Monday, June 8, 2015

NCAAs begin Wednesday in Eugene...

For the few remaining athletes that survived the rigors of both the indoor and outdoor seasons, it comes down to the NCAA national track & field championships that begin Wednesday at Historic Hayward Field on the campus of the University of Oregon.

In order to make the meet more fan-friendly, the meet is being split into two separate meets with the men competing on Wednesday and Friday, and the women competing Thursday and Saturday.  The only exception will be the women’s heptathlon and the men’s decathlon, which both start on Wednesday.

Both Pac-12 heptathlon champ Alissa Brooks-Johnson (left/photo by Paul Merca) and decathlete Dino Dodig of Washington State will get things going Wednesday, as both qualified for the national championships by having one of the top 24 scores in the country.

On Wednesday, Washington’s Izaic Yorks and Wisconsin’s Joe Hardy via Seattle Prep compete in the men’s 1500 semifinals with berths to Friday’s finals on the line.

Also competing Wednesday are Pac-12 800 champ Jesse Jorgensen of Washington State, Washington’s Meron Simon in the steeplechase, and Tacoma native Marcus Chambers of Oregon in the 400 and in both relay semis for the Ducks.

On the field, Washington’s Curtis Clauson, Washington State’s Kyle Stevens, and UCLA’s Derek Eager from Tahoma HS will compete in the finals of the men’s javelin.

Thursday, both Dodig and Brooks-Johnson will conclude their second day of competition in the decathlon and heptathlon.

Brooks-Johnson will have about 90 minutes to rest after the heptathlon 800, before she goes in the semis of the 400 hurdles, along with teammate Liz Harper, and Washington’s Gianna Woodruff.

Also competing on the track Thursday are both Washington State women’s relay teams in the 4 x 100 and 4 x 400 semis; and Washington’s Baylee Mires in the 800 semis.  Gonzaga’s Shelby Mills will become the first Zag to compete in the national championship meet as she steps to the track in the women’s 3000 steeple semis along with Pasco native Marisa Howard of Boise State.

Washington’s Kristina Owsinski, the Pac-12 champ, competes in the finals of the pole vault, while Baileh Simms of Portland State, who graduated from Seattle’s Garfield HS competes in the long jump.  Simms is a two-time Big Sky champ in that event.

Friday will have finals in the men’s 400, 800, 1500, and steeple for Chambers, Jorgensen, Yorks, Hardy, and Simon assuming they survive Wednesday’s heats.

Saturday will be finals in both relays (Washington State), the 800 (Mires) and the steeple (Mills, Howard).  Additionally, the finals of the women’s 5000 featuring Portland’s Tansey Lystad from Kirkland and Washington’s Maddie Meyers will be contested.

Washington State’s Audrey Ketcham will compete in the finals of the women’s high jump.

ESPN will broadcast everyday of the meet on a variety of their platforms, including ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, and ESPN3 (all field events).  ESPN will offer 13.5 hours of live television coverage across its various platforms.

All of the broadcasts can be accessed on WatchESPN online or via the WatchESPN app on mobile devices.

A one-stop access to live results, heat sheets, and past results can be accessed via will be in Eugene for all four days of the NCAA championships.


In Burnaby, British Columbia, several professional and collegiate athletes with Washington ties competed in the annual Harry Jerome Track Classic at Swangard Stadium.

Rainier Beach HS alum Ginnie Crawford, who is on the comeback trail,  won the women’s 100 hurdles in 12.95, in front of Washington State assistant coach Angela Whyte, who clocked 13.26.  Former UW volunteer assistant coach Christie Gordon was sixth in 13.39.

In the women’s national 800, Washington State volunteer coach Liga Velvere from Latvia won the 800 in 2:04.27, while Cougar senior Abby Regan was fifth in 2:06.83.

Western Washington’s Katelyn Steen finished fourth in the steeplechase in 10:15.08.

In the men’s 1500, Matt Hillenbrand of the Brooks Beasts was 10th in 3:44.43.

Complete results of the Harry Jerome Track Classic are available here.

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