Saturday, January 31, 2009

Jenny Barringer steals show at UW Invitational...

Colorado's Jenny Barringer (left, competing at the US Olympic Trials/photo by Paul Merca) stole the show, as the reigning American record holder in the 3000-meter steeplechase and 2008 US Olympian won the women's 3000 meter run in a Dempsey Indoor record and world-leading time of 8:53.88 to highlight the two-day UW Invitational.

Washington's women's distance runners continued to excel and freshman Jeremy Taiwo set a new school record in the heptathlon as the two-day UW Invitational came to an end Saturday at the Dempsey Indoor facility. Husky track and field athletes combined to hit eight NCAA qualifying marks, and picked up ten total for the weekend.

Five members of UW's NCAA Champion women's cross country team chalked up NCAA provisional qualifying marks in the mile and the 3,000-meters. Junior Katie Follett took second in the mile in a time of 4:41.73, less than 24 hours after she anchored UW's NCAA-leading distance medley relay. Close behind Follett were junior Kailey Campbell, also a DMR runner Friday night, in 4:45.29, and redshirt freshman Mel Lawrence, who ran 4:46.07 to go under the provisional qualifying mark in her first collegiate track outing.

In the wake of Barringer's outstanding performance in the 3000, which included two more NCAA automatic marks, and fourteen more provisional times, personal bests were set by junior Anita Campbell (9:24.45) and sophomore Lauren Saylor (9:31.24).

The men's heptathlon concluded with freshman Jeremy Taiwo from Newport High School scoring a Washington school record 5,317 points to take fifth place and earn himself a provisional qualifier. His highest-scoring events came in the 60m hurdles which he ran in 8.47 seconds and the 1000-meter run, completed in 2-minutes, 41.76 seconds. Oregon's Ashton Eaton ran away with the overall victory. The 2008 NCAA decathlon champion broke the Dempsey record with 6,174 points.

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