Huskies Win DMR In Another NCAA Leading Time
Feb. 24, 2012
SEATTLE - Sophomore Katie Flood broke her third school record in as many races this year, only this time she had help, as Flood anchored the Husky distance medley relay to the victory on day one of the MPSF Championships in an NCAA-leading time of 10:55.01. Sophomore Chelsea Orr led off, passed to senior Jordan Carlson, then freshman Baylee Mires, and finally Flood took the baton in fifth-place but powered down the final stretch for a dramatic win over Oregon.
Washington's win is well under the NCAA Automatic qualifying time for the DMR, assuring Orr, Carlson, and Mires of their first trips to the NCAA Indoor Championships, while Flood will be making a return trip. Flood has already qualified in the mile run and 3,000-meter run with NCAA leading marks in those events as well, so she can pick and choose what she runs in Boise.
The 10:55.01 time smashed the old Dempsey Indoor record of 11:02.15, as well as the previous Washington school record of 11:05.80. Furthermore, Washington's time today is the fifth-fastest time in NCAA history. It was also an MPSF Championships meet record. The top four teams all went under the old Dempsey record, indicating the strength of the field and the likelihood of these teams meeting again at NCAAs in two weeks.
The Ducks were right behind the Huskies, finishing in 10:55.78, which is now the No. 2 mark this season. Oregon anchored their quartet with Anne Kesselring, the defending NCAA Champion outdoors at 800-meters, who set Oregon's school record in the mile two weeks back in the same race that Flood posted her mile mark. Kesselring took the lead from Flood around the final backstretch, but Flood was able to answer and passed Kesselring on the inside to take the victory.
The distance medley relay is comprised of a 1,200-meter leg, then 400-meters, 800-meters, and finally a 1,600-meter leg, just short of a standard mile. Flood's split for the 1,600m was unofficially at 4:28.8. It's the second MPSF title for UW in the DMR, previously winning it in 2009.
Still, Flood managed to critique her final leg, saying "I think I might have done it a little wrong. I went out pretty hard. I got excited since Baylee was coming in so hard. But after that I just tried to maintain, and keep moving up, and stay calm. I think it's always easier to battle like that when you have a team behind you that just worked their butts off and ran so hard, so when you cross the line you're not crossing for yourself, it's a lot easier to find that motivation."
Carlson added to Flotrack.org that "we knew (Flood) had it the whole time."
Washington's men's DMR also broke the school record, though amazingly it was only good for fourth, as BYU won with a 9:29.00, a new NCAA leader itself. UW clocked 9:35.06, which would place them seventh nationally based on marks entering the weekend. Senior Ryan Soberanis led off, passed to sophomore Maurice McNeal, then junior Brad Whitley and junior Joey Bywater anchored. The Huskies will hope that time stands up to earn them a trip to Boise, Idaho for the NCAA Indoor Championships in two weeks.
With day one in the books at the MPSF Championships, Arizona State leads both the men's and women's standings, while the Huskies sit fourth in both. The MPSF features all Pac-12 Conference teams that compete in indoor track and field, along with select members of the Big West and West Coast Conferences. Action resumes on Saturday at 10:30 a.m. and runs until 3 p.m.
The day started at 12:30 with the men's weight throw. Senior Angus Taylor, on what could very well be the final weight throw attempt of his collegiate career, set a new personal-best, throwing 62-7 ¾ on his sixth and final attempt to finish in second-place, earning UW eight early points. That toss jumps Taylor up to No. 4 on the UW career Top-10 list.
In the women's weight throw, senior Elisa Bryant was just off her season's-best, as she threw 63-1 ¼ to place third overall and grab six points for the women.
The women's pentathlon was held on Friday, and sophomores Sarah Schireman and Shelby Williams each set new personal-bests and Top-10 marks. Schireman finished 10th overall with 3,607 points, the sixth-best mark in school history. She posted season-best marks in four of the five events, with a best individual finish of third in the long jump at 18-2 ¼. Williams finished 15th, upping her PR to 3,487 points, which now ranks ninth in school history. Freshman Jaleecia Roland had a good first four events, but was unable to go in the final 800-meter run.
The 5,000-meter runs were another highlight Friday evening. Three Husky women scored in the top-eight, led by senior Mel Lawrence, who made her season-debut and finished fourth in a time of 16:32.76. Junior Lindsay Flanagan was a few seconds back in fifth-place, and redshirt freshman Liberty Miller placed eighth in 16:50.21 in her first official 5k.
On the men's side, junior Rob Webster Jr. broke the 14-minute barrier in the 5k for the first time in his career. The Puyallup native finished seventh in a time of 13:55.16, which moves him up to fifth in school history and into the top-25 nationally this season. Redshirt frosh Aaron Beattie was also impressive, running 14:16.80 to place 14th.
The preliminary heats for the 60-meter dashes and hurdles were all contested today. Junior Shayne Moore advanced to the finals in the hurdles, running 8.32 in his prelim. Junior James Alaka also advanced in the 60-meter dash, clocking 6.85 in his prelim. Sophomore Matt Anthony also ran a big PR of 7.00 seconds and senior Ryan Hamilton had a season-best 6.95.
Late in the evening, UW picked up some more points in the men's pole vault, as freshman J.J. Juilfs tied for third-place. Juilfs cleared 17-1 ¾ on his second attempt, but was unable to get over what would have been a new PR of 17-7 ¾. Senior Robby Fegles cleared 16-8, which was the fifth-best clearance, but he placed ninth overall based on number of attempts.
Saturday's finals include the 60-meter dashes and hurdles, the 400-meters, 800-meters, mile runs, 3,000-meters, and 4x400-meter relays. The men's heptathlon will run its final three events, and the women's pole vault, men's and women's triple jumps, men's and women's high jumps, and men's and women's shot puts will all be decided in a jam-packed day.