March 26, 2005
PALO ALTO, Calif. - Husky freshman Austin Abbott clocked a time among the 10 fastest in UW history, and freshman Norris Frederick posted his second NCAA Regional qualifying mark in as many days Saturday, capping an impressive weekend for Washington's track and field teams at the Stanford Invitational. Husky athletes combined for 12 NCAA qualifying marks at the two-day meet, which marked the team's full outdoor season debut.
In his first race since earning All-America honors in the distance medley relay at this month's NCAA Indoor Championships, Abbott tore through 800 meters in 1 minute, 48.57 seconds, UW's sixth-fastest all-time and the fastest by any Husky since 1997. The Chehalis, Wash., native placed fourth in Saturday's timed final, his first-ever collegiate competition outdoors. Both Abbott and junior transfer Shane Charles (Birch Grove, St. Andrew's/Central Arizona JC) bested the NCAA's regional qualifying standard in the event, with Charles placing 10th in 1:50.23.
Just as prolific was fellow indoor All-American Frederick, who qualified for May's NCAA Regional Championships Saturday in the high jump, barely 24 hours after earning a qualifying mark in the long jump Friday. The Roosevelt High School graduate soared over the bar Saturday at 6 feet, 10 3/4 inches, just one inch below UW's all-time top-10, and two inches off his collegiate best of 7-0 1/4, set indoors earlier this month.
None of the freshmen could top the Huskies' 4x400-meter relay, however, which earned Washington's lone Stanford Invitational title with a time of 3:08.37, sixth-best ever at UW and nearly a second faster than the team's closest challenger, Pac-10 rival USC. The team's win, in the day's final event, bookended an outstanding day for UW's men's relays, as Husky quarterback Isaiah Stanback anchored the school's 4x100-meter relay to an NCAA-qualifying effort of 40.61 seconds, second at the meet only to WSU's 40.42.
In all (and with results from Saturday's women's pole vault currently unavailable), 12 Huskies set or improved NCAA qualifying marks at the two-day meet, including 11 Regional qualifiers and one Championships qualifier. The top-five finishers in each event at May's NCAA Regional Championships will earn automatic bids to June's NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Sacramento, Calif., with the exception of athletes in the 10,000 meters and multi events. In those events, athletes qualify directly for the NCAA Championships, and do not compete at May's Regional.
For complete results from this weekend's Stanford Invitational, visit www.ezmeets.com.