Sunday, April 11, 2010

Weekend roundup: Dawgs third & fourth at Pepsi; Layman wins at RJ/JJK Invite...

Washington men third; Husky women fourth at Pepsi Team Challenge

The University of Washington came home with three individual titles at Saturday's Pepsi Team Challenge hosted by the University of Oregon at Historic Hayward Field in Eugene.

The Oregon men and women, ranked third and second in the NCAA, captured both team titles, with the defending NCAA Champion Aggies taking second on both sides. Washington was third on the men's side ahead of Illinois and Missouri. In the women's standings, Missouri placed third and the Huskies a close fourth.

Victories came from a trio of All-Americans. Senior Katie Follett ran away from a trio of Ducks to win the women's 1,500-meters by nearly three seconds. Follett finished in 4:17.02, with second-place Nicole Blood of UO crossing in 4:19.57.

"It was great to come to Hayward and get a win under my belt. I wish I could have run a little faster, but overall I think it went well coming in and getting a win," Follett said. "The atmosphere here is awesome and I love going head to head with the Oregon girls. It's always good to see some friendly faces after having run against each other so often."

Here's the video of that race, courtesy of media partner

Junior All-American Brooke Pighin easily handled the field in the women's javelin, throwing a season-best 166-6 that was six-feet further than her season-opener last week at the Texas Relays.

The third win came from the closest thing to a sure-bet at the meet, as junior Scott Roth opened up his outdoor season with yet another win in the men's pole vault. This was Roth's first action since winning the NCAA Indoor Championships in March. He cleared 18-0 ½ on his first try, then raised the bar to 18-6 ¾ which would have been a quarter-inch above Brad Walker's outdoor school record. Roth was unable to clear this time around but still pocketed nine points and was pleased with the day.

"I'm pleased with it here (at Hayward Field), it's awesome. Everyone is so supportive of each other and all the fans were cheering for me, it was really nice," said Roth. "I changed my steps today, which meant that I had to adjust every jump today, but I was very pleased with how I adjusted on my steps."

Shaniae Lakes of Richland, Wash. broke the freshman record in the triple jump, with a new lifetime-best mark of 41-0 ¼. That was more than a foot past previous record-holder Fahern Thomas who jumped 39-11 ½ in 1992. Lakes leaps up to third on the UW all-time Top-10 as well, and is now one of just three Husky women to ever triple jump 41-feet.

The 100-meter dash turned into a British invasion with talented Husky frosh James Alaka (above/photo courtesy University of Washington) going head-to-head with Texas A&M's Gerald Phiri, both of whom hail from London where they were good friends and competitors. Alaka ran 10.32 seconds to take second, edged by Phiri in 10.30. Still, Alaka's blazing run ranks him fifth in school history, and was the fastest by a Husky since Hooker's heyday ended in 2001.

Anna Layman wins 800 at Rafer Johnson/Jackie Joyner-Kersee Invite...

In Los Angeles, Anna Layman, a Washington State junior, won the women's 800m run invitational race Saturday afternoon at the Rafer Johnson/Jackie Joyner-Kersee Invitational Meet at Drake Stadium on the UCLA campus.

Layman, an All-American from Spokane Valley, Wash., ran a season-best time of 2-minutes, 5.70 seconds, less than two seconds off her lifetime-best time of 2:04.03.

J Hopkins (sophomore, Everett) ran a season-best time in the 400m hurdles invitational race of 52.71, for fourth place. In the same race, freshman Dana Wells (Tieton, Wash.) ran a PR time of 53.64 for sixth place.

In the men's 100m dash invitational race, Greg Hornsby (freshman, Moreno Valley, Calif.) finished seventh in a time of 10.79, with teammates Brett Blanshan (freshman, Selah, Wash.) 10th in a time of 10.92, and Nate Washington (junior, Everett) finished 11th in a time of 10.93.

The WSU men's 4x400m relay team of Wells, Hopkins, Washington and Hornsby ran a time of 3:16.41 for third place.

Veronica Elseroad-Wall (junior, Casper, Wyo.) reached fifth place in the women's 400m hurdles invitational race with a time of 1:01.41.

Many of the state's colleges sent a bevy of competitors to Spokane for the Washington vs Oregon, Idaho, and Montana III meet at Spokane Falls Community College Saturday.

The complete link to the results can be accessed here.

Finally, here's a link to the results and recap of the Ralph Vernacchia Invitational Track and Field meet on Friday at Civic Stadium in Bellingham, hosted by Western Washington University.

The meet was highlighted by pole vaulter Ryan Brown's pole vault mark of 16-10 3/4, which earned him an automatic qualifying mark to the NCAA Division II championships.

NOTE: The University of Washington and Washington State University contributed to this report.

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