Saturday, March 15, 2014

Fricker of SPU and Fettig of Central Washington earn NCAA D2 All-America honors...

WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina--Seattle Pacific's McKayla Fricker (above/photo courtesy USTFCCCA) made a big move in the final two laps on Saturday afternoon, reeling in everyone except top seed and favorite Shawnee Carnett of Concord University to finish second in the 800 meters at the NCAA Division II Indoor Track & Field Championships.

The Seattle Pacific senior came across the finish line at JDL Fast Track in 2 minutes, 9.25 seconds. Carnett, also a senior, clocked 2:08.76.

The finish for Fricker was her best ever. She was fifth as a sophomore in 2012 in Mankato, Minn., and fourth last year in Birmingham, Ala.

Fricker and Carnett both were running near the back of the pack through the first half of the four-lap race on the 200-meter flat surface, while Monique Thompson of Lincoln (Mo.) set the pace.

Fricker and Carnett started making a move midway through the third lap, and by the start of the bell lap, Carnett had surged in front, with Fricker running third. Carnett opened up a gap, but Fricker, having taken over second place, kept closing. Carnett had just enough left at the finish line to fend off Fricker's closing kick.

Fricker earned All-America status for the third year in a row, and now has earned five career All-America awards.

Another athlete earning All-America honors was Central Washington's Tayler Fettig, who finished sixth in the women's high jump.

Fettig cleared 1.73 meters (5-feet, 8-inches) on the day, just a shade off of her personal best of 1.77 meters (5-feet, 9 ¾-inches) she cleared at the Great Northwest Athletic Conference Indoor Championships last month.

"She jumped really well," CWU jumps coach Tony Monroe said. "We thought she could be anywhere between third on down. We're really excited to have an All-American on our team this year."

Fettig got on a roll early, making the first three heights on her first try.

"We wanted to get no worse than sixth," Monroe said. "She threw the hammer down this season, and making All-American, you can see there is a whole new confidence in her for the outdoor season.

Western Washington's Frank Catelli finished 17th in the shot put, with a toss of 52-4 1/2 (15.96m).

St. Augustine's won the men's team title with 84.5 points, while Adams State won the women's crown with 67 points.


NOTE:  The sports information offices of Seattle Pacific, Central Washington, and Western Washington University contributed to this report.

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