Class Is Out But Outdoor Track Now In Session
March 21, 2013
SEATTLE - The Huskies run into some California sun this weekend to open up the outdoor track and field season, knocking off the rust at the USC Trojan Invitational this Friday and Saturday. The meet is the first stop on a team spring break trip that will take the Huskies north to the Stanford Invitational next weekend with a training stop in Santa Barbara in between the two meets.
First comes the opener in Los Angeles this weekend, which will see a number of Huskies competing for the first time all year, and several others competing in their marquee events for the first time or trying out new events. USC’s Loker Stadium will host the meet as well as the Pac-12 Championships later this season, so gaining familiarity with the facility will be an added bonus.
Competition at the Trojan Invite will be strong, with powerhouse Texas A&M sending a large contingent, along with the Trojans, Washington State, BYU, Hawaii, and Utah.
Huskies in action on the first day of competition this Friday is limited to javelin and hammer throwers, but the UW javelin crew deserves its own spotlight given its achievements over recent years and the long wait through the indoor season. All-Americans Joe Zimmerman and Jimmy Brookman will throw along with NCAA Prelim qualifier Quinn Hale and talented freshman Carson Fuller on the men’s side, while two-time NCAA Prelim qualifier Jordin Seekins and veteran Ally Mueller finally get to let loose in the women’s javelin. In the hammer, freshman Hannah Sherrill will be the lone Dawg to travel to West L.A. College where the hammer will be held.
Saturday’s action begins just after 9 a.m. and will run until around 4 p.m.
Starting with the sprints, freshman Quadelle Satterwhite will get a chance to race three of the NCAA’s top returners in the 100-meter dash, as he challenges Pac-12 Champ Aaron Brown of USC and Ameer Webb and Prezel Hardy Jr. of A&M. Matt Anthony will be in the second 100m heat. James Alaka will step up to 400-meters, looking for a PR at that distance, and freshman Andrew Prentice will also go in the quarter mile.
Sophomore Haley Jacobson is in the top heat of the women’s 100m dash, while at 400-meters, sophomore Baylee Mires will step into a “sprint” event for the first time down from her usual 800-meters, with freshmen Krista Armstead and Alexis Ford in the second 400m heat.
The hurdles should be exciting on Saturday, as Chris Williams, Shayne Moore, and Howard Lao look to build on their excellent indoor seasons, extending out to 110-meters. Williams ran the No. 3 60m hurdles time in school history indoors, and Moore and Lao both scored at MPSFs. Senior Dan Sanders also begins his final outdoor season in the 400m hurdles, after setting an open 400m PR indoors.
Leading the women’s hurdles is junior Kayla Stueckle, a quarterfinalist in the 400m hurdles last year, who will open in that race on Saturday along with sophomore Gianna Woodruff. Stueckle’s younger sister Kimberly will go in the 100m hurdles.
Moving up to 800-meters, the Dawgs will have a veteran group of Michael Miller, Joey Bywater, and Brad Whitley in the first heat on the men’s side and Kyle Blume and James Cameron in the second heat. In the women’s 800m, Joelle Amaral and Chloe Curtis, a SoCal native, will be in the top heat, with freshman C.J. Smith and Eleanor Fulton, competing for the first time this year after redshirting the indoor season, in the second heat.
With the long distance races the focus at Stanford in another week, several of UW’s distance men will drop down to 1,500-meters on Saturday, including Tyler King, Aaron Nelson and Aaron Beattie. Phoebe Merritt runs at 1,500-meters for the women, her first race of the year after sitting out indoors.
The longest run by a Dawg this weekend will be the 3,000-meter steeplechase, and some experienced Huskies could be making their first splashes through the water pit on Saturday. Justine Johnson and Liberty Miller, NCAA Prelim qualifiers both, are each entered in what would be their first career steeplechase. Aaron Nelson is also entered for the men; it would be his first steeple as well.
In the field, NCAA fourth-place finisher Logan Miller returns to competition after a foot injury forced her to redshirt the indoor season in the pole vault. She’ll be joined by Kristina Owsinski and Georgia Reynolds, while J.J. Juilfs, Jax Thoirs, and Chris Williams look to take the next step this season after up and down indoor campaigns. A.J. Maricich and Chase Walker will compete in the men’s high jump.
In the horizontal jumps, junior Kasen Covington, a two-time NCAA Prelim qualifier, will look to post a strong early mark in the triple jump. Jaleecia Roland is in the women’s triple jump, along with several other events for the heptathlete, and Sarah Schireman goes in the women’s long jump.
Freshman Alyx Toeaina will get her first outdoor action in the women’s shot put and discus throw, with Sherrill coming back to throw the discus after tossing the hammer on Friday.
Also getting a wide variety of work will be the Husky multis group, with Jeremy Taiwo focusing on a couple of his throws as he’s entered in the shot put and discus. Shelby Williams will be in the women’s long jump, 100m hurdles, and the 200m dash.