Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Quick observations about this weekend's UW Invitational...


—Eight 2016 Rio Olympians are entered including University Place native Andrea Geubelle (left/photo by Paul Merca), who will do both the long and triple jumps; Kate Grace, who is entered in both the 800 and mile; Alexi Pappas (5000m); Barbara Nwaba (pentathlon on Friday, plus long jump and 60 hurdles); former Puyallup resident Hassan Mead (mile & 3000); Nate Brannen (3000); Charles Philibert-Thiboudot (3000); and Logan Cunningham (pole vault).

Shortly after this was posted, agent Dan Lilot dropped a note stating that Canada's Luc Bruchet, who has been a regular at the Dempsey, will run the mile, to make it nine Rio Olympians. He was not on the initial list released by the school.

—In the women’s 800, Olympian Kate Grace goes against a trio of Seattle-based Brooks Beasts runners in Claudia Saunders, Baylee Mires and Natalja Piliusina; 

—The women’s mile sees Grace go up against Camas’ Alexa Efraimson, along with a resurgent Brie Felnagle, along with UT-San Antonio alum Dana Mecke and former Oregon prep standout Ella Donaghu; 

—Friday’s 5000 sees Greek Olympian and Oregon alum Alexi Pappas against Stanford’s Vanessa Fraser; 

—In the women’s distance medley relay, both Stanford and the host Huskies are shooting for a possible sub-11 minute run; 

—On the field, two of the best events will be pole vault, featuring the last two Pac-12 champs: Kristina Owsinski and Liz Quick of the UW, against San Diego State alums Kristen Brown and Kortney Ross; and the long jump, featuring a trio of Olympians—Andrea Geubelle, Barbara Nwaba, and Sharon Day-Monroe;

—Nwaba, who was the Olympic Trials champion in the heptathlon, opens Friday with the pentathlon, where she’ll face her Santa Barbara TC teammate Chari Hawkins and last year’s Pac-12 heptathlon runner-up Alyssa Thompson, in what is perhaps the largest multi-event field in UW Invite history, with 32 women entered.

Looking at the men’s entries:

—In the men’s 800, UC Santa Barbara alum Ryan Martin goes against Drew Windle of the Brooks Beasts and Arizona’s Pac-12 champ Collins Kibet; 

—The mile has seven athletes who have run under 4 minutes including former Puyallup resident and 2016 US Olympian Hassan Mead (left/photo by Paul Merca); two-time US Olympian and Oregon alum Andrew Wheating; and 2012 Irish Olympian Ciaran O’Lionaird. With the addition of Vancouver's Luc Bruchet, a regular at the Dempsey, this makes it eight sub-4 minute milers; 

—A trio of Olympians headline the 3000:  Mead, and Canadians Nate Brannen and Charles Philibert-Thiboudot, with Washington’s Colby Gilbert and Puyallup native David Elliott, formerly of Boise State thrown in the mix; 

—In the men’s pole vault, Rio Olympian Logan Cunningham headlines the field, where he’ll face Idaho State alum Mike Arnold, who was eighth at last year’s world indoor championships in Portland;

—In the heptathlon, Oregon’s Mitch Modin and Joe Delgado battle the Huskies’ Josh Gordon, with the Santa Barbara TC’s Tom Hopkins and Tom FitzSimons out to push the collegians.

As always, the list of accepted entries are tentative, as athletes are bound to scratch and/or switch events.  The University of Washington will post final entries and heats/flights sometime on Thursday.

A link to the meet time schedule is available here.  The final time schedule will be posted on the UW site in the next day or so.

paulmerca.blogspot.com will post a preview of the meet on Thursday.

NOTE:  The University of Washington contributed to this report.

1 comment:

Long Distance06 said...

A day to remember - Sally Kipyego Now A U.S. Citizen - Congrats!

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