Live Video: Oregon Preview
SEATTLE – Washington heads outside to get some fresh air and also some airtime on the Pac-12 Networks this weekend, as track season shifts without pause to the outdoor version. The Huskies will split their squad this weekend, with nearly thirty athletes heading to Eugene for the Oregon Preview, and another 35 tracksters traveling down to Los Angeles for the Trojan Invitational. The meet at USC will be televised by the Pac-12 Networks (tape delayed on Monday at 6:30 pm) while the Oregon Preview will have a live video stream.
Traveling to Hayward Field for Saturday’s meet will be a large group of distance runners, along with a few sprinters and multi-event athletes and jumpers. The group going down to USC features a large number of sprinters, throwers, jumpers and vaulters. The Trojan Invitational gets underway Friday evening with a couple field events for the Dawgs with most of the action on Saturday.
The outdoor season brings with it several more events not featured indoors, events which the Huskies hope to excel at this season. Friday at USC will let the Husky javelin crew suit up for the first time all year, led by NCAA finalist Carson Fuller and two-time NCAA Prelim qualifier Quinn Hale. Also opening up in the 400-meter hurdles at USC are NCAA semifinal qualifiers Kayla Stueckle and Gianna Woodruff, who are fifth and fourth on the UW top-10 list, respectively.
A number of Husky freshmen will travel for the first time this weekend, a few making their official collegiate debuts. Javelin throwers Ashley Alexander and Brooke Brown are headed to USC, as is Lucas Strong, who had a strong indoor season in the sprints competing unattached. Several more Huskies will compete for the first time in 2014 after waiting out the indoor season. Senior Lindsay Flanagan, third in the Pac-12 10k last year, heads to Oregon, as do veteran men’s runners Brad Whitley and Rob Webster Jr. All three had outdoor eligibility but not indoor remaining.
Three of UW’s top distance runners who had great cross country seasons but limited indoor seasons are expected to race at Oregon: All-Americans Aaron Nelson, Katie Flood, and Megan Goethals. And fresh off NCAA Indoor Championship appearances, newly minted All-Americans Jax Thoirs and Diamara Planell Cruz will head to USC to vault outside. Senior Kasen Covington also will be one to watch in L.A. as he heads back to the site where he won the Pac-12 triple jump title last May. Covington is also looking to build on a personal-best indoor jump of 51-6 ½ set in winning the MPSF title three weeks back.