Finals Trips On The Line For Huskies At NCAA Prelims
May 25, 2011
NCAA WEST PRELIMINARIES
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ON THE TRACK: A large pack of Huskies will join a huge field this week in Eugene for the first rounds of the NCAA Track & Field Championships. Hayward Field is one of two sites that every athlete must pass through successfully in order to advance to the NCAA final rounds coming up June 8-11 in Des Moines, Iowa. Washington has qualified 34 athletes for the three-day prelims, with at least one athlete in every event area. The meet gets underway on Thursday, May 26 with full days of competition on Friday and Saturday as well.
This is the second season of the current NCAA qualifying format, which gathers two fields of equally huge size in Eugene, Oregon for the West Prelims and Bloomington, Indiana for the East Prelims. Approximatley two thousand athletes will be in Eugene for the West Preliminary Rounds, encompassing all schools on the western half of the country. Each individual event is filled with a field of 48 athletes, and over the three-day meet those events will be whittled down to only 12. The same process will also be going on in Bloomington, thus making for final fields of 24 athletes in each event in Eugene.
Thursday's first day of competition will be an eventful one, beginning right off the bat with the women's javelin at 10 a.m. which will include junior Amanda Peterson, ranked third in the NCAA, and sophomore Jordin Seekins. The men's javelin will follow later in the afternoon, where All-Americans Kyle Nielsen and Joe Zimmerman will look to throw their way to Des Moines. Sophomore Jimmy Brookman, fourth at the Pac-10 Championships, unfortunately suffered a recent arm injury that looks like it will keep him from competing.
Other field event participants on day one include senior All-American Scott Roth and junior Robby Fegles in the pole vault (3:45 pm), and sophomore Julian Bardwell in the men's long jump (12 noon). Roth tied for the West Prelim title a year ago and won the Pepsi Team Invite title at Hayward Field earlier this season.
Freshman Kayla Stueckle will be the first Husky to take to the track, as she competes in the 400-meter hurdles at 3:30 pm on Thursday. Freshman Katie Flood and sophomore Justine Johnson compete in the 1,500-meter first round. They are seeded seventh and 17th, respectively, in the West. Then sophomore Joey Bywater runs his first round race in the men's 1,500-meters. Later in the day, redshirt freshman Gareth Gilna and junior Ryan Styrk each make their NCAA debuts in the first round of the 800-meters.
Pac-10 Champion James Alaka starts his quest to return to the NCAA final site in the 100-meter dash on Thursday, and senior Dominique Lauderdale will do the same on the women's side. School record-holder Jordan Carlson looks to come back from a hamstring injury that kept her out of Pac-10s, and run well at 400-meters, while freshman school record-holder Maurice McNeal will be one to watch in the men's 400-meters as he is ranked 10th in the West.
Thursday closes with sophomore Lindsay Flanagan in the 10,000-meter run, which has just one round so the top-12 across the line will book NCAA finals tickets. Flanagan was fifth in the 10k at Pac-10s two weeks ago.
Every one of the field events on Friday will include a Husky, beginning with Elisa Bryant in the women's hammer at 10 a.m. Junior Taylor Nichols and sophomore Shaniae Lakes will then compete in the triple jump. Lakes and Nichols are third and fourth on UW's Top-10, respectively. They'll be followed by junior Angus Taylor in the men's hammer throw, and freshman A.J. Maricich in the men's high jump. Sophomore Logan Miller then makes her NCAA debut in the women's pole vault.
On the track, junior Jeremy Taiwo will try to combat boredom, competing in just one event this week, as he runs the 110-meter hurdles first round. Quarterfinal rounds then follow in the 400m dash, 100m dash, 800m run, and 400m hurdles. Alaka will then open up at 200-meters at 6:10 p.m. The last race will be sophomore Michael Miller in the quarterfinals of the 3,000-meter steeplechase.
Saturday, Bryant is back on the field in the discus throw, coming off a PR at Pac-10s where she placed fifth. Kasen Covington, the freshman record-holder, will go in the men's triple jump, and sophomore Conner Larned throws the disc at 3:30 to conclude UW's field action.
Washington hopes to be in the mix for advancing in the men's 4x100-meter relay, as McNeal, Alaka, Colton Dunn, and Ryan Hamilton have gone under 40-seconds their last two outings and ran the No. 5 time in school history at Pac-10s at 39.62 seconds. There will just be one round to cut the 24 relay squads down to 12. Second rounds will follow for the 1,500m run, 110m hurdles, and 200m dash. The final Huskies to lace up the spikes will be senior Colton Tully-Doyle and freshman Megan Goethals in the men's and women's 5,000-meters. Goethals was the top Husky women's finisher at Pac-10s, taking runner-up honors in the 5k with a gritty final kick.
ALL ROADS LEAD TO IOWA: The outdoor track season heads towards the NCAA Championships in Des Moines, Iowa from June 8-11. For the second season, athletes will reach the final site by qualifying through the preliminary rounds, held at two different locations. The western half of the country will be in Eugene, Oregon for the West Prelims on May 26-28, and the eastern half will meet in Bloomington, Indiana. There are no set NCAA qualifying standards anymore; athletes will qualify for the prelims by ranking in the top 48 in their event in their respective region. For relay teams it will be the top 24. The top-12 finishers from each regional meet then advance to Des Moines. Therefore most events will feature initial fields of 96 athletes over the two sites, that will be whittled down to 24 that advance to Iowa.
HUSKIES IN THE RANKINGS: The latest set of USTFCCCA Rankings takes its data solely from the NCAA Prelim entry lists, and the Husky men moved up to a season-high 19th nationally. The women come in at No. 51 this week, up seven spots from the week prior. Providing big points for the men is Scott Roth, who remains No. 1 nationally in the pole vault. Jeremy Taiwo's Pac-10 winning decathlon score has him ranked sixth nationally. Senior Kyle Nielsen and sophomore Joe Zimmerman are ranked 11th and 12th, respectively, in the javelin for a good chunk of points. Also ranked in the top-25 nationally is freshman Maurice McNeal, 11th in the 400-meters off his freshman school record at Pac-10s, and UW's 4x100m relay of McNeal, Alaka, Dunn, and Hamilton, ranking 14th. The men's team was ranked 21st in the preseason. Junior Amanda Peterson is providing the most points for the women as she ranks third nationally in the javelin. Other top marks come from Katie Flood at 1,500-meters (15th), Lindsay Flanagan at 10k (18th), and Megan Goethals in the 5k (15th). The men return all of their point scorers from the 2010 NCAA Outdoor Championships at which they finished 15th.
ALAKA'S ATHLETE OF THE MEET EFFORT LEADS UW AT PAC-10 TRACK: Sophomore James Alaka flashed to some Husky history at the Pac-10 Track & Field Championships, as he captured the 100-meter dash and shortly thereafter came back and powered to the victory in the 200-meter dash as well. Alaka, the London native, stakes his claim now as the fastest man in the Pac-10, becoming the first Husky since Ja'Warren Hooker in 2000 to win both sprint titles. Alaka claimed his first title in the 100-meters in 10.29 seconds, then powered to the 200-meter win in a time of 20.85 seconds. He was also a key part of UW's third-place effort in the 4x100-meter relay, where the Huskies ran a huge season-best of 39.62 seconds, fifth-best in school history. All those points earned Alaka the Pac-10 Athlete of the Meet award for the individual high point scorer. He's the first Husky to win that honor. For a brief moment it looked like the Husky men's javelin crew would make history, as midway through round five the Huskies stood in first, second, and third. But on his fifth throw, USC's Cooper Thompson hit for 238-6, just eight inches farther than Kyle Nielsen's best to that point. Nielsen would take second, his best Pac-10 finish, at 237-10, Joe Zimmerman finished third with a best of 235-8 and sophomore Jimmy Brookman just missed the podium with a fourth-place finish at 226-5, which came on his fifth throw. Highlighting day two for the Husky women was an amazingly gritty effort from freshman Megan Goethals in the women's 5,000-meters. Goethals, took a big lead by herself from the start, holding it for more than half the race, then despite getting caught with four laps to go, she battled back to nearly upset NCAA Indoor Champ Jordan Hasay of Oregon, but Hasay was able to hold on for the win in 16:24.10 with Goethals in second in 16:25.13. Another star of the meet for UW was freshman Maurice McNeal, who rolled to a stunning 45.60 in the prelims of the 400-meter dash, shattering the freshman school record and PR'ing by over a second. McNeal settled for fifth in the final in 46.23, but also took fifth at 200-meters to wrap a great first Pac-10 meet. Additional top-five finishers for the Husky men included senior Scott Roth (4th, Pole Vault), and junior Angus Taylor (5th, Hammer). Top-five finishers for the women included junior Amanda Peterson (4th, Javelin), junior Elisa Bryant (5th, Discus), junior Taylor Nichols (5th, Triple Jump), and sophomore Lindsay Flanagan (5th, 10,000m). The Husky men's team finished seventh with 76 points, but were just 12 points out of third-place. The 76 points was the most since 2007. The UW women were ninth with 37 points.
