Saturday, March 10, 2018

Washington's Chase Smith tenth in pole vault at NCAA championships; SPU DMR gets fifth at Division II champs...

At the NCAA Division I indoor track & field championships in College Station, Texas, the University of Washington’s Chase Smith (left/photo by Paul Merca) finished tenth in the men’s pole vault Friday night, clearing a best of 17-8.25 (5.40m).

Smith, who became the fourth Husky to clear 18 feet in school history with his mark of 18-1 (5.51m) at the UW Open last month, started the day with a second attempt make at 17-4.5 (5.30m), then cleared 17-8.5 (5.40m) on his first, before bowing out with three misses at 18-0.5 (5.50m), one centimeter below his personal best.

In an event that featured nine men over 18 feet, Kansas’ Hussain Alhizam was victorious at 18-8.5 (5.70m).

Washington State’s Alissa Brooks-Johnson finished 11th in the pentathlon with a score of 4060 points.

Brooks-Johnson, a two-time Pac-12 heptathlon champion, opened her first competition at the NCAA indoors with a 60m hurdles time of 8.63 seconds which was 11th-fastest out of the 16 competitors. In the high jump, she ended it by clearing 5-6 1/2 (1.69m) on her second attempt but missed on all three attempts at the next height of 5-7 3/4 (1.72m). She moved up to ninth place overall in the pentathlon after two events.

In the shot put, she threw a season-best distance of 40-0 1/2 (12.20m). After this event she was 10th overall with 2,505 points, 314 points out of first place, eight points from ninth, and 22 points for eighth place.

In the long jump Brooks-Johnson opened with a leap of 18-2 1/2 (5.55m), reached 18-1 1/2 (5.52m) in her second jump, and soared to a distance of 18-8 1/2 (5.70m) in her final jump but dropped to 10th in the overall standings. She ran the final event, the 800m, in a time of 2 minutes 22.07 seconds, 12th-fastest of the field, but well off of her personal best of 2:12.60.

Taliyah Brooks of Arkansas won the pentathlon with a season best 4572 points.

Oregon’s Tanner Anderson, a product of Spokane’s North Central HS, was 16th in the men’s 5000 in a time of 14:22.93, as Syracuse’s Justyn Knight won in 14:14.47.

Washington’s Colby Gilbert and Amy-Eloise Neale will run in Saturday’s men’s and women’s 3000 meters.  Gilbert looks to improve from his fifth place finish from last year.

ESPN3 will provide live streaming coverage of the meet, while a delayed telecast of the meet will be shown Sunday on ESPN2 at 4 pm pacific.

At the NCAA Division II championships in Pittsburg, Kansas on Friday, Seattle Pacific’s distance medley relay team of Kate Lilly, Lani Taylor, Chynna Phan, and Mary Charleson ran a season best 11:31.69 to also earn a fifth place finish, with all four runners running season bests on their individual legs.
The Falcons initially crossed the line in sixth, but advanced one place after second-place Adams State was disqualified for a violation on the final exchange.

Western State was the winner in 11:19.98.

Central Washington’s Halle Irvine finished sixth in the women’s pole vault in a personal best 12-6.25 (3.82m).

The sophomore started out fast, with first attempt clearances are 11-8.5 (3.57m) and 12-2.5 (3.72m), before needing a second attempt to navigate her personal best.

Seattle Pacific’s Scout Cai, who returns to action Saturday in the pentathlon, finished 16th at 11-8.5 (3.57m).  Missouri Southern’s Emily Presley won with a clearance of 13-10 (4.22m).

In other action, Central Washington’s Ali Anderson advanced to the finals in the women’s 400, running a personal best 54.98 to finish second in her heat.

The Wildcats’ Mariyah Vongsaveng wasn’t fortunate in the qualifying rounds of the 60 hurdles, as the GNAC champ led after the first hurdle, but hit the next one, finishing in 8.66.

GNAC heptathlon champ Kodiak Landis accumulated a total of 2,967 points through four events, which is currently good enough for eighth place. A personal best time of 6.99 seconds in the 60-meter highlighted his performance in the event.  

Landis continues with the final three events of the heptathlon.  Anderson, along with teammate HarLee Ortega, and SPU’s Cal begin competition in Saturday’s pentathlon, with Anderson running in the 400 finals a few hours after the conclusion of the pentathlon.

Western Washington’s lone competitor, Jasmine McMullin, competes in the women’s triple jump.

Incidentally, a group of athletes from Saint Martin's, Seattle Pacific, Central Washington, and Western Washington will compete in Saturday's PLU Open in Tacoma.  The heat sheets of the meet are available here, while the time schedule is available here.

NOTE:  The NCAA, and the sports information offices of the University of Washington, Washington State, Central Washington and Seattle Pacific contributed to this report.

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