With Entries Solidified, Eastern Will Send 36 Athletes to the Big Sky Championships

With Entries Solidified, Eastern Will Send 36 Athletes to the Big Sky Championships

20 qualifying marks combined with a number of top 16 marks makes the Eagles a force to be reckoned with in Flagstaff 

The week the Eastern Washington University track and field team works toward all season is here.

The Eagles will make the venture to Flagstaff, Ariz., for the 2015 Big Sky Conference Indoor Championships, hosted by Northern Arizona at the Walkup Skydome this Thursday through Saturday (Feb. 26-28).

Eastern will send 23 women and 13 men to the championships. Fifteen Eagles are currently ranked in the top five in their respective events and have their eyes on titles and all-conference performances (top-three finish).

Women's Preview


Representing the women are Catie Arrigoni (3k, 5k) Courtney Bray (pole vault), Mayra Chavez (3k), Anandae Clark (pole vault), Erin Clark (pole vault), Kaytlyn Coleman (weight throw, shot put), Leiran Cornish (4x400), Janessa Day (4x400, distance medley relay), Paula Gil-Echevarria (mile, distance medley relay), Kelsie Forcier (shot put, weight throw), Paige Hammock (4x400), Jozie Kimes (pentathlon, high jump), Kayla Loop (weight throw), Erika Lombardo (4x400), Katie Lynch (distance medley relay), Katie Mahoney (mile, distance medley relay) Morena Mannucci (triple jump), Olivia Midles (weight throw), Emma Murillo (weight throw), Sarah Reiter (3k, 5k), Morgan Romey (shot put), Rebecca Tarbert (60, 200), and Tierra White (high jump).

In only five meets in an Eagle uniform, Coleman heads into the conference championships ranked second in the weight throw with a toss of 64-8 3/4. She also qualified for the shot put and ranks sixth with a throw of 46-4.

Murillo, the current Big Sky Champion outdoors in the javelin, is right behind Coleman with a mark of 61-8 1/4 to rank third in the league. Coleman and Murillo are two of only four Eastern athletes to ever throw over 60 feet in the women's weight throw.

Mannucci's triple jump mark of 39-2 1/4 currently ranks second in the conference. She will head to her last indoor conference championships with her sights set on the school record and her first all-conference performance.

Historically, the pole vault has always been one of Eastern's strongest events at the Big Sky Championships, and this season looks to be no different. Bray is the current reigning champion outdoors in the pole vault. She has continued to improve in that event each week and is ranked second in the conference with a mark of 13-1 1/4.

Teammate Anandae Clark will also contend for a title and is ranked third right behind Bray with a mark of 13-0 1/4.

Reiter, still fresh off bringing home Eastern's first individual Big Sky cross country title in school history, is ranked second in the 5,000 with a time of 16:47.48. She will also compete in the 3,000 and looks to build off her top-ten finishes in each event at last year's indoor championships.

Arrigoni will also be competing in the 3k and 5k -- her time of 17:11.83 ranks her fourth in the 5,000 heading into the championships. At last year's outdoor conference in Flagstaff, Ariz., Arrigoni won the steeplechase and had a runner-up finish in the 5k.

Mahoney and Gil-Echevarria will be representing Eastern in the mile and are ranked fourth and fifth, respectively. Earlier this season, Gil-Echevarria broke the 11-year-old school record in the mile with a time of 4:54.37. Mahoney then went on to break that record with a time of 4:51.85.

White is Eastern's lone freshman in the jumps and is currently ranked fifth with a mark of 5-6.

Men's Preview


Competing for the men will be Jordan Arakawa (weight throw), Nick Anthony (4x400), Aaron Brenton (5k), Blair Bomber (4x400), Aaron Cunningham (shot put), Chase Davis (pole vault), Tyree Fort (60), Brad Michael (400, 4x400), Obinna Nnadi (60), Trenton Osborn (long jump), Phillip Puccino (triple jump, high jump), Austin Upmeyer (400, 4x400), and Jeremy VanAssche (60, 200).

Arakawa is no stranger to Big Sky competition and will look for his second consecutive Big Sky title in the weight throw. His season best mark of 64-10 3/4 is currently ranked second in the league going into the championships.

Osborn enters the meet as the favorite in the long jump. His personal best of 23-9 1/2 has sat atop the Big Sky Conference standings all season. He is looking to build off his second-place finish in that event at last year's indoor championships.

VanAssche is the lone double qualifier on the men's side in the 60 and 200 dashes. As a freshman, his personal-best time in the 60 of 6.91 ranks second in the conference.

Fort will join VanAssche in the 60. He is currently ranked fourth in the league with a time of 6.96.

Puccino qualified for the championships in his first and only appearance in the triple jump this season with a mark of 46-8. He is currently ranked eighth in the league heading into the championships, but is not to be taken lightly as he finished third in that event at the 2012 indoor championships, earning All-Big Sky accolades.

Action for the Eagles will begin on Thursday at 11:15 Pacific time with the women's pentathlon. A complete schedule, along with live video and results, may be found at: http://nauathletics.com/2015BigSkyIndoorTFChampionshipCentral

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