NEW ORLEANS—The University of Washington’s Izaic Yorks (left/photo by Paul Merca) and Greg Metcalf each earned regional awards from the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA), according to a release from the organization today.
Yorks, a senior from Lakewood, Washington, is currently ranked #1 in the collegiate ranks in the 1500 meters at 3:37.74, set in winning the Payton Jordan Invitational at Stanford last month against a field that included several Olympians and world championships finalists.
He repeated as Pac-12 champion in the 1500 several weeks ago at Husky Track, running from the front, and daring the field to go with him, a stark contrast to last year’s championship, when he came from behind over the final few meters to take the victory.
Yorks also doubled back later that day to take fourth in the 800-meter final. His 3:37.74 mark broke the UW school record at 1,500-meters and leads the NCAA, and is qualified to compete in the US Olympic Trials next month in Eugene. Yorks made his third career NCAA Outdoor meet by winning his 1,500m quarterfinal last week in Lawrence, Kansas.
Metcalf earns a rare distinction of winning West Region coaching honors twice in one academic year, as he was also the West Region Men’s Cross Country Coach of the Year this past fall. The men finished eighth at NCAA cross country in the fall, then sixth at NCAA indoors this winter, and are looking for another top-10 finish to close out the year this week.
Metcalf coached the Husky men’s team to a second-place finish for just the second time in school history, and first since 1976. The Dawgs scored 122 points, the first time UW has ever scored over 100. The Huskies won four Pac-12 titles on the men’s side, including three by the UW distance runners, which Metcalf oversees.
The men’s distance runners amassed 60 points at Pac-12s, most of any team. Colby Gilbert’s win in the Pac-12 5,000-meters was the first by a Husky in that event in over fifty years.
Yorks is one of 16 Huskies that will begin competition Wednesday at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Eugene at Historic Hayward Field on the campus of the University of Oregon. Of that group, 11 men and women are distance runners directly coached by Metcalf. While he has a berth in the field at the US Olympic Trials, Yorks is looking to go under the Olympic standard of 3:36.20.
NOTE: The USTFCCCA and the University of Washington contributed to this report.