TAIWO NOW PAC-10'S BEST: Junior Jeremy Taiwo can officially call himself the best all-around athlete in the Pac-10, as the Renton, Wash. native captured the coveted 2011 Pac-10 decathlon title this past Friday and Saturday at University of Arizona's Drachman Stadium, scoring a career-best 7,742 points. He could have been the first decathlete in the NCAA this year to break the 8,000 point barrier, were it not for an elbow injury that forced Taiwo to throw the javelin with his non-dominant left hand and thus finish last in that event by a wide margin. But Taiwo was so strong throughout the rest of the competition that he was able to overcome the setback. On Friday's first day of competition, Taiwo went five-for-five on personal-bests, with wins in the high jump (6-11) and 400 meters (48.49) as he posted a huge first-day PR of 4,215 points. He also finished second in the 100-meters (10.98), long jump (23-11 1/2), 110-meter hurdles (14.41) and was third in the pole vault (15-9 3/4) and shot put (42-11). Taiwo was in a battle with Oregon's David Klech throughout. Heading to the javelin, a torn UCL in Taiwo's right elbow made the event too painful to endure. He was able to throw 107-feet left-handed to still put some points on the board, and maintain his lead heading into the final 1,500-meter run. Taiwo wasn't satisfied with simply sticking close to Klech in the last event, however, as he powered past him on the final lap to take second in 4:18 and sew up the win. Taiwo became the first Husky to win the decathlon title since Mike Ramos in 1986. He also earned Pac-10 Men's Field Athlete of the Week honors on Monday.
LAST YEAR AT THE NCAA WEST PRELIMS: The entire western half of the country corralled their best athletes in Austin, Texas at the end of May for the preliminary rounds of the 2010 NCAA Championships. Washington took 29 athletes to the huge three-day meet, 10 of which advanced on to the final site in Eugene. On the first day it wasn't long before Washington had its first two NCAA qualifiers. Freshman Joe Zimmerman took second in the javelin with a new PR of 235-3, and junior Kyle Nielsen was close behind in fourth at 229-7. Freshman Jimmy Brookman also made the final, taking 16th despite coming in seeded just 30th. Closing out the first day was senior Anita Campbell, who extended her Husky career for another 10,000-meters, as she placed 11th in 34:39.60, to earn her fourth NCAA Outdoor bid. In the men's 10k, senior Jake Schmitt was 19th and senior Alec Bromka was 34th in their final Husky runs. The next day was the strongest for UW. Senior Ryan Vu and junior Scott Roth both advanced in the pole vault, clearing a combined six bars on just seven attempts. Roth was a perfect two-for-two, tying for first with a clearance of 17-4 1/2. Freshman James Alaka joined the party soon after, qualifying eighth in the 100-meter dash, UW's first NCAA participant in the 100 since Ja'Warren Hooker 10 years earlier. Outside the track, hammer throwers Zack Midles and Angus Taylor were busy tossing PRs. Midles easily qualified with a new career-best of 212-7, extending the senior's career to another nationals. Taylor was just one spot and one foot short of advancing, as he placed 13th, but the sophomore had several PRs on the day, topping out at 201-feet. He had been seeded just 27th. Finally, sophomore Mel Lawrence punched her ticket in the steeplechase, running the night's seventh-best time of 10:16.32. Highlighting the final day were the efforts of seniors Falesha Ankton and Katie Follett. Ankton grabbed the final spot in the 100-meter hurdles with the best race of her career, as she clocked 13.37 to make Eugene. Follett, among the favorites, led her quarterfinal heat from the start and cruised to third in 4:19.36. Alaka increased his workload by also advancing in the 200-meter dash in a season-best 20.71 seconds. That came after he helped the 4x100m relay to a great time of 40.14 seconds, nearly half a second under their previous best. Sam Rucker, Alaka, Colton Dunn, and Ryan Hamilton, were the 24th and final team in to Austin, but wound up 15th. Also surprising was sophomore Max O'Donoghue-McDonald, who took 21st in the 5k after coming ranked 47th. UW did take a couple hits when senior Kailey Campbell in the 1,500m and junior Colton Tully-Doyle in the 5,000m were both tripped and knocked down and were unable to finish. Both were running well and had great shots to move on.
