Saturday, February 27, 2016

Huskies' Izaic Yorks runs historic mile at Dempsey to win MPSF title...

SEATTLE—Izaic Yorks (left/photo by Paul Merca) not only broke the Washington school record and defended his Mountain Pacific Sports Federation championship in the mile—he just plain destroyed it.

Yorks ran 3:53.89 to win the mile, holding off the late charge of Stanford’s Sean McGorty, who ran 3:53.95, as both dipped under the previous facility record of 3:54.52 set five years ago by US Olympian Chris Solinsky.

Fellow Husky Blake Nelson led the field through the first two laps before yielding to Yorks.  Yorks took command until the final lap when McGorty made his challenge.  

As they came off the final turn, McGorty made a charge on the outside and appeared to nose ahead of Yorks in the last few meters, but used a well time lean to get the victory.

Yorks’ mark is the fastest collegiate time this season, and the third fastest indoor mile in NCAA history, not to mention the fastest mile run by an American in NCAA history (Kenyan Lawi Lalang of Arizona in 2014 of 3:52.88, and Great Britain’s Chris O’Hare and 3:52.98 in 2013).  To top it all off, this was a MPSF championship meet record.

“Izaic’s season has just gone, crazily enough, according to plan,” said UW head coach Greg Metcalf. “We wanted to get a DMR qualified, we wanted to get qualified in the 3k, and we wanted to take one shot at running fast in the mile, and we got a little help obviously from a teammate in Blake Nelson who did a phenomenal job of setting the table for Izaic and made his job just a little easier. I thought he could run 3:54 here, I was wrong, he ran a little faster. It turned into a phenomenal race.”

Yorks said afterwards, ““It didn’t register in my head exactly where I was,” he said. “To be honest, at 1,200 meters I didn’t even hear the split, so I was just trying to run fast at that point, so to go across the line and see that time was pretty cool.”

The sensational mile run came early in the final day of the MPSF Championships, which brought the Dempsey home season to a close for the Huskies. No. 1-ranked Oregon won the women’s team title with 108 points.  

Washington State reached its highest finish since 2004 as they scored 54.5 points, while the Huskies finished sixth out of 19 teams with 47.75 points. USC got the win on the men’s side, with the Huskies placing seventh with 49.5.   The Cougars were 12th with 19 points.

The Cougar women tallied 16.5 points in the women’s high jump with Kiana Davis, a junior from Longview, winning with a personal-best height of 5-feet 10 1/2 inches (1.79m). Liz Harper, the runner-up in the pentathlon Friday night and had soared to a PR high jump of 5-11 1/4 (1.81m), finished third Saturday with a leap of 5-10 1/2 (1.79m), behind Davis based on missed attempts.

Davis captured third-place with a PR leap of 41-2 1/4 (12.55m) which is 10th-best in WSU all-time records.

Other highlights:

—Washington’s Chris Williams finished second in the 60 hurdles, in a time of 7.77, after setting a school record in Friday’s prelims of 7.72, as Oregon’s Devon Allen, the 2014 NCAA & USA outdoor champ took the victory in a facility record 7.60; 

—The Huskies’ Kennadi Bouyer equaled her 7.32 school record in the 60-meter dash that she ran on Friday, taking second in the finals behind Federal Way native Hannah Cunliffe, who ran 7.21;

Dino Dodig of WSU reached a PR total and school record of 5,635 points for fourth place in the men’s heptathlon. Saturday morning he opened with a 60m hurdles time of 8.25 to move from fifth into fourth place, and then pole vaulted 15-5 (4.70m), and ran the 1000m in a PR time of 2:40.36. UCLA’s Steele Wasik won the event with 5,783 points, while Washington’s Josh Gordon of the Huskies was fifth with 5415 points, while teammate Cole Jensen was seventh with 5356 points.

NOTE:  The University of Washington and Washington State University contributed to this report.

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