Thursday, April 11, 2013

Worthen sets three PRs and ties fourth to lead MONDO Mid-Major Challenge heptathion...

SACRAMENTO--After one day of competition at the MONDO Mid-Major Challenge heptathlon at Hornet Stadium on the campus of Sacramento State University, Seattle Pacific senior Ali Worthen (above/photo by Paul Merca) leads the competition with a first day score of 3301 points, while setting three personal bests, and tying a fourth.

Competing against an invitational field comprised of Division I athletes, Worthen, who hails from Coos Bay, Oregon, placed second in the 100 meter hurdles by running 14.16 seconds for 956 points, then got another second in the high jump, clearing 5-7 3/4 (1.72m) for 879 points, tying her previous PR.

In the shot put, Worthen was fourth with a toss of 35-1 3/4 (10.71m) for 576 points, then finished her day by winning the 200 in 24.96 for 890 points.

Teammate Katy Gross sits in fifth with a first day score of 2941 points, as she ran 14.77 (872 points), high jumped 5-3 (1.60m) for 736 points, threw the shot 36-10 1/4 (11.23m) for 610 points, and finished the day with a 26.87 clocking in the 200 for 723 points.

Meanwhile, the rest of the Seattle Pacific squad, along with teams from Seattle University, Gonzaga, Eastern Washington, and Washington State, along with Central Washington and Saint Martin's will head to Spokane to compete in the annual WAR meet Saturday starting at 9am at Spokane Falls Community College.

This scoring meet pits the teams against each other, as well as schools from Oregon, Idaho and Montana.  Then, in a Washington-vs.-the-Region format, the team scores from the nine Washington schools will be totaled – men only, women only, and combined – and matched against the team scores from the 10 non-Washington schools to determine the winner.

The other big meet in the state of Washington this weekend is the Ralph Vernacchia Team Meet Friday and Saturday at Civic Stadium, hosted by Western Washington University.

Besides Western, the field includes British Columbia, Central Washington, Eastern Washington, Everett CC, Green River CC, Kajaks, Northwest, Ocean Athletics, Olympic CC, Saint Martin's, Simon Fraser, Skagit Valley CC, Trinity Lutheran and Washington. Also scheduled for Friday (12:30 p.m.) and Saturday (8:30 a.m.) is the WWU Combined Events Meet.

Action gets underway Friday at 5pm, and resumes Saturday at 10am.

On behalf of USA Track & Field and the U.S. Olympic Committee, USATF CEO Max Siegel made the announcement Thursday on the steps of the Oregon state capitol. He was joined in making the announcement by Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber, University of Oregon President Mike Gottfredson, Oregon State Senate President Peter Courtney and TrackTown USA President Vin Lananna.

“Eugene set the bar high for what it means to host an Olympic Trials in 2008, and in 2012 they exceeded anyone’s expectations with a truly spectacular, world-class event,” said Siegel. “Local and state organizers cater not only to our athletes, but to track fans as well, and they have redefined the fan experience. As our sport continues to grow nationally, we are pleased to return to TrackTown in 2016.”

Courtesy of, here is the video announcing the return of the biggest meet on US soil to the Willamette Valley.

Finally, University of Washington track & field hall of famer Brian Sternberg will be honored later this month at the Penn Relays with a permanent spot on its Wall of Honor.  Sternberg set the World Record in the pole vault on three occasions, the first of which came at the 1963 Penn Relays.

Sternberg came to Philadelphia for the 1963 Penn Relays and set a pair of meet records. His clearance of 16-1 won the competition, but his 16-5 established a World Record. His Penn Relays record lasted until 1971.

NOTE:  The sports information offices at Seattle Pacific, Western Washington University, and USA Track & Field contributed to this report.

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