Thursday, January 28, 2016

Olympic gold medalist Dawn Harper-Nelson & 2016 world mile leader Kim Conley heads UW Invitational field...

2008 Olympic gold medalist
Dawn Harper is among the top entries
at the UW Invite (Paul Merca photo)
A strong field is entered in Friday and Saturday’s UW Invitational at the Dempsey Indoor, with all nine Washington Division I and II schools participating this weekend.

Additionally, a bevy of top professional athletes will make their way to Seattle to compete on one of the nation’s fastest tracks as they try to get their qualifying marks for the USA indoor championships in Portland.

As always, the distance races promise to be uber-competitive, with the women’s 5000 on Friday and the women’s mile Saturday having the best fields.

2012 US Olympian Kim Conley, who ran a world leading 4:27.88 in the mile in New York last week, returns to the Dempsey to face her training partner Kate Grace in the 5000, where the fastest time in the world this season is 15:45.66.

Other notables in the women’s 5000 field include Gig Harbor native Brenna Peloquin, Allie Ostrander and Minttu Hukka of Boise State; Pasco native Marisa Howard of Oiselle; and 2014 USA cross country champ Amy Van Alstine.

The women’s mile is led by 2012 Olympian Geena Gall of Team Run Eugene, who will go against Camas’ Alexa Efraimson; Hannah Fields of the Brooks Beasts; Oiselle’s Lauren Wallace; and the Husky quartet of All-American Maddie Meyers, along with Baylee Mires, Eleanor Fulton, and Anna Maxwell. 

Some of the other top women entries include 2008 Olympic 100 hurdles champion Dawn Harper-Nelson, who will run both the 60 and 60 hurdles; Rainier Beach HS alum Ginnie Crawford (60 dash, bypassing the 60 hurdles); multi-event specialist Barbara Nwaba (60 hurdles, 800, long jump, shot put, bypassing the pentathlon); Kori Carter (400); Megan Malasarte and Natalja Piliusina of the Brooks Beasts (800); Kristina Owsinski and Diamara Planell Cruz of the Huskies (pole vault); Eastern Washington’s Kaytlyn Coleman (weight); and, former NCAA champ Andrea Geubelle of University Place (triple jump).

While the men’s distance races don’t quite have the sizzle of the women’s races at this year’s UW Invite, Dorian Ulrey and Travis Burkstrand of the Brooks Beasts are the top entries in the mile along with the Huskies’ Colby Gilbert, while Canadian Luc Bruchet leads the way in the 3000.

All-American Izaic Yorks of the Huskies drops down in distance to 800 meters, where he’ll face Mark Wieczorek and Shaquille Walker of BYU, while WSU alum and 3-time NCAA 400 hurdles champ Jeshua Anderson will run in another heat of the 800.

Jax Thoirs and Lev Marcus of the Huskies will go against UW alum JJ Juilifs in the men’s pole vault.

An interesting matchup in the men’s long jump pits UW alum Norris Frederick against UC Riverside alum Ted Hooper, while in the weight throw, Brock Eager of WSU goes against Long Beach State alum Collin Dunbar.

The UW Invitational will have a strong field in the pentathlon and heptathlon.  Friday’s pentathlon has four 4000-point scorers, led by Lindsay Lettow, a former NCAA D2 multi event champ from Central Missouri, as she returns to defend her title from last year.

In the two-day heptathlon, Arizona’s Pau Tonnesen, who was second in the NCAA decathlon and competed at the world championships in Beijing for Spain, goes against Japanese Olympian Keisuke Ushiro, and former NCAA hep champ Miller Moss.

Washington looks to put its mark on the national list in both men’s and women’s distance medley relays Friday night, an event in which the Dawgs have been regular qualifiers for at the NCAA championships.

The heat sheets for Friday and Saturday’s UW Invitational are available here (as always, subject to change; note the top 8 entries in the 60/60 hurdles have a bye to the second round & are not listed). will provide live streaming coverage of the UW Invitational ($).


Several members of the Seattle based Brooks Beasts will head to Winston-Salem, North Carolina for Saturday’s Camel City Elite meet at the JDL Fast Track.

Washington alum Katie Mackey and Jessica Tonn will run the women’s 3000, while Garrett Heath leads the field in the men’s 3000.

In the women’s 800, Seattle’s Phoebe Wright goes against Oregon alum Laura Roesler, while Cas Loxsom goes against Duane Solomon in the mens’ 800.

The Camel City Elite’s release announcing their field is available here.

RunnerSpace will provide live streaming coverage of the Camel City Elite ($).

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