Huskies Roll To Team And Individual Sundodger Wins
Sept. 18, 2010
(UW videos to come soon)
SEATTLE - Lindsay Flanagan and Max O'Donoghue-McDonald fired up the hometown fans with individual wins that also led the Husky women's and men's cross country squads to the team titles at the annual Sundodger Invitational in Lincoln Park today. Both the third-ranked Husky women and the Husky men dominated their races, a good first step towards the goal of the NCAA meet in November, with a stop back here in Seattle for the Pac-10 Championships on October 30.
The women's 6,000-meter invitational was up first at 10:25 a.m. this morning. Husky freshman Megan Goethals, the 2009 Gatorade National Cross Country Athlete of the Year, went out hard from the start in her first college 6k race. Flanagan and senior Kailey Campbell stayed close behind early on. Midway through the race, Natasha Wodak, a former Simon Fraser standout now running unattached, took over the lead, but by the time the runners emerged from the trees it was Flanagan who had opened up a wide lead over the field, and she got the victory in 20-minutes, 34-seconds, the eighth-fastest time ever run on the course.
"I just wanted to stay with the team and run with whoever was up there," said the sophomore Flanagan. "I feel like I had a good summer and I just said ... stay with them. The last lap, we work hard to get through that last (thousand meters) so I just thought about that and finishing hard."
Flanagan was 10th at this race a year ago, and today she cut more than 40-seconds off her time from 2009. Goethals held on well for a fourth-place finish in her UW debut, clocking 20:54, while Campbell led a trio of Huskies across the line in sixth-place at 21:07. Another new face, freshman Liberty Miller, was seventh in her collegiate debut, and sophomore Allison Linnell came in eighth to cap the Husky scoring at 22 points, just one point shy of last year's record-low 21 point win.
11th-place went to sophomore Kayla Evans, who knocked a full minute off her time from last season, running 21:39. Evans' former Bellarmine Prep squad ran later in the day in the high school invite. The PRs continued to come down the UW lineup, as redshirt freshman Grace Green took 14th in an eight-second PR, redshirt frosh Justine Johnson was 20 seconds faster to place 16th in 21:57, and another redshirt freshman, Alison Ponce, was 21st with a 42-second year-to-year improvement. In the midst of those returners was UW's third true freshman, Mackenzie Carter, who just missed breaking 22-minutes in her first-ever 6,000-meters, running 22:00 for 18th-place.
Final team scores had UW with 22 points, Idaho with 72, Pepperdine with 99, Gonzaga with 108, Nevada with 152. It is the fourth-straight win for the Husky women in their home meet, a streak which was matched 30 minutes later by the Husky men.
Junior Cameron Quackenbush took the lead out early in the men's 8,000-meter run, much like he did in UW's opening dual meet win against the Cougars. O'Donoghue-McDonald and sophomore Joey Bywater stayed close on his heels. Course record-holder Paul Limpf, formerly of Eastern Washington, made a move late that O'Donoghue-McDonald was able to counter, and the Husky junior from Seattle Prep outkicked Limpf and Chris Reed down the stretch to win by one second in 24:03. Quackenbush was close behind in fifth-place in 24:10 and Bywater took ninth in 24:20.
The win was sweet for O'Donoghue-McDonald, who at this time one year ago was running for the first time in a year after injuries wiped out his 2008-09 season. Healthy and with a full summer of training in the bank, he was 30 seconds faster today than a year ago. Adding his name to the list of UW Sundodger champs meant a lot for the Seattle native.
"I knew I had this year and next year (to win this race), so it's good to get it off my shoulders this year. I was taking a little pre-race bathroom break and I just smiled to myself, thanking the Lord that I'm back racing again. I'm just happy to be back with the team, feeling good, being able to be a good leader. It was a beautiful day," said O'Donoghue-McDonald.
The lone senior on the Husky roster, Jordan Swarthout of Olympia, ran well in his final Sundodger, taking 12th in 24:30 today, followed closely by redshirt freshman Gareth Gilna, who rounded out UW's scoring five with a 13th-place finish in 24:32. Three more Huskies crossed as a pack with top-20 finishes, led by sophomore James Cameron, who was 17th, redshirt freshman Taylor Carlson in 18th, and junior David McCary in 19th-place. Carlson saw the biggest improvement, going from 49th-place last year, and slicing nearly 90-seconds off his time from a year ago.
Aaron Beattie was the Dawgs' top freshman finisher on the men's side, as he was 21st in 24:52, competing unattached. Sophomore Greg Drosky also saw an improvement of a full minute, crossing in 24th position.
Washington's 27-point final score matched the 2003 squad for the lowest winning total in meet history. Southern Oregon was second with 75 points, Idaho was third with 78, fourth went to Gonzaga with 140, and Western Oregon was fifth with 142.
The Huskies next outing will be in two weeks at the Notre Dame Invitational, where they captured both team titles last season. The race is set for Friday, October 1, in South Bend, Indiana.