Eastern Stays Close to Home for WSU Indoor Meet

Eastern Stays Close to Home for WSU Indoor Meet

Eagles hungry to grab more Big Sky Conference qualifying marks as the season winds down

The Eastern Washington University track and field team will have its second-to-last chance to hit Big Sky Conference qualifying standards this Friday and Saturday (Feb. 6-7) at the Cougar Indoor meet in Pullman, Wash.

The Eagles will get another chance to face Big Sky foe Idaho this weekend, as well as Division I neighbor, Washington State. Much like the Idaho Collegiate meet three weeks ago, this meet will be scored within Division I schools. The last time Eastern faced Idaho this season, both the men's and women's squads defeated their Big Sky opponent with scores of 61-50 and 85-31, respectively.

The scores may look a bit different this weekend as Eastern's top distance runners will be sitting out in order to rest and prepare for their next competition at Seattle's Dempsey Indoor Center -- a venue that favors the distance events.

This weekend, the sprint and hurdle crews will get a unique chance to race in a facility that has eight lanes indoors as opposed to the normal four. The conference venue in Flagstaff, Ariz., will have eight lanes.

Most of Eastern's sprinters are entered in the 60 and 200-meter dashes as opposed to the 400, giving them a chance to post solid personal records or conference qualifying marks in events that they don't usually compete in.

Eastern will be fully loaded in the jumps and throws this weekend -- two areas that have combined for seven of Eastern's 16 total qualifying marks. The Eagles also have athletes entered in the pentathlon on Friday.

The pentathlon, men's and women's weight throw and long jump, as well as the men's pole vault, will be on Friday beginning at 12:30 p.m. Pacific time. Saturday's action will kick off with the men's high jump and shot put at 11.

Quoting Head Men's Coach Stan Kerr

"We are looking forward to getting back to WSU. This venue is travel friendly and we won't have to spend as many hours on a bus."

"Scored meets are always interesting. You have to look at who is redshirting versus the amount of scholarships each school has -- all of that will skew the scoring. I like the fact that this meet is scored because it has extra incentive that what you do matters."

"The men's weight throw has been steady with Evan Banchero, Aaron Cunningham, and Jordan Arakawa. They all had a good week last week and are always consistent. If you are consistent, that's a nice plateau to be on. The breakthrough will come once we stop lifting as hard and shift into conference mode. The three of them like lifting, but they also like getting ready to peak at conference where they will have their big throws."

"We will deemphasize in the distance events this week, it's not the ideal venue. Some athletes will be running though – it will competitive and the marks count if someone does run a good race."

"Everyone on the sprints and hurdles crew will run a 60 or a 200, and they are excited. I always have the philosophy that you need to be able to compete at an event higher and lower than your marquee event. A lot of them have never run a timed 60, and they are also looking forward to an indoor 200 personal record. What we are doing in practice this week will carry over to this weekend and get them ready to race in Flagstaff."

"Andrew Morgan will continue to emerge in the high jump -- he is looking forward to a good performance and good competition. Trenton Osborn will long jump and make his indoor debut in the triple jump."

"Our weekly goal during the season is to qualify for conference. We try to motivate them and remind them that that is why they are working this hard. This group is strong and works hard and their marks show it. The seniors set a great tone for our talented freshman class at every competition."

Quoting Head Coach Marcia Mecklenburg

"WSU's indoor facility is a big bubble, so it's a different environment than what our athletes have been used to. It's a very nice facility."

"I am optimistic and hoping that we will win. We aren't going in full force due to our distance crew training instead of competing this week. The distance runners are good too, so we will lose points there."

"This is an opportunity for our other athletes who haven't had as many chances to compete. They will get a chance to compete in more open events and not just the relays. That being said, it will be fun to see how they do."

"Multi events aren't offered at every meet so we will take advantage of that this week with Jozie Kimes and Anna Croskrey."

"Our pole vaulters and jumpers are going in full force again. They have been steady and consistent the last couple of weeks and I am looking for a breakthrough from that whole group. I am hopeful that Tierra White and the other freshman jumpers will improve their marks."

"The throwers are doing well. We're solid in the weight throw and I would like to see Olivia Midles and Kelsie Forcier qualify. I will be very pleased if the shot putters will move out of the 44-foot range and into the 45-foot range."

