Willamette Set to Battle NWC Opponents at Charles Bowles Track

Bearcats to Host Conference Championships

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette University is prepared to battle George Fox University and other challengers in women's track and field this weekend, as the Bearcats host the 2013 Northwest Conference Championships at the Charles Bowles Track. The competition begins on Friday, April 26 and continues through Saturday, April 27.

Last year, George Fox built a lead in the heptathlon and held off the Bearcats throughout the meet, as the Bruins won the title for the second season in a row. Willamette finished second. This spring, the Bruins have a 16-point advantage following the heptathlon, but Willamette has strength in a number of events.

On Friday, field events will begin at 12:30 p.m. