Monday, August 4, 2014

AROUND THE OVAL: Catching up with news from the weekend...

News has been a little slow over the last few days, with the end of the world junior championships in Eugene, and the Commonwealth Games the big international meet on the docket.

Here's what we have:

On August 1st, Auburn/Riverside alum Jordan McNamara (above/photo by Paul Merca) stormed the last 400 meters to win the Liberty Mile contested over the streets of downtown Pittsburgh in a time of 4:03.

The women's race saw Angela Bizzarri of the Brooks Beasts finish fourth in 4:34, as Gabe Grunewald took the win in 4:32.


In Glasgow, Scotland, Washington State alum Shawna Fermin ran the leadoff leg of Trinidad & Tobago's 4 x 400 meter relay that finished sixth in the finals at the Commonwealth Games on Saturday in 3:33.50, as Jamaica won in 3:23.82.

Results from the finals of the Commonwealth Games track & field competition are available here.

Across the state in Spokane, the city got its first sub-4 minute mile performance at the Spokane Summer Games on Saturday, as former Oregon standout AJ Acosta won the featured mile run in 3:58.07, ahead of Riley Masters from the Seattle-based Brooks Beasts, who ran 3:59.23.

In the men's pole vault, former BYU standout Victor Weirich 18-2 1/2 (5.55m), whle ex-Idaho standout Melinda Owen won the women's competition at 13-11 1/4 (4.25m) to beat Eastern Washington alum Keisa Monterola (13-5.25/4.10m).

Recent WSU grad Kyle Stevens, who finished third at the Pac-12 meet in May, won the men's javelin with a toss of 230-11 (70.38m).


Speaking of Washington State, paulmerca.blogspot.com has learned that middle distance runner Todd Wakefield, who sat out the 2014 track season with Achilles tendon problems, will transfer to the University of New Mexico.

Wakefield will earn his undergraduate degree from WSU in Kinesiology in a few weeks, then head to UNM to begin work on a graduate degree in Education, with an emphasis on Sports Administration.

Wakefield, who has one year of NCAA eligibility left, will be eligible to compete for the Lobos immediately.

At WSU, Wakefield won the MPSF 3000 title in 2013, and qualified for the NCAA cross country championship in 2012.

On Monday, Saint Martin's University announced the hiring of Burke Bockman as an assistant track coach.

Bockman, who competed collegiately at Northern Iowa where he qualified for the NCAA championships in 2003 in the 400 hurdles, comes to Saint Martin's from Utah, where he was an associate head coach, where he worked with the sprinters and hurdlers.

At Saint Martin's, he will work with the sprinters, hurdlers, and relays, and will assist with cross country.


NOTE:  The sports information office of Saint Martin's University, the Spokane Summer Games, and media partner RunnerSpace.com contributed to this report.

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