"The Big Sky standards are difficult to reach. To actually hit the conference standard you have achieved something pretty huge. The bottom line goal every year if you want to be on the track and field team is to meet the Big Sky standard. That is what they are shooting for, no matter how realistic or unrealistic it is. If they're a Division I athlete, that's something they need to be going for and hopefully we'll get some more this weekend."

Men's Qualifiers/Records:

Big Sky Championships – Feb. 26-28 – Flagstaff, Ariz.
NCAA Championships – Mar. 13-14 – Fayetteville, Ark.
School Records Broken: None
Total Big Sky Championships Qualifying Marks Attained: 4
Trenton Osborn
– Long Jump – 23-9 1/2 – East Wenatchee, Wash. (Eastmont HS '13)
Jordan Arakawa
– Weight Throw – 64-8 – Olympia, Wash. (Capital HS '10)
Jeremy VanAssche – 60-meter dash – 6.92 – East Wenatchee, Wash. (Eastmont HS '14)
Tyree Fort – 60-meter dash – 6.96 – Fayetteville, N.C. (Rogers HS '14)

Women's Qualifiers/Records:

Big Sky Championships – Feb. 26-28 – Flagstaff, Ariz.
NCAA Championships – Mar. 13-14 – Fayetteville, Ark.
School Records Broken: Paula Gil-Echevarria – Mile – 4:54.37
Total Big Sky Championships Qualifying Marks Attained: 12
Jozie Kimes – Pentathlon – 3,359 – Cashmere, Wash. (Cashmere HS '12)
Courtney Bray – Pole Vault – 12-11 3/4 – Mead, Wash. (Mt. Spokane HS '13)
Anandae Clark – Pole Vault -- 12-5 1/2 – Nine Mile Falls, Wash. (Lakeside HS '12)
Morena Mannucci – Triple Jump – 39-2 1/4 – Rome, Italy (Anco Marzio HS '10)
Kaytlyn Coleman – Weight Throw – 59-7 3/4 – Kennewick, Wash. (Kennewick HS '11/Lewis-Clark SC)
Kayla Loop – Weight Throw – 55-5 1/2 – Asotin, Wash. (Asotin HS '12)
Emma Murillo – Weight Throw – 61-8 1/4 – Kennewick, Wash. (Southridge HS '10)
Catie Arrigoni – 5,000 – 17:11.83 – Oroville, Wash. (Oroville HS '11/Everett CC)
Catie Arrigoni – 3,000 – (cross-qualified in 5k) – Oroville, Wash. (Oroville HS '11/Everett CC)
Sarah Reiter – 5,000 – 16:47.48 – Renton, Wash. (Lindberg HS '12/Montana State)
Sarah Reiter – 3,000 – (cross-qualified in 5k) – Renton, Wash. (Lindberg HS '12/Montana State)
Rebecca Tarbert – 60m – 7.65 – East Wenatchee, Wash. (Eastmont HS '14)

Returning All-Big Sky Athletes: Men

The following Eagle athletes have earned All-Big Sky Conference honors (top three finish) in previous Big Sky Conference track and field championships (indoors and outdoors):

Brad Michael – (2014 Indoors: 3rd in 400; 2013 Outdoors: 3rd in 400; 2013 Indoors: 2nd in 400;2012 Outdoors: 3rd in 400; 2012 Indoors: 2nd in 400, 3rd in 200)
Phil Puccino
– (2013 Outdoors: 2nd in triple jump; 2012 Indoors: 3rd in triple jump)
Nick Stearns
– (2014 Outdoors: 2nd in pole vault; 2013 Outdoors: 2nd in pole vault; 2012 Indoors: 3rd in pole vault)
4x400 Relay
(2013 Outdoors: 2nd/Kramer Green, Nick Olsson, Brad Michael, Brad Wall; 2012 Indoors: Champion/Collin Green, Michael Okoro, Brad Michael, Brad Wall)
Jordan Arakawa
– (2014 Outdoors: 2nd in hammer throw; 2014 Indoor: Champion in Weight Throw; 2013 Outdoors: 2nd in hammer throw; 2013 Indoors: 2nd in weight throw)
Joey Payne
– (2013 Outdoors: 2nd in javelin)
Trenton Osborn
– (2014 Indoors: 2nd in long jump)

Returning All-Big Sky Athletes: Women

The following Eagle athletes have earned All-Big Sky Conference honors (top three finish) in previous Big Sky Conference track and field championships (indoors and outdoors):