ALAKA, ROTH GO BACK-TO-BACK WITH PAC-10 POTW: Washington collected two Pac-10 Track & Field Athlete of the Week honors over the first two weeks of the season. First up was sophomore James Alaka, who garnered Men's Track Athlete of the Week honors on April 11. That came after the Pepsi Team Invitational, in which Alaka won the title at 100-meters, 200-meters, and ran a leg on the winning 4x100-meter relay team. Alaka won the 100-meters in 10.53 seconds into a strong headwind, winning by nearly three tenths. He then cruised to a 21.18 second win at 200-meters, again winning by a large margin into the wind. The relay clocked a season-best 40.24 seconds. On April 18, senior Scott Roth was named Men's Field Event Athlete of the Week, the first such honor in his decorated career. Roth broke the school pole vault record with a win at the Mt. SAC Relays. Competing against a field of professionals that included vaulters with Olympic Games experience, Roth stole the show with a sterling performance. Roth cleared two bars cleanly and then broke the record with a jump over 18-9 1/4, once again needing just one try. That easily surpassed American record-holder Brad Walker's former school record of 18-6 ½ set in 2003. Roth took three shots at 19-0 ¾, which would have been a new Pac-10 record, barely brushing off the bar on his second attempt. Still, the 18-9 ¼ clearance was the best pole vault by an American in 2011 indoors or outdoors, and the second-best clearance in the world outdoors this season.
HUSKIES SPLIT WITH COUGS IN FINAL HUSKY STADIUM DUAL: The Husky men's track and field team was victorious over the rival Cougars on April 29 in the final UW-WSU dual meet ever to be held in Husky Stadium. Back in 1922, Washington handed Washington State a 93-38 defeat in the first dual meet held in the stadium; in 2011 it was an 83-80 victory for the Dawgs 91 years later. The Cougar women's team came out ahead in a 92-71 victory, although the Huskies got the individual win in 10 of the 19 events on the women's side, but could not overcome WSU's depth. Washington had a school record from junior Jordan Carlson in the 400-meter dash, as she won in a time of 54.18 seconds to surpass Lauran Dignam's mark of 54.31 from 2006. For the men, Angus Taylor picked up the victory in the hammer with a best of 196-6, and former Cougar Conner Larned was second at 177-7. Washington swept the javelin with three season-bests. Jimmy Brookman set a major PR with a mark of 227-2 on his first attempt, a 12-foot best. Joe Zimmerman tossed 239-9, and Kyle Nielsen was right behind at 239-2. In the steeplechase, Michael Miller Jr. came in with the No. 3 time in the field, and WSU's Andrew Gonzales was the only entry to have broken nine minutes, but Miller held strong down the final stretch to get the victory in a 12-second personal-best of 8:57.32. Washington's sprinters then went to work in what would be a banner day for the young group. The 4x1 relay (McNeal, Alaka, Dunn, Hamilton) ran a season-best time of 39.93 for the win. That time ranks seventh in school history and is the second-fastest in the Pac-10 this year. McNeal provided the next big highlight, outdueling multiple All-American Jeshua Anderson in the 400-meter dash in 46.63. Alaka defended his 100m title in 10.44, and Alaka and McNeal would come back later in the day for a critical one-two finish in the 200-meter dash. Alaka won in a season-best 21.00 seconds with McNeal just a split second back at 21.02, a new PR which ranks him ninth on the UW Top-10 list. More wins came from Robby Fegles in the pole vault (16-5 1/4) and a key late win from Colton Tully-Doyle in the 3k. Senior Cameron Elisara clinched the win with a season-best shot put of 54-feet, 5.25-inches to take second despite having recently suffered a serious hip flexor injury. The women got an early lead with a win from Elisa Bryant in the women's hammer throw. Mel Lawrence competed for the first time in 2011 indoors or outdoors, and the five-time All-American picked up the steeplechase win in 10:27.66. Justine Johnson took the win at 1,500-meters and Megan Goethals won the 3k. Sophomore Logan Miller set a new outdoor career-best in a women's pole vault victory, as she cleared 13-0 ¾ to become the eighth Husky to get over 13-feet outdoors in school history. Freshman Kayla Stueckle rolled to a big season-best to upset a trio of favored Cougars and win the 400m hurdles in 59.84 seconds. Dominique Lauderdale came through with a dominant win in the 100-meters, as she ran 11.70. She was back on the track less than an hour later to capture the 200-meter dash in a new PR of 24.16 seconds. Washington's last big point swing came with a triple jump sweep, as Shaniae Lakes, Taylor Nichols, and Alana Alexander went 1-2-3.
FIELD EVENT WINS HIGHLIGHT OREGON RELAYS: The Husky track and field squads wrapped up their second trip to Hayward Field this season, leaving the Oregon Relays with a number of personal and season-best marks. UW had a couple big crunch time performances from sophomores Shaniae Lakes and Joe Zimmerman in the women's triple jump and men's javelin, respectively, to close the meet on a big upswing. Lakes had not hit the 41-foot mark since her freshman year. Through five jumps on Saturday, her outdoor season best was 38-10 1/2. But on her final run, Lakes hit her marks, and flew to a new career-best of 41-3 1/4 to take the victory. Not to be overlooked was the third-place finish of redshirt freshman Alana Alexander, as she also set a major PR, going 39-8 1/2 on her fifth attempt. Zimmerman got the line he wanted on his sixth and final javelin throw. Through five throws he had a best of 220-6, but on his final toss he fired the spear 231-7, a season-best by 10-feet, to place second overall. Senior Scott Roth easily won his fourth straight pole vault dating back to the NCAA Indoor Championships. Roth cleared 18-0 1/2 on his second attempt, the fourth straight meet he's been over 18-feet. He then had the bar raised all the way up to 19-0 3/4 to take another shot at the Pac-10 record for the second week in a row, but that bar eluded him again today on three attempts. In the men's 800-meter final, junior Ryan Styrk and redshirt freshman Brad Whitley both posted season-bests. Styrk was fifth in a time of 1:50.04, while Whitley was close behind in sixth-place in 1:51.39. In the second heat, freshman Kyle Blume of Seattle got the victory in 1:53.19, another season-best. Also running well outside his usual comfort zone was James Alaka. The London native moved up to run an open 400-meters for the first time in his college career, and posted a very solid 48.06 second time to take second overall. On Friday, freshman Kasen Covington had a season-best 51-foot triple jump to place third, though it was wind-aided. In the women's discus throw, junior Elisa Bryant was third with a season-best of 157-7 coming on her fourth throw. The field in the men's 1,500-meter run was very strong, but the times in the end weren't especially fast, as only one runner went under 3:45. Senior Colton Tully-Doyle led three Huskies across the line in fifth place in 3:49.63. Gareth Gilna and Ryan Soberanis were sixth and seventh.
