Washington Welcomes 11 Recruits For 2012-13
May 5, 2012
SEATTLE - Washington has an influx of track talent headed its way next year, as Head Coach Greg Metcalf has announced the signing of eleven student-athletes who will join the Husky program in the fall of 2012. The diverse group is big on speed, strength, and endurance, and will bolster the track and field squads in a number of areas.
Of the 11 athletes, six hail from the state of Washington, four of which are already state champions on the track. The remaining five are coming to the Northwest from California, New Mexico, Hawaii, Pennsylvania, and as far away as Scotland. Following a 2011 class heavy on distance runners, nine of the 11 signees are either sprinters or throwers.
"This is an exciting class for us because it really increases the depth of our sprinters and throwers," says Metcalf. "This is Coach Sheen's most dynamic and well-rounded group of sprinters yet and for Coach Crater to sign four talented recruits like this with just a few months on the job just goes to show that he's the right man to build up our throws group. Then we add a couple big time talents in Maddie in the distances and Jax in the pole vault and this has the makings of a fantastic group."
The most recognizable name to local prep track and field fans is women's distance standout Maddie Meyers of the Northwest School. Meyers has won 12 total state titles in cross country and track at the 1A level, but has distinguished herself nationally by setting the national high school record in the 2,000-meter steeplechase and competing for Team USA at the 2011 World Youth Championships. Meyers also won the prestigious 2010 Jim Ryun Dream Mile and was a two-time Foot Locker Cross Country Nationals finalist.
Meyers was one of five nominees for the 2011 Seattle Sports Star Female Athlete of the Year. "We are so excited about the future with Maddie, everything she is, and all she can and will be," says Metcalf.
Traveling overseas to reach Montlake will be Scottish pole vaulter Jax Thoirs, a native of Glasgow. Thoirs has set Scottish age group records every step of the way in the pole vault, and he is quickly closing in on the 17-foot mark. Assistant Coach Pat Licari says Thoirs, at 6-feet, 4-inches tall, has great tools and will be a great addition to UW's pole vault prowess.
The new class of sprinters features an athlete that Coaches Sheen and Licari could be fighting over. Chris Williams of Strath Haven High School in Pennsylvania is one of the nation's top hurdlers, and also a standout pole vaulter, quite a unique hybrid. Williams won Pennsylvania state titles last year in the 110m hurdles and pole vault, and was fourth at New Balance Indoor Nationals this year in the 60m hurdles. Coach Sheen says Williams is "an exciting athlete, that could help us in a multitude of ways: the 4x100, 200m, 110HH, and pole vault could all be events we use him in."
Two of the top in-state sprinters will also be moving into the Dempsey this fall. Wes Bailey, out of Spokane's Mead High School, currently leads the state in the short sprints, having shifted his focus more to the sprints after he won 4A state titles the past two years in the 300-meter hurdles. Bailey also won a Junior Olympics national title on a 4x400m relay. Also in the fold is defending 3A 200-meter state champion Quadelle Satterwhite of Lincoln High School in Tacoma. Satterwhite was also fourth in the 100-meters as a junior and again is looking like one of the favorites as the championship season rolls around. Bailey and Satterwhite won't go head-to-head at state this year, but should be passing the baton to each other for years to come at UW.
Wes is a team-first kind of guy, and he fits in perfectly with our group. He will have an immediate impact here at Washington," says Sheen. Satterwhite's track training was somewhat limited by the fact that he also lettered in basketball. "I think he has a big upside, when considering his amount of preparation leading into track seasons in the past."
Sheen went outside the state to find a pair of standouts for the women's group. Krista Armstead is "arguably the most talented female track and field athlete ever to come out of the state of New Mexico," says Sheen. Armstead swept state titles at 100-meters, 200-meters, 100-meter hurdles, and 300-meter hurdles as just a sophomore. She also has 400-meter hurdles experience, an event UW has been building strength in, as she took second at Junior Olympic Nationals in 2010 running 1:01.22.
Daje Pugh of Fairfield, Calif. has established herself as one of the top hurdlers in the state and in the nation. She was a finalist in both hurdles events at the California state meet last year, and she won this year's Sacramento Meet of Champions 300m hurdles race in 42.54 seconds, which ranks in the top-20 nationally. She also just clocked a slightly wind-aided (2.1) mark of 13.73 in the 100m hurdles, ranking her eighth nationally in 2012 under all conditions.
"When I was looking to add to our women's group, I was really looking for multi-dimensional athletes that can potentially help us in an array of ways," says Sheen, who says both Pugh and Armstead fit that mold.
Bolstering the women's throws group are in-state recruits Bev Coleman and Alyx Toeaina, and Hawaii's Hannah Sherrill. Despite coming to the sport late, competing for the first time as a junior, Sherrill has quickly become one of the top discus throwers in the nation. She currently ranks sixth in the country with a personal-best toss of 159-9.
Coleman and Toeaina should provide immediate help to the Huskies in the shot put, an event of great need for UW, and one which Coach Crater has had particular success in during his career. Coleman, from Bethel High, ranks in the top-40 nationally in the shot and was placed in the top-four at state the past two seasons. Toeaina, a Kentwood High product, was third at the 4A state meet last year in the shot and also captured the state discus title.
"Our women's throws recruiting class is going to be fun to watch over the next few years," says Crater. "They are all very talented, but they are all determined to be the best they can be. Beyond that, they are all from amazing families and have the values we think will fit into our program. Finally, they are all diehard Dawgs that want to add to our throws tradition and make their marks on our record books."
The men's shot put will also get a new specialist as Jack Scheideman from Roosevelt High will look to build on what has been a breakout senior season for him. A converted baseball player, Scheideman recently devoted himself fully to the throws, and he's added 14 feet to his shot put PR this season, now ranking third in the state at 57-8. Crater sees him as a "diamond in the rough" with tons of potential down the road.
2012 Washington Track & Field Recruits (Coach Quotes For Each Athlete Included)