64 have returned home with 58 All-America honors, also obliterating all previous three-year records.
Washington's No. 2 indoor preseason men's ranking marked the highest ever ranking for a UW track program, surpassing last season's No. 4 indoor ranking. The ranking was based on returning athletes from last season's final descending order list. The Husky men came in 10th-place in the preseason outdoor list.
In both 2006 and 2007, Washington boasted at least one NCAA competitor in every event area -- sprints, hurdles, middle distance, long distance, relays, horizontal jumps, vertical jumps, pole vault and throws. This season the Huskies already covered every area indoors save for throws, long distance and hurdles.
In 2006-07, the Husky men were one of only four teams that finished in the Top-15 in cross country, indoor track and outdoor track.
Washington has boasted at least one Pac-10 champion in eight-straight years, and at least one NCAA champ for five-straight seasons. Senior Ryan Brown extended both streaks in 2007, winning NCAA indoor and Pac-10 800m crowns.
NCAA SELECTION PROCESS: Automatic NCAA Championships berths will be granted to the top-five finishers in each individual event, and top-three relays, from each of the four Regionals contested nationwide May 25-26. Athletes qualify for Regionals by meeting pre-determined standards, or by winning their conference title. The NCAA then supplements the Championships field with the highest-ranking competitors (6-7 per individual event and 5-6 per relay) from the national performance lists, provided the athlete competed in their event at a Regional meet and was not among the finishers to earn automatic berths. The lone exceptions are the 10,000 meters and multi-events, in which athletes qualify directly for the NCAA Championships by meeting provisional and automatic standards.
HUSKIES IN THE RANKINGS: The Husky men's team heads into the weekend ranked 30th, up 10 spots from their previous position. Impressive performances from Carl Moe and the 4x100-relay unit at last weekend's Oregon Relays helped the Huskies to the second-largest jump of any team in the top-40. Moe ranks first in the West Regiona and ninth nationally in the steeplecahse following his time of 8:51.11. The 4x100m relay also leads the region with a time of 39.80, fourth-fastest in school history, and ranks 13th in the NCAA. Jordan Boase remains first in the nation in the 400-meters after his school-record 44.82 run at the Sun Angel Classic. Husky men also rank in the Top-25 nationally in five other events, including Norris Frederick (18th, long jump), Jake Schmitt (16th, 10000m), David Nyland (14th, javelin), Austin Abbott (17th, 800m), and James Fredrickson (24th, 400m HH). The Husky women are outside the top-50, but have yet to see showings from veterans Dani Schuster, Anita Campbell, and Syreeta Martin. The women also suffer in the rankings due to the fact that the USTFCCCA does not count Katie Follett's 16th-ranked 5000m time, instead awarding points for her 10th-ranked 1500m time, judging that it would be unlikely for her to run both at NCAA's. Amanda Miller ranks just behind Follett in the 1500m, sitting 12th nationally, while Michelle Turner is also 28th in the event. All three finished in the Top-10 in the mile at NCAA Indoors. Kelley DiVesta also ranks 23rd in the women's pole vault. Falesha Ankton is also in the West Region top-10 in both the 100- and 400-meter hurdles. All told the Huskies have 25 NCAA Regional qualifying marks thus far. For a complete list of qualifiers and NCAA rankings turn to page four.
BOASE RIPS OFF RECORD RUN IN TEMPE: Despite a third-place finish at the NCAA Indoor Championships in the 400-meters -- the best finish ever by a Husky -- junior Jordan Boase remained something of an unknown on the national scene. Boase won a pair of All-America awards as a sophomore in 2006 as part of UW's 4x400m relay, but then left the team last season to decide if the sport still appealed to him. Thankfully for the Huskies and the track world at large, Boase decided to return. He broke the indoor school record to win the MPSF Championships indoors, and then bettered his PR again at NCAA's, finishing third in 46.34. Boase had not competed since that final indoor run heading into the April 12th Sun Angel Classic in Tempe, Ariz. with nearly a month off. Despite the downtime, Boase came out and shocked the track world with a NCAA-leading time of 44.82. The time came against a strong field including ASU's Joel Phillip who placed just ahead of Boase in second at NCAA indoors. Boase broke the school-record outdoors, held for eight years by UW legend Ja'Warren Hooker, who previously held every significant sprints record. His time also tied 2004 Olympic gold medalist Jeremy Wariner for second-fastest in the world this year., though Wariner has since retaken the world lead The Bothell, Wash. native, who competed in high school track for just two months before walking on at UW, is now coming into his own with the help of coach LaMonte Vaughn. Boase considered himself a 200m specialist coming into the season, and is still mastering the intricacies of the 400. Boase was named Pac-10 Track Athlete of the Week for his efforts, and by achieving the U.S. Olympic Trials "A" standard, has guaranteed himself a spot in the Olympic trials this summer in Eugene, where he figures to have a legitimate shot at making at least the relay pool.