Catie Arrigoni  - (2014 Outdoors: Champion in 3,000 steeplechase, 2nd in 5,000)
Olivia Midles – (2013 Outdoors: 2nd in hammer throw; 2011 Outdoors: 2nd in hammer throw)
Courtney Bray – (2014 Outdoors: Champion in pole vault)
Emma Murillo – (2014 Outdoors: Champion in javelin; 2013 Outdoors: 3rd in hammer throw; 2013 Indoors: 3rd in weight throw)
Katie Mahoney – (2014 Outdoors: 3rd in steeplechase; 2013 Outdoors: 2nd in 3,000 steeplechase)
Sarah Reiter – (2014 Outdoors: 3rd in 10,000)

Season Notes:

Big Sky Conference Preseason Polls: Voting is calculated with each team receiving 11 points for a first place vote, 10 points for a second place vote, etc. Coaches are allowed to vote for their respective teams. Below are the final results with the number of first place votes in parenthesis.

Men's Poll:
Team, Points
1. Northern Arizona, 143 – (11 first-place votes)
2. Sacramento State, 121 – (1 first-place vote)
T3. Montana, 93
T3. Montana State, 93
5. Weber State, 92
6. Eastern Washington, 87
7. Southern Utah, 85
8. Idaho, 77
9. Idaho State, 53
10. Portland State, 47
11. Northern Colorado, 26
12. North Dakota, 19

Women's Poll:
Team, Points
1. Northern Arizona, 141 – (10 first-place votes)
T2. Sacramento State, 111 (1 first-place vote)
T2. Weber State, 111
4. Portland State, 102 (1 first-place vote)
5. Montana State, 96
6. Montana, 95
7. Eastern Washington, 69
8. Idaho, 61
9. Southern Utah, 59
10. Northern Colorado
11. Idaho State, 34
12. North Dakota, 21

Big Sky Leaders – As of Jan. 27, Eastern currently leads the Big Sky in three events on the season: Trenton Osborn in the long jump (23-9 1/2), Jordan Arakawa in the weight throw (64-8), and Courtney Bray in the pole vault (12-9 1/2).

Big Sky Athlete of the Week Recipients – Courtney Bray (Jan. 27)

TOP SEASON PERFORMANCES: Men

Jordan Arakawa – Throws – Olympia, Wash. (Capital HS '10)
Arakawa has thrown over 60 feet in the weight throw at every meet this season, with his season best of 64-8 coming at the UW Preview to place second overall. He currently leads the Big Sky and qualified for the conference championships at the Candy Cane VII with a winning toss of 62-8. He is the current Big Sky Champion in that event and ranks second all-time at Eastern with a mark of 66-1.

Trenton Osborn – Jumps – East Wenatchee, Wash. (Eastmont HS '13)
Osborn won the long jump at the Candy Cane VII for the second year in a row with a personal-best leap of 23-9 1/2, setting a new meet record. That mark qualifies him for the Big Sky Conference championships and ranks ninth all-time at Eastern. His second best jump of the season came at the UW Invite where he had a mark of 22-9 1/4 to place fourth overall.

Jeremy VanAssche – Sprints – East Wenatchee, Wash. (Eastmont HS '14)
At the UW Preview, VanAssche qualified for conference in the 60-meter dash with a time of 6.92 to rank fifth all-time at Eastern. At the UW Invite, VanAssche qualified for the preliminary round of the 60-meter dash where he ran a time of 6.95. The freshman also ran 200-meter time of 22.10 at the UW Preview to rank ninth all-time at Eastern.

Tyree Fort – Sprints – Fayetteville, N.C. (Rogers HS '14)
In his first-ever collegiate meet, Fort qualified for the Big Sky Conference championships in the 60-meter dash with a time of 6.97 – placing second overall and running the seventh fastest time in school history. At the UW Invite, he improved his time to 6.96 in the 60, qualifying him for the preliminary round and moving the freshman up to sixth all-time at Eastern.

Top Season Performances: Women

Catie Arrigoni – Distance – Oroville, Wash. (Oroville HS '11/Everett CC)
Arrigoni has ran a pair of personal bests in the 5,000 (17:11.83) and the mile (5:01.93) to rank third and 10th in school history, respectively.

