Friday, May 15, 2009

PAC-10 track & field championships this weekend in Eugene...

Washington State University and the University of Washington make the trek to Eugene for the Pacific-10 Conference Track & Field Championships, Saturday and Sunday, May 16-17, at the University of Oregon's Hayward Field.

Washington State returns two defending champions in Jeshua Anderson (400m hurdles - 2008) and two-time winner Sara Trané (left/photo by Paul Merca) in the steeplechase, while the University of Washington has defending champ Katie Follett in the women's 1500, and two of their four runners from last year's winning 4 x 100 meter relay team in Jordan Boase and Joe Turner.

Boase leads the conference in both the 200- and 400-meter dashes and is entered in both. Last year he took second in the 400 and ran the lead-off leg on UW's title winning 4x100m relay. Also entering as the favorite based on best marks is sophomore pole vaulter Scott Roth. He is the only conference vaulter to have cleared 18-feet this year, though competition could come from his own teammates, as senior Jared O'Connor and junior Ryan Vu have both cleared 17-6 1/2 this year, which ties for the fourth-best mark in the Pac-10.

Anderson (400H), and Trent Arrivey (HJ) are the Cougs most likely to contend for individual conference titles, while two-time defending Pac-10 steeple champ Sara Trané may face a battle against the Huskies' Mel Lawrence and USC's Zsofia Erdelyi.

As usual, the Pac-10 is loaded with teams ranked among the Top-25 by the USTFCCCA. On the men's side, Oregon is the nation's top-ranked team and the defending Pac-10 Champions. Arizona State ranks sixth, followed by Stanford (10th), Washington (14th), USC (16th), California (17th), and Washington State (21st). Oregon also is the highest-ranked women's team at No. 2, with fifth-ranked USC and seventh-ranked Arizona State also in the Top-10. UCLA (13th), Stanford (15th), and Washington (17th) also dot the upper echelon of the rankings.

FOX Sports Net will air a two-hour tape delayed show starting Thursday, May 21. Barry Tompkins and Dwight Stones will call the action, while color commentary will be provided by Tom Feuer. Lindsay Soto will provide additional commentary from the infield. Check the local listings for the airing dates of the championships on your FOX Sports Net regional carrier.

Also, please note that our media partner, runnerspace.com has a special page set up for the Pac-10 track & field championships, which you can access here...

NOTE: The University of Washington, Washington State University, the University of Oregon, and the Pac-10 Conference all contributed to this report.

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