FREDERICK THRILLS WITH WORLD-CALIBER LEAP: Based on his own lofty standards, senior Norris Frederick was having a so-so year. Sure, he ranked in the Top-10 in both the long jump and high jump, but the five-time All-American from Roosevelt High School had yet to give the Dempsey faithful the jaw-dropping show he's known for. That moment came at the MPSF Championships, when Frederick soared into the NCAA lead with a monstrous personal-best long jump of 26-7 3/4. When the length was announced, Frederick treated the fans to a celebratory back flip. The jump broke the UW indoor record, the Dempsey facility record, the MPSF meet reocrd, and what's more ranks as the second-best jump by an American this year, and the sixth-best jump in the world. The next day, Frederick turned in another personal-best, this time clearing 7-3 in the high jump. Entering the NCAA Indoor Championships as the favorite in the long jump, Frederick would have to settle for second, as he again surpassed 26-feet, going 26-2 3/4 to hold the lead through the first flight. However, Cal State Northridge's Reindell Cole went 26-7 3/4 with his first jump, matching Frederick's personal best from MPSFs and the mark held up, although none of Cole's remaining five jumps surpassed Frederick's best. The second-place long jump finish was the best in UW history, and Frederick capped off his best ever NCAA meet with a sixth-place high jump finish the next day, walking away with two more All-American awards to bring his total to seven, and scoring 11 of UW's 17 points. Frederick's long list of achievements includes a Pac-10 championship, three MPSF championships, an NCAA West Regional championship plus five long jump All-American awards and two All-American high jump honors, but he will be pushing hard for his first NCAA title in his final outdoor campaign.
IF IT CAN BE MEASURED, MILLER CAN RUN IT: Senior Amanda Miller was an invaluable weapon for the Huskies indoors, and has been a versatile speedster throughout her illustrious career. With a fifth-place finish in the mile at March's NCAA Indoor Championships, Miller led the first trio of All-American milers in UW history, finishing just ahead of teammates Katie Follett and Michelle Turner. It was Miller's second-straight All-Americna mile performance, following up a ninth-place finish in 2007. Miller also won All-American honors in the 800-meters in 2005. Miller, who ranks among UW's all-time Top-10 in seven events, posted her first automatic qualifier in the mile at the Husky Classic, running 4:39.93 which would have been a school record had Katie Follett not finished just ahead of Miller in the same race. She also bettered her own school record in the 800-meters at the UW Invitational on Feb. 2, finishing in 2:06.69, though she chose to stick with the mile at NCAA's rather than the 800. In 2005, Miller became UW's first female All-American in the 800-meters since 1985. This season, Miller decided that excelling at two indoor events just wasn't engaging enough, and she led UW's distance medley relay to its first ever NCAA berth, running the opening 1200-meter leg of the relay which slashed over 10 seconds from the school record entering this season. The stage was set for Miller's outstanding season in the fall, when she had her best cross country season to date, running third for the Huskies at the NCAA Championships. Miller placed 108th overall in her first cross country national meet, and the women's team established a new program benchmark with an eight-place finish. Since moving outdoors, Miller has twice ran the 1500-meters, and last weekend at the Sun Angel Classic she went under 4:20 for the first time, finishing in 4:19.49, the ninth-best time in the NCAA thus far, and easily a regional qualifying mark.
NO RECORD SAFE FROM FOLLETT: Katie Follett had a respectable freshman season by any measure, but the Fort Collins, Colorado native gave little warning for what has become a remarkable sophomore campaign this year. Everything started back in September, when Follett finished second at the Sundodger Invitational, leading head coach Greg Metcalf to praise her offseason work, saying she had simply made herself into a better distance runner. Metcalf proved prescient, as Follett went on to earn her first All-American award in cross country, finishing 19th at NCAA's to lead the women to a program-best eighth-place finish. Following the standard rest period for cross country athletes prior to track season, Follett has spent the indoor season crushing various school records, and putting her name up near the top of the NCAA rankings in multiple events. At the Husky Classic, Follett crushed UW's mile record by more than three seconds, finishing in 4:37.22 to obtain the automatic NCAA qualifying mark. The run was the third fastest in the NCAA at the time, and 12th-best by an American. Follett would not run the mile again until the NCAA Championships, where she submitted a sixth-place finish in 4:41.88, right behind teammate Amanda Miller and just ahead of ninth-palce finisher Michelle Turner, making UW the only school to have three All-Americans in one event. Also during the indoor season, Follett ran as the anchor leg of UW's distance medley relay,finishing off two school-record runs on the only two occasions the Huskies ran their DMR during the regular season. After cutting three seconds off the school record the first time out, the Huskies demolished that record once again at MPSFs, running 11:12.77 to move into the Top-10 of the NCAA this season. The time is over 10 seconds faster than the previous school record entering 2008. Also at the MPSFs, Follett went out and ran the 3,000m for the first time this season, and shattered that indoor record by more than seven seconds as well. Follett placed second to Stanford's Arianna Lambie in a time of 9:25.09 that gave her three NCAA qualifying marks, and three school records in less than three weeks. Already this outdoor season, Follett has placed herself among the Top-10 nationally in both the 1500m and 5000m, running consistenly great races every time out.