Courtney Bray – Pole Vault – Mead, Wash. (Mt. Spokane HS '13)
Bray has continued to improve with each vault this season. At the UW Invite, the sophomore had a mark of 12-11 3/4 to rank third in school history. Bray earned Big Sky Athlete of the Week honors after she won the pole vault at the Idaho Collegiate meet with a jump of 12-11 1/2. Bray is the current outdoor champion in the pole vault and ranks third all-time outdoors with a mark of 13-6 1/4.

Anandae Clark – Pole Vault – Nine Mile Falls, Wash. (Lakeside HS '12)
Clark won the pole vault at the Candy Cane VII with a jump of 11-11 3/4, qualifying herself for the BSC Championships. Her season best in the event is 12-5 1/2, achieved at the Idaho Collegiate meet where she placed second.

Kaytlyn Coleman – Throws – Kennewick, Wash. (Kennewick HS '11/Lewis-Clark SC)
Coleman has continued to improve in the weight throw at every meet this season, positing a personal best of 59-7 1/4 to rank fourth in school history at the UW Invite. Her personal best in the shot put of 44-6 1/4 ranks her 10th all-time at Eastern.

Kelsie Forcier – Throws – Port Orchard, Wash. (South Kitsap HS '12)
Forcier had a pair of personal-records in the weight throw (55-2 1/4) and the shot put (44-7 1/2) at the Idaho Collegiate meet. She now ranks ninth in each event on Eastern's All-Time best list.

Paula Gil-Echevarria – Distance – Madrid, Spain
Gil-Echevarria broke an 11-year-old school record in the mile with a time of 4:54.37 at the UW Invite.

Jozie Kimes – Jumps/Multi. – Cashmere, Wash. (Cashmere HS '12)
Kimes got the Candy Cane VII off to a strong start by becoming Eastern's first Big Sky qualifier of the season with a victory in the pentathlon and scoring 3,359 points – just one point shy of the school record of 3,360.

Kayla Loop – Throws – Asotin, Wash. (Asotin HS '12)
Loop booked her ticket to the conference championships when she won the weight throw at the Candy Cane VII with a personal-best toss of 55-5 1/2 to rank eighth all-time at Eastern.

Morena Mannucci – Jumps – Rome, Italy (Anco Marzio HS '10)
Mannucci punched her ticket to the conference meet in the triple jump with a mark of 39-2 1/4 to rank second all-time at Eastern, nearly missing the school record of 39-2 1/2.

Katie Mahoney – Distance – Richland, Wash. (Richland HS '11)
At the UW Invite, Mahoney ran a pair of personal bests in the mile (4:56.07) and the 800 (2:17.60) to rank fourth and 10th in school history.

Emma Murillo – Throws – Kennewick, Wash. (Southridge HS '10)
Murillo had a huge personal best at the UW Invite of 61-8 1/4, winning the event to rank second in school history. She qualified for the conference championships at the Idaho Collegiate meet with a toss of 57-2 1/4.

Sarah Reiter – Distance – Renton, Wash. (Lindbergh HS '12/Montana State)
Reiter qualified for the conference championships in the 5,000 at the UW Invite with a time of 16:47.48 to rank second in school history. In her first race since her individual Big Sky Conference cross country title, Reiter ran a time of 10:00.57 in the 3,000 at the UW Preview, improving her third place ranking on Eastern's all-time best list.

Rebecca Tarbert – Sprints – East Wenatchee, Wash. (Eastmont HS '14)
At the UW Invite, Tarbert qualified for the elite finals in the 60-meter dash where she ran a time of 7.65 which qualified her for conference and ranks her second all-time at Eastern as a freshman.

Tierra White – Jumps – Spokane, Wash. (John R. Rogers HS '14)
At the Idaho Collegiate meet, White jumped 5-5 in the high jump to rank 10th in school history.

Links:

2014-15 Track & Field Online Guide: http://www.goeags.com/sports/c-track/onlineguide
EWU Track and Field - http://goeags.com/sports/c-track/index
Big Sky Indoor Track and Fieldhttp://bigskyconf.com/index.aspx?path=itf&
NCAA Track and Field - http://www.ncaa.com
TFRRS- Track & Field Results Reporting System - http://www.tfrrs.org
USTFCCCA- U.S. Track & Field & Cross Country Coaches Association - http://www.ustfccca.org/

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