Sunday, May 14, 2017

WEEKEND RECAP: Conference championship recap, plus Shanghai Diamond League...

While we are in Eugene covering the Pac-12 track and field championships, here’s a short recap of what’s happened with the other championships involving Washington schools:

GREAT NORTHWEST ATHLETIC CONFERENCE (Monmouth, Oregon)

In the women’s competition, the biggest surprise of the meet was the performance by the Central Washington squad, which turned in a surprising third place finish, scoring 85 points.

Two-time defending champion Seattle Pacific finished in fourth with 109.5 points, with Western Washington fifth at 90, and Saint Martin’s seventh with 46 points.  Alaska Anchorage won with 156 points.

Buoyed by Friday’s 1-2 finish in the 10000, and a mild upset win in the pole vault, the Wildcats had four scorers in the 100 hurdles, led by Mariyah Vongsaveng’s win in a school record 13.90, plus Tianna Banfro in fourth (14.85), Emily Bland in fifth (15.11), and Rose Walts in seventh (15.25).

They got a win in the 400 hurdles, as Bland (above/photo courtesy Central Washington University) took the title in 60.58, with Ali Anderson in second (61.69) and Erykah Weems in eighth.

Western Washington got a win from Olympic Trials qualifier Bethany Drake, who set a meet record in the javelin, throwing 171-11 (52.40m).  They collected a second victory in the triple jump, as Jasmine McMullin went 39-6.5 (12.05m) to earn her second title in the event.

The Western Washington men finished a close second to Alaska Anchorage by a 134-132 count, with the team championship decided in the final event,  the 4x400 relay, after the Vikings took the lead by five points going into the relay.

Central Washington was sixth with 85 points, while Saint Martin’s (22) and Seattle Pacific (16) brought up the rear.

The team championship for the UAA men marked the second time in the last three seasons that a margin of 2 points separated UAA and WWU at the GNAC Outdoor Championships as the Vikings had edged the Seawolves two years ago, 176-174, in claiming the 2015 team title. 

Western Washington kept the meet close with three individual titles, one that was expected and two that weere surprises. Sophomore Alex Barry was the expected title as he easily won the javelin with a mark of 198 feet, 11.75 inches.

Freshman Cordell Cummings took advantage of a trip on the final hurdle by Central Washington’s Trevaughn Scott to surge ahead over the final 40 meters to win the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 53.97 seconds. Junior Issac Derline, meanwhile, came out ahead in a cat-and-mouse game with Alaska Anchorage’s Dominik Notz and Edwin Kangogo on the final lap of the 5,000 meters with his winning time of 15:49.49. Notz was second in 15:19,75 while Kangogo placed third in 15:20.23.

Saint Martin’s junior Kauanoe Vanderpoel picked up the Saints’ lone championship of the meet, winning the hammer with a mark of 188 feet, 7 inches (57.49m).


SHANGHAI DIAMOND LEAGUE

Seattle resident Cas Loxsom finished tenth in the 800 meters at Saturday’s IAAF Diamond League meet in Shanghai, China.

Loxsom ran 1:49.44 as Kipyegon Bett of Kenya won in 1:44.70.

Katie Mackey of the Brooks Beasts was eighth in the 1500, as the Washington alum ran a season best 4:07.15.  Faith Kipyegon of Kenya won in a world leading time of 3:59.22.

The IAAF Diamond League tour moves to Eugene for the Nike Prefontaine Classic on May 26-27th.


BIG SKY CONFERENCE (Sacramento, CA.)

Eastern Washington’s women’s squad finished eighth with 44 points, and their men’s team were 12th with 14 points.


WESTERN ATHLETIC CONFERENCE (Edinburg, TX)

Seattle University’s women’s squad finished fifth at the Western Athletic Conference meet Saturday with a final team score of 70 points, as the University of Missouri at Kansas City took the team title with 179 points.

The men’s team competition saw the Redhawks finish sixth with 19 points, as UMKC also won the team title with 226 points.


NOTE:  The IAAF, Great Northwest Athletic Conference, Central Washington University, Eastern Washington University and Seattle University contributed to this report.

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