Wednesday, September 24, 2014

A potpourri of news items to pass along...

Some notes to pass along:

--Sarah Reiter of Eastern Washington (above/photo courtesy Eastern Washington University) was named the Big Sky Conference athlete of the week for her effort in winning the Big Sky Cross Country Triangular meet last Saturday in Portland, where shoe ran 17:42 over the Blue Lake Park course.

--In the USTFCCCA Division II national cross country poll, both Western Washington squads remain in the top 25, as the Vikings are #20 in the men's poll, and #19 in the women's poll.

The top five men's teams in Division II are Adams State, Grand Valley State, Western State, Chico State, and Southern Indiana.

From the GNAC, Alaska Anchorage is ranked #8.

On the women's side, Grand Valley State, Adams State, Western State, Minnesota Duluth, and Chico State are the top five teams.

Besides Western, Simon Fraser is the only GNAC school ranked nationally at #9, jumping seven spots after a strong showing at the Sundodger Invitational.

Central Washington's surprising finish at the Sundodger got them votes, but just miss making the national top 25.  In contrast, Seattle Pacific, which was ranked #13 in the pre-season poll, dropped out of the national rankings.

This weekend, Western Washington will run at the St. Martin's Invitational in Lacey, while Seattle Pacific heads to Palo Alto for the Stanford Invitational.  Washington State will also send their team to the Stanford Invite.

--We missed a couple of results from the previous weekend, as Navy came out west to beat Gonzaga Saturday in a men's dual meet 23-36 at the Plantes Ferry Sports Complex in Spokane Valley.

Stephen Schroeder of the Midshipmen won the race over the 8k course in 25:05, six seconds ahead of the Zags' Robert Walgren and Troy Fraley, who went 2-3.

Navy got their 2-5 runners ahead of Gonzaga's third man Kyle Branch, who was eighth over all in 25:34 to clinch the victory.

Gonzaga's women's team took second in the Erik Anderson Invitational at Plantes Ferry, as Gonzaga redshirt Jessica Mildes, competing unattached, won in 18:34 over 5k.

Catie Arrigoni, Eastern Washington's NCAA steeple qualifier who is redshirting, finished third in 19:07, opting to stay close to home, as she was originally on the start list at the Sundodger Invitational.

Zoe Urcadez was Gonzaga's top scorer in fifth, running 19:25.  

Lewis-Clark State took the team tile with 20 points, outdistancing the Zags, who had 46. will be in Germany for Sunday's BMW Berlin Marathon!

From an American perspective, all eyes will be on Portland's Shalane Flanagan, as she aims for the American record of 2:19:36 set by Deena Kastor in 2006 in Chicago.

Asked why she would travel to Europe to run Berlin instead of either New York or Chicago and a bigger payday, Flanagan said, "We think Berlin is one of the fastest, if not the fastest courses," Flanagan said. "There were too many variables with Chicago, and you would be gambling with the weather."

We will post a preview of Sunday's race in the next day or so.  In the meantime, courtesy of the BMW Berlin Marathon, here's a video announcing the elite athletes in the field:

NOTE:  The sports information offices of Eastern Washington, and Gonzaga, along with the USTFCCCA and the BMW Berlin Marathon contributed to this report.

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