March 8, 2008
SEATTLE - Junior mid-distance runner Michelle Turner became Washington's fourth miler to achieve an NCAA qualifying time today, running an impressive 4:40.08 that ranks 13th nationally. The mark was one of 39 qualifying marks achieved at the UW Last Chance Meet at the Dempsey Indoor Facility.
The meet marked the end of the 2008 Dempsey Indoor season, which once again produced dozens of NCAA and world Top-10 marks, with nearly half of all facility records being broken this year.
NCAA Indoor Championship selections will be announced on Monday evening via www.ncaasports.com. Huskies on the bubble include the women's distance medley relay, senior Amanda Miller in the 800-meters, and now Turner in the mile.
Turner, who specializes mostly in the 800-meters, thrilled the spectators with a lifetime-best in the mile. She joins sophomore Katie Follett and Miller, who posted automatic qualifying times, and junior Andrea Brown who made the "B" cut earlier this season. Turner's time fell just shy of the 4:40.00 auto mark, and is the fastest provisional mark at this point.
"Michelle has gone to NCAA's in the 800 before, so we know the talent that's there," said head coach Greg Metcalf. "We're just going to hope that her time holds up. In any other season, she would be a lock, but the women's mile is unbelievable this year. Our corps of milers has been the best in the country this year."
Most of UW's national meet qualifiers rested up this weekend prior to NCAA's next Saturday in Fayetteville, Arkansas. However, Husky pole vaulters Kelley DiVesta and Scott Roth, both securely in the NCAA meet, stayed sharp with NCAA provisional clearances, although neither improved their season-bests.
Senior Carl Moe, in his first complete race of the track season, ran UW's fastest mile of the day in 4:06.05. Bailey Schutte, a recent freshman addition, just missed cracking UW's Top-10 in the 3,000-meters, winning the race in a time of 9:42.93.
Two NCAA tickets were punched in the men's mile, as Oregon's Andrew Acosta and Nebraska's Peter van der Westhuizen both ran sub-four-minute miles.