ROTH'S RECORD HEADLINES BIG WEEK AT MT. SAC: A big week for the Huskies at the Mt. SAC Relays was capped off by a school record vault from senior Scott Roth on April 16, as he took the U.S. lead with a clearance of 18-9 1/4. Roth broke American record-holder Brad Walker's outdoor mark of 18-6 1/2. Roth got to his record height with no misses and needed just one vault to clear 18-9 1/4 as well. Despite being the only college athlete in a field of mostly professionals, Roth was the only vaulter over at 18-9 1/4. He had the bar raised to 19-0 3/4, which would have been a new Pac-10 record, but was unable to make his three tries. Still, Roth's clearance ranks him second in the world so far this year outdoors. That effort was just one of nearly 20 PRs by Husky athletes at the three-day meet. Saturday, Angus Taylor PR'd in the hammer with a mark of 201-feet, 2-inches, and James Alaka shaved down his season-best at 100m to a wind-legal 10.34 seconds as the top collegiate finisher, fifth overall, in the invitational. The Husky 4x100-meter relay also got its second straight win, taking the Olympic Development Elite section in 40.30 seconds. Friday PRs came from Justine Johnson in the 1,500-meters (4:22.57), and James Cameron at 1,500m (3:44.90), while Joey Bywater (SB 3:46.14), junior Ryan Soberanis (PR 3:47.69), and junior Charlie Williams (SB 3:52.25) all ran well. For the first time in five years, the Huskies have a women's sprinter under the 55-second mark for the quarter mile. Jordan Carlson has battled through injuries early in her career to come on strong in 2011, and the Spokane native broke through with a PR in the 400 of 54.74 seconds. That's the best time by a Husky since 2006 and ties for seventh on the school's Top-10 list. Freshman Michelle Fero also ran a PR of 56.28 seconds. Continuing a big day for the women's sprinters was senior Dominique Lauderdale, who won her 200-meter heat in a big PR of 24.24 seconds, the fastest time by a Husky since Chelsie Pentz in 2000, jumping Lauderdale up to sixth on the all-time list. Shortly thereafter, freshman Maurice McNeal made a big splash in the 400-meter dash, winning his heat by more than a second and placing third out of more than 40 entries in 46.86 seconds. In the javelin, Kyle Nielsen had a season-best toss of 234-feet, 6-inches. Joe Zimmerman added five feet to his season-best with a throw of 221-10. In the women's javelin, Amanda Peterson had a solid follow-up to her school record debut. She threw 165-4 on her fourth attempt to win her flight and place fifth overall as the top collegian. The Huskies continued to accumulate the PRs in the jumps. In the women's triple jump, Taylor Nichols went 40-feet, 7-inches, wind-aided. Then freshman A.J. Maricich cleared 6-10 ¾ to take fifth in the men's high jump with his best outdoor clearance so far this season. Back on the track, UW's top two finishers in the men's and women's 400-meter hurdles had their fastest times of the year. Dan Sanders ran 53.03 and Kayla Stueckle stopped the clock at 1:01.40. The final Husky in action late Friday was Lindsay Flanagan who went under 16:30 in the 5k for the first time at 16:28.86. In the women's hammer throw, Elisa Bryant had a season-best throw of 180-7.
ALAKA, PETERSON LEAD DAWGS AT PEPSI TEAM INVITE: Six event victories and a new school record wrapped a big day for the Huskies as they completed their first scored meet of the outdoor season at the Pepsi Team Invitational at Oregon's Hayward Field on April 9. Three wins for sprinter James Alaka and a school record for newcomer Amanda Peterson helped set the tone for the early season tune-up. On the men's side, the 10th-ranked Ducks got the win with 195 points, followed by ninth-ranked Nebraska with 181. The Huskies were third with 159 points, outpacing eighth-ranked Stanford which had 121. Third-ranked Oregon took the women's team title with 205 points, with Washington coming in fourth with 112. One of the first events of the day was the women's javelin, where it took all of two throws for junior Amanda Peterson to become the new Washington school record-holder. Peterson threw 168-feet, 5-inches on her first attempt, then fired the spear 174-2 on her second toss to set the school record, previously held by Megan Spriesterbach who went 173-7 in 2004. Washington's five other event wins came on the men's side, including another in the javelin, as two-time All-American Kyle Nielsen got his senior season off to a solid start with a toss of 233-10 to get the win. Jimmy Brookman also had a PR of 215-9 and All-American Joe Zimmerman debuted with a 216-4 toss to take fourth. Three more