Saturday, April 28, 2012

Washington women, Washington State men win annual cross-state dual meet...

PULLMAN--True to the pre-meet form charts, the Washington women and Washington State men earned team victories in the annual UW/WSU dual track & field meet on a clear day at Mooberry Track on the campus of Washington State University.

For the Dawgs, the 89-74 victory marked the first time they had won in Pullman since 2004.

In contrast, the Cougar men used a sweep of the penultimate running event, the men's 3000 (photo of Jono Lafler, Andrew Kimpel & Drew Jordan by Paul Merca) to clinch a hard-fought 87-76 victory over the Huskies, avenging last year's defeat in Seattle.


The Washington women swept the 800-meters, 1,500-meters, and the 3,000-meters, and capped things off with a 4x400-meter relay win. Meet records were set in the 400-meter dash by senior Jordan Carlson and junior Shaniae Lakes in the triple jump. Carlson once again smashed her school record, the third-straight race she has broken it, this time taking off more than half a second with a time of 53.15. Lakes set a new PR with a jump of 41-4 ½ (12.61m) on her sixth and final attempt, tying for the No. 2 mark in school history.

Megan Goethals took home two wins in the 1500 (4:29.86) and 3000 (9:31.91), as the Huskies dominated every distance race from 800 up, conceding points to the Cougars only in the steeple--that being a second from Ruby Roberts (10:33.84) and a third from Caroline Austin (10:48.49), behind UW frosh and world junior competitor Eleanor Fulton, running her first collegiate steeple (10:31.07).

Washington needed a strong start in the four field events before the first race if it wanted to walk out of Pullman with a win. The Huskies got wins from Logan Miller in the pole vault (13-1.75/4.01m), and Elisa Bryant (177-4/54.05m) in the hammer, with Miller having a close miss at a PR 14-1 1/4 (4.30m), a mark which would've been a B standard mark for the US Olympic Trials.

A key race was the women's 400, featuring Washington's Jordan Carlson and WSU's Shawna Fermin. Carlson was all business, shot out of the blocks to take control of the race from the start, and she maintained all the way to the finish, hammering her own school record once again in a new lifetime-best of 53.15.

One of the biggest wins of the day came from senior Kelly McNamee in the high jump. An event the Cougars were favored in, McNamee flipped the script with a season-best clearance of 5-8 ½ (1.74m) for the victory.


The Cougs got their third dual meet win of the season after sweeping UCLA & Tennessee last month in Los Angeles.

One of the biggest breakthroughs for the Cougs was pole vaulter Jake Baertlein, who was not pegged for a top 3 finish on the form charts.

The senior team captain soared to a personal-record height of 17-feet, 1 inch (5.21m) to grab the five first-place points for the Cougs, while pre-meet favorite and reigning US junior champ JJ Julifs of the Huskies was third at 16-9 1/4 (5.11m), the same height cleared by teammate Robby Feagles for second.

"Last week I was very close to a PR and so jumps Coach Matt McGee and I have been working out some kinks," Baertlein said. "Today was about a team performance and having the support of my team got me over 17-feet."

"Jake's performance today was a huge four-point swing for the Cougars at a time when we really needed it," Cougar Head Coach Rick Sloan said. "As our team captain, to jump his lifetime-best by nearly a foot and to win the competition was really special. The Huskies did a good job and competed well and almost made a challenge near the end. But I think the Cougar men's team as a whole did a nice job competing."

The tone for this meet was set early by Cougar steepler Andrew Gonzales, who took command on the final lap to beat Washington's Mike Miller, the defending champ in this meet, 9:02.19 to 9:03.20.

Washington wasn't going away, as they won the 4 x 1 in 40.23. Defending Pac 10 sprint champ James Alaka took both short sprints (10.39 & 20.89). and got some help in the 400 as Maurice McNeal, coming off an injury that required surgery, won in 47.15.

As expected, former US junior champ Joe Abbott of the Cougs won the 800 in 1:48.53.

With the Huskies sweeping the javelin and Joey Bywater winning the 1500 in 3:47.81 for the Dawgs, WSU's All-American Stephan Scott-Ellis won the long jump in 25-1 3/4 (7.66m). The move by the Cougs to have him run the 200 for the points almost backfired, as he finished a non-scoring fourth in 21.88, and finished second to the Huskies' Kasen Covington in the triple jump, as both jumped 50-3 1/4 (15.32m), with Covington having a better second jump.

With the 200 done, plus upset wins in the high jump by AJ Maricich at 6-11 (2.11m) and Covington in the triple jump, Washington needed a third place finish in the 3000 and a win in the 4 x 400 relay to win the meet.

Neither happened.

In the 3000, the Cougs got the sweep by Andrew Kimpel (8:18.10), Drew Jordan (8:20.89), and Jono Lafler (8:21.50) and ended all speculation as to the team outcome. WSU took an 82-76 lead and the five points from the last event of the day, the 4x400m relay, would not be enough for UW to win. The Cougar squad of Brandon Dawson, Greg Hornsby, Brett Blanshan and Jacob Sealby won the 1600m relay in 3:13.80.

Courtesy of Washington State University, here are video highlights of the meet:

Complete results of the meet are available here.

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

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