EUGENE—The University of Washington’s Jax Thoirs (left/photo by Mike Scott), competing in his final meet in the purple and gold, finished his Husky career with a fifth place finish in the pole vault, as the NCAA track & field championships started its four day run at Historic Hayward Field on the campus of the University of Oregon.
The Scottish native cleared a best of 17-10.5 (5.45m) on his third attempt to stay alive in the competition. He then went to the next height of 18-2.5 (5.55m), and though he had a solid jump on his second attempt, Thoirs caught too much of the bar.
Tennessee’s Jake Blankenship won the title with a best of 18-4.5 (5.60m).
In other finals contested, the Huskies’ Tyler King was 23rd in the 10000 in 32:13.48. In the javelin, Washington’s Carson Fuller was 15th at 230-4 (70.22m), while teammate Quinn Hale was 18th at 228-2 (69.55m).
In semi-final action, the Huskies’ Izaic Yorks had the third fastest time of the day in finishing second in his heat of the 1500, running 3:40.87. It was a tough go for Puyallup’s David Elliott of Boise State (3:49.93) and Washington’s Blake Nelson (3:52.15).
Tacoma’s Marcus Chambers, the Pac-12 400 champ from the University of Oregon, had the fourth fastest time of the day in that event, running 45.28. Earlier in the day, the junior ran the anchor leg on the Ducks’ 4 x 100m relay, as they ran 39.41, but did not advance to the finals on Friday.
Two-time Pac-12 steeplechase champion Aaron Nelson struggled today after consecutive outstanding efforts at Pac-12s and West Prelims. He finished 12th in his semifinal heat in 9:03.33, while sophomore Andrew Gardner finished ninth in the same heat and 17th overall in 8:48.79 in his NCAA debut.
Washington State’s 400 meter hurdle champ CJ Allen ran strongly through eight hurdles, but it was the last two that did him in, as he got caught between steps over the final barriers, costing him a spot in the finals. Allen ran 50.94, which was the 12th fastest time of the day, well off his personal best of 50.16 from earlier in the season, but not good enough to advance to Friday’s finals.
Thursday is women’s semis day, as the Huskies have seven competitors competing, while Federal Way’s Hannah Cunliffe of Oregon, who is one of the favorites, runs in the semis of the 100 dash, and the third leg of the Ducks’ 4 x 100 relay.
Other notables with Washington ties competing include Snohomish native Shelby Mills of Gonzaga in the steeple semis, Olympia’s Brooke Feldmeier of Oregon in the 800, and Gig Harbor’s Brenna Peloquin of Boise State in the 10000 finals.
Here is the updated list of athletes competing the next three days, along with their start times:
W 4 x 100 semis (4:32 pm)—Hannah Cunliffe
W 1500 semis (4:46 pm)—Amy-Eloise Neale, Anna Maxwell
W Pole Vault finals (5:00 pm)—Liz Quick
W 3000 steeple semis (5:02 pm)—Charlotte Prouse, Shelby Mills
W 100 semis (5:46 pm)—Cunliffe, Kennadi Bouyer
W 800 semis (6:14 pm)—Baylee Mires, Brooke Feldmeier
W 10000 finals (7:08 pm)—Katie Knight, Brenna Peloquin
W heptathlon (12:30 pm)—Liz Harper
M 1500 finals (5:42 pm)—Izaic Yorks
M 400 finals (6:32 pm)—Marcus Chambers
M 5000 finals (7:25 pm)—Colby Gilbert
W Heptathlon (11:30 am)—Harper
W High Jump finals (3:00 pm)—Harper
W Discus finals (3:05 pm)—Tera Novy
W 5000 finals (5:25 pm)—Peloquin
The NCAA track & field championships are being carried live each day on the ESPN family of networks. The link to the time schedule is available here.
NOTE: The University of Washington, Washington State University, the University of Oregon, and the NCAA contributed to this report.