WOMEN'S VAULT TRADITION SWELLS: With one NCAA title, one Pac-10 title, and seven All-America honors over the past five years, Washington's pole vault unit under coach Pat Licari knows a thing or two about raising the bar. Heading into the 2008 season, two vaulters remained from the quintet that set an NCAA record in 2005 by being the first unit to send five vaulters over 13-feet in one season. One of the two was senior Stevie Marshalek, who only had outdoor eligibility remaining and is just rounding back into form as she cleared the Regional qualifying mark last week in Tempe. Marshalek is a four-time NCAA participant. Fellow senior Kelley DiVesta benefited from a full indoor season, and it turned out to be the best of her career. DiVesta did what every coach dreams of--setting a personal-best at the NCAA Championships. She cleared 13-9 1/4 to place seventh at the NCAA Indoor Championships in Fayetteville to earn her first career All-American honor, making eight awards for Licari's women's crew in six years. DiVesta is off to a solid start in the outdoor season as well, clearing the regional mark in her last two outings with higher vaults sure to come, perhaps as soon as this weekend in Eugene.
2008 INDOOR IN REVIEW: Washington track and field was put front and center before the indoor season even began, as the Husky men earned a No. 2 preseason ranking from the USTFCCCA. An all-time high for the program, the Huskies spent the early part of the season recovering from an assortment of injuries, and never quite reached full strength. But when NCAA's rolled around, senior Norris Frederick and junior Jordan Boase were enough to propel the men to a 10th-place finish. Frederick took second in the long jump and sixth in the high jump, and Boase was third at 400-meters, scoring 17 points total. Sophomore Scott Roth also made his third NCAA appearance, taking 10th in the pole vault. On the women's side, the Huskies broke into the Top-20 late in the season, thanks in large part to the women's dominant middle-distance corps. Seniors Amanda Miller and Michelle Turner and sophomore Katie Follett all earned All-American honors in the mile, making UW the only team at NCAA's to earn three All-American awards in one event. Miller was fifth, Follett sixth, and Turner ninth. Senior Kelley DiVesta also earned points at the national meet with her seventh-place pole vault finish. DiVesta set a new personal record at NCAA's with a 13-9 1/4 clearance to earn her first All-American award. The women's mile and pole vault added up to nine points for the Huskies, placing them in a tie for 22nd, the third-best finish all-time for the women. All told, the Husky men and women combined for seven All-America honors. Seven new indoor school records were set during the 2008 campaign, including three by Follett (mile, 3000m, DMR). The Dempsey Indoor was a hotbed for worldclass talent once again, and nine facility records were smashed during the season, including eight on the men's side. Norris Frederick provided one of the most thrilling facility records when he long jumped 26-7 3/4 to win the MPSF Championship on Feb. 29. Frederick's mark was a personal-best and sixth-best in the world at the time.
HEAD COACH Greg Metcalf: Former Husky All-American Greg Metcalf is in his sixth year as Washington's head coach of track and field and cross country, and his 11th year overall on the UW staff. Metcalf earned West Region Indoor Men's Coach of the Year honors in 2007 after leading Ryan Brown to his second-straight NCAA 800-meter title, and guiding the Washington men to a second-straight indoor conference title and a seventh-place tie at the NCAA Indoor meet, the latter an all-time program best. The men followed that benchmark with another Top-10 indoor finish in 2008, as they tied for 10th, the first time in history they posted consecutive Top-10 finishes. The Husky women meanwhile jumped back into the Top-25 with a 22nd-place finish on the strength of their trio of All-Americans in the mile. Amanda Miller, Katie Follett, and Michelle Turner all earned All-American honors in the mile, which falls directly under Metcalf's watch. No other team, men's or women's, had three All-Americans in one event. In Metcalf's first five full seasons at the helm, plus the 2008 indoor campaign, he has led the UW women and men to five top-25 finishes at the NCAA Championships per team. Individually, 22 UW distance runners have earned NCAA berths, with three earning NCAA titles and 15 grabbing All-America accolades, a list which does not include the team's three-time All-America distance medley relays (2005-07). In addition, Metcalf has led the Huskies' women's cross country team to the NCAA meet nine of his first 11 years at the helm, and is coming off a program-best eighth-place finish, with two women earning All-American honors for the first time in history. Metcalf guided the UW men to a 12th-place NCAA cross country finish in 2006. In 11 years atop Washington's distance program, Metcalf has coached his athletes to three NCAA championships, six Pac-10 titles, 29 All-American awards, 19 school-records and 102 NCAA Championships berths. A 1993 UW graduate, Metcalf was a two-time All-American in the steeple, and ran in the 1996 U.S. Olympic Trials.