wins came on the heels of sprinter James Alaka. He was first at 100m in 10.53 seconds into a headwind, while junior Ryan Hamilton was third in a time of 10.99. Alaka also rolled to an easy win at 200-meters, clocking 21.18. UW clocked a very impressive 40.24-seconds win in the men's 4x100-meter relay, with Alaka on the second leg. Freshman Maurice McNeal led off, then Alaka handed to Colton Dunn who passed to Hamilton on the anchor. The final Husky victory lap was run by senior Scott Roth, who tied his own meet record with a clearance of 18-0 ½ in the pole vault. In the steeplechase, sophomores James Cameron and Michael Miller went second and third. Cameron, an All-American indoors in the mile, clocked 9:02.83, a huge 36 second improvement over his previous steeple from a year ago. More PRs were had throughout the field events. Sophomore Julian Bardwell had a new best long jump of 23-5 ¼, and freshman Kasen Covington went 49-9 ¾ to take fourth in the triple jump. Conner Larned extended his best in the discus out to 172-10 to place fourth. Angus Taylor was second in the hammer, tossing 195-6. Nearly pulling off the upset of the day was freshman Katie Flood, who simply continues to roll at any track over any distance, as she took second in the 1,500-meters in 4:18.80. Flood nearly chased down NCAA indoor mile champion Jordan Hasay of Oregon, who held on for the win in 4:18.61. Maybe the biggest PR of the day came from Laura Schmitt, who sliced more than five seconds off her lifetime 800-meter best to run 2:10.05 and place sixth. Also PRing was Lindsay Flanagan, who lowered her career-best 5,000-meter time with a third-place finish in 16:34.11. In the sprints, Dominique Lauderdale and the rest of the field was slowed by the windy conditions, but she still placed third in the 100-meters in a time of 11.86 seconds. Jordan Carlson PR'd in 55.08 to take third in the 400m.
SPRINTERS START FAST AT STANFORD INVITE: The Huskies started the outdoor track season with a bang from their top two sprinters, James Alaka and Dominique Lauderdale, who each won the 100-meter dashes at the Stanford Invitational, held March 25-26. After doing short so well, Washington went long, as senior Colton Tully-Doyle and sophomore James Cameron ran the second and third-fastest 5,000-meters in school history. Washington made its mark early in the sprints. Alaka made his season debut in style, as he won the men's 100-meters in 10.37 seconds, edging out pro runner Josh Norman. It's the fifth time Alaka has gone under 10.40 seconds in his Husky career. Lauderdale ran to a big PR to start her outdoor season, winning in 11.54 seconds, well under her previous career-best of 11.77 seconds. Lauderdale's time would tie for third-best in school history but it was wind-aided. Later in the evening it was time for the distance runners to dig in. Husky freshman Megan Goethals crushed the UW freshman record at 5,000-meters, as she placed fourth in the top heat in a time of 16:06.64, surpassing Anita Campbell's 16:29.91 freshman mark from 2006. That ranks eighth on the Husky top-10 list. The top heat of the men's 5,000-meters was up next, and three UW men broke the 14-minute barrier. Tully-Doyle posted the number two 5k time in Washington history at 13:47.25. Right behind Tully-Doyle was Cameron, who showed his versatility today by stopping the clock in 13:51.83, which now ranks him third right behind Tully-Doyle and record-holder David Bazzi (13:40.61). Also getting into the mix was junior Max O'Donoghue-McDonald, who set a 20-second personal-best with a time of 13:59.82. Sophomore Lindsay Flanagan became just the fifth Husky woman ever to go under 34 minutes in the 10k, running 33:42.50 to jump up to fifth in school history. Jordan Carlson had a big PR in the 400-meters of 55.24. Sophomore Justine Johnson had a good opening at 1,500-meters, as she clocked 4:26.80, just a couple seconds off her PR. On Saturday, freshman Maurice McNeal posted a speedy debut at 200-meters, winning his section in a time of 21.23 seconds. That time would have qualified for NCAA West Prelims a year ago. Husky sophomore Colton Dunn was fourth in that same heat, running a big PR of 21.74. The top Husky men's relays also both placed second overall. At 800-meters, redshirt freshman Brad Whitley blew about six seconds off his outdoor 800-meter PR, as he led UW with a time of 1:51.94. Leading the throws was junior Angus Taylor, who opened up in the hammer throw with a best toss of 192-feet, 11-inches on his fifth attempt. Freshman Kasen Covington placed fourth in the triple jump with a best of 49-2 ¼ which came on his sixth and final jump.
2011 INDOOR IN REVIEW: Washington's 2011 indoor season had a little bit of everything, from veteran seniors going out on a high note, to impressive returns to form from familiar faces, and several new faces bursting onto the national scene. The highlight of the season was senior pole vaulter Scott Roth, who successfully defended his NCAA Indoor title with a gritty performance at nationals in College Station, Texas. Roth suffered a hamstring injury early in the season and had not competed in a month by the time NCAAs rolled around, but he was able to regain his form and won the title with a clearance of 18-0 1/2. He becomes just the sixth Husky track athlete to own multiple NCAA titles, and was the first repeat winner since fellow vaulter Brad Walker won the indoor titles in 2003-04. Roth earned the sixth All-America honor of his career, the most by a vaulter and fifth-most in school history. Also earning All-America First Team honors at NCAAs were sophomores James Cameron and Jeremy Taiwo. Cameron capped an incredible indoor season with an eighth-place mile finish, while Taiwo placed eighth in the heptathlon. Cameron punched his ticket to NCAAs by running the second-best mile in school history at 3:58.51, the fourth sub-four minute mile in UW history. Taiwo raised his own heptathlon school record to 5,780 points at nationals. The Husky men posted 12 points to tie for 18th, and while the women did not score, they were well represented by freshmen Katie Flood and Megan Goethals. The young distance runners were the only two freshmen in the 3,000-meter field. Flood placed 10th and Goethals was 13th, earning both of them All-America Second Team honors. Washington had an incredible 35 new marks written into its indoor Top-10 list, with another school record coming from senior Colton Tully-Doyle in the 3,000m (7:53.13). Tully-Doyle would place 18th at NCAAs, and senior Ryan Vu also earned All-America Second Team honors with an 11th-place finish in the pole vault in his final UW competition. Washington's own Dempsey Indoor was once again the place to be for distance runners, as a majority of the NCAA qualifiers posted their top times in Seattle. Looking at the Top-20 on the men's national list from 800-meters through 5,000-meters, exactly 40 of the 80 best times in the four distance events came from the Dempsey, while the Dempsey accounted for 29 of the 80 best marks in the same distances on the women's side.
ROTH'S TITLE HIGHLIGHTS NCAA INDOORS: Seven Huskies qualified for the NCAA Indoor Championships, hosted this year by Texas A&M in College Station. As always, the meet brought some highs and lows, but nobody went higher than senior Scott Roth, who successfully defended his indoor pole vault national title. Despite not competing in a month while rehabbing a hamstring injury, Roth's experience proved too much to overcome. Despite some early struggles, which included a third attempt at 17-6 1/2, Roth got on a roll with a first attempt clearance at 17-10 1/2 and again at 18-0 1/2. That first jump make proved critical, as only one other vaulter made that bar, and did so on his second attempt, giving Roth the tiebreaker. Ben Peterson of Minnesota was unable to clear another bar, so Roth collected his second national championship, becoming one of just six Huskies all-time to win multiple NCAA titles. Also scoring for the Huskies was sophomores James Cameron and Jeremy Taiwo. Seeded just 12th entering the meet, Cameron qualified for the mile final, and ran to eighth in a time of 4:01.88. Taiwo also finished eighth in his second career NCAA Indoor heptathlon competition. He raised his school record to 5,780, and had PRs in the 60m dash, 60m hurdles, long jump, and 1,000m run, but subpar showings in the shot put and pole vault kept Taiwo from contending for the title. Still, he became the first Husky to ever score in the heptathlon at nationals. Senior Ryan Vu competed for the final time as a Husky, tying for 11th in the pole vault with a 17-2 3/4 clearance, and senior Colton Tully-Doyle was 18th in the 3,000-meter final, struggling in a congested field that knocked him off stride. The women were represented by freshmen Katie Flood and Megan Goethals in the 3,000-meters. Both ran well as the only two freshmen in the field, and finished just out of scoring position, Flood placing 10th and Goethals 13th. The Husky men's 12 points earned them a tie for 18th in the team standings. The 12 points had only been surpassed five times since 1965 and Roth's title was the ninth indoor title in school history. Roth, Cameron, and Taiwo were named First Team All-Americans by the USTFCCCA. Vu, Flood, and Goethals earned Second Team honors and Tully-Doyle was an honorable mention.