Friday, April 16, 2010

UW's Katie Follett wins epic metric mile battle with SPU's Jessica Pixler at Mt. SAC...

WALNUT, California--In an epic battle, Washington senior Katie Follett (left/file photo by Paul Merca) defeated cross-town rival Jessica Pixler of Seattle Pacific to win the top section of the 1500 meter run at Friday night's running of the Mt. SAC Relays at Hilmer Lodge Stadium.

Follett's school record time of 4:10.66 (old UW school record was 4:10.93 by Courtney Inman, set in 2003) is currently the second fastest time outdoors in the world, behind Kenya's Ann Karindi Mwangi.

Pixler's runner-up time of 4:11.06 broke the SPU school record of 4:13.12, set by Gitte Karlshoj.

Here is the video of the race, courtesy of media partner

In one of the last premier events of the night session, junior Colton Tully-Doyle turned in the second-fastest 5,000-meter run in Washington history, as he was one of fourteen men to break 14-minutes in his section of the 5k. Tully-Doyle set the indoor school record just a few weeks back, but had run the 1,500-meters in his first two outdoor appearances.

Tully-Doyle churned around the track in 13:52.40, faster than all Huskies in history save for school record-holder David Bazzi, who ran 13:40.61 in 2001. Prior to this season, Tully-Doyle's personal-best at the distance was 14:26.27, more than a 30-second improvement in just one year.

Close behind Tully-Doyle was senior Jake Schmitt, who was just off his personal-best in the 5k with a time of 14:04.20.

In the women's 5,000-meter invitational, senior Anita Campbell carve about 30-seconds off her time from just one week prior, as she ran 16:17.85, a big step forward as the defending Pac-10 10,000-meter champ gets herself back up to speed for the longer distance.

More excellent efforts were turned in by the underclassmen tonight. Freshman Justine Johnson had a big PR in the open heats of the 1,500-meters, as she ran 4:31.34. Under the stars, sophomore Kayla Evans showed again what a difference a year can make, as she ran 16:43.01 in the 5,000-meters.

Sophomore Ryan Soberanis had a PR as well in the men's 1,500-meters as he crossed in 3:48.61. Fellow sophomore Ryan Styrk also had a five-second personal-best of 3:52.17.

The highlight of the field events was senior Ryan Vu, who went up and over 17-feet in the pole vault for the first time this season. Vu cleared 17-0 ¾ to be precise, making the bar on his second attempt.


Freshman Shawna Fermin ran a lifetime-best 400m dash time of 54.99 seconds for fourth place overall and was second among collegians. Ryan Barrett ran a season-best 400m dash time of 48.07 for 10th place and Reny Follett also ran a season-best time of 49.39.

In the men's 100m dash, Greg Hornsby ran a PR time of 10.68 for seventh, Nate Washington's season-best time of 10.72 was 10th, and Brett Blanshan ran a season-best time of 10.82 for 17th. Cindy Robinson ran a 100m rime of 12.13 for 11th.

The WSU men's 4x400m relay team of Hornsby, Jeshua Anderson, Barrett and Follett won in a time of 3-minutes, 12.88 seconds while the WSU "B" team of J Hopkins, Kyle Schauble, Dana Wells and André Jennings finished seventh in a time of 3:19.12.

In the women's 200m dash, Princess Joy Griffey won her heat with a season-best time of 24.09w for fifth place while Jasmine Johnson-McKeown ran a PR time of 24.47for 10th and Cindy Robinson ran a time of 24.51w for 11th. Marlon Murray had the top time in the men's 200m at 21.57 for 13th and Blanshan ran a time of 21.65 for 20th.


Besides Pixler's charge into the SPU school record books Friday, junior pole vaulter Melissa Peaslee cleared 12 feet, 5½ inches to win her flight of the pole vault open event. That was 1½ inches higher than the previous SPU outdoor record of 12-4 set by Ally Studer in 2003. That mark by Studer also was the old GNAC record, which Western Washington’s Christy Miller tied last year.

She also beat her previous outdoor best of 12-3½, set in 2008. Her all-time career best is an indoor clearance of 12-9. Prior to Friday’s performance, her best this season was 11-11¾, set just last weekend in Spokane at The War III meet.

SPU senior Latasha Essien (Portland, Ore.) made her 2010 outdoor debut with a strong run in the 100-meter dash, crossing the line in 12.35 seconds for a GNAC automatic qualifying time. That time also stands as the best in the conference so far this spring -- by the bare minimum one-hundredth of a second ahead of the 12.36 posted by Western Washington sophomore Joana Houplin on Thursday at the Cal State L.A. Twilight Open.

Senior Lisa Anderberg (Edmonds, Wash./Kamiak HS) ran fourth in her section and 14th overall in the 800 meters in 2:11.76.

In the Bryan Clay Invitational at nearby Azusa Pacific University, junior Crystal Sims (Portland, Ore.) ran a season- and SPU career-best time of 58.01 seconds in the 400 meters.

Seattle Pacific’s only other competitor in that meet, sophomore Alison Worthen (Coos Bay, Ore.), cleared 5-3 in the high jump.

All of the Falcon women who are in California except for Peaslee are set to compete at the Beach Invitational in Cerritos on Saturday.


Viking hammer thrower Michael Hoffman threw a NCAA D-II provisional national qualifying mark of 185-4 (56.48 meters) which netted him a personal best and was just under two feet short of the school record.

Western's Ryan Brown (Jr., Bellingham/Squalicum) cleared 16-8 3/4 (5.10) to finish ninth in the top division of the men's pole vault, Monika Gruszecki (Jr., Edmonds/Meadowdale) placed 10th in the women's javelin, upping her provisional qualifying mark to 138-7 (42.25), and Emily Warman (So., Sedro-Woolley) placed 14th in the women's triple jump with a mark of 36-10 1/2 (11.24).

The Vikings' Sarah Brownell (Jr., Yelm) was fourth in her heat and 25th overall in the women's 400 meters (57.59), Rachael Johnson (Jr., Yakima/West Valley) was seventh in her section and 31st overall in the women's 800 (2:15.44), Michelle Howe (Jr., Lakewood) was sixth in her section and 32nd overall in the women's 110 hurdles (14.59), Alex Tilley (So., Edmonds/Kamiak) was fourth in his section and 34th overall in the men's 100 meters (11.06) and Matt O'Connell (Sr., Sammamish/Skyline) was sixth in his heat and 37th overall in the men's 400 (50.42).

The women's 4x100 relay of Joana Houplin (Jr., Olympia), Howe, Eleanor Siler (So. Spokane/Lewis & Clark) and Megan Zukowski (Jr., Maple Valley/Tahoma) placed sixth in its heat (49.02), and the men's 4x100 quartet of Justin Thomsen (Fr., Bellingham/Sehome), Anthony Zackery (Sr., Spokane/Ferris), Shane Gruger (Jr., Shoreline/Shorewood) and Tilley finished fourth in its heat (42.07).

Western's Anthony Tomsich (Sr., Fairbanks, AK/West Valley) ran in the men's 5,000 which began at 10:30 p.m.

Two Vikings competed at the Azusa Pacific Invitational. Courtney Olsen (Sr., Bellingham/Squalicum) placed third in the women's 1,500 (4:37.27) and Ben Elder (Jr., Lake Stevens) finished 5th in the men's shot put (51-6 1/2, 15.71).

Complete results from the Mt. SAC Relays can be accessed by visiting

NOTE: The Mt. SAC Relays, Seattle Pacific, University of Washington, Western Washington, and Washington State Universities all contributed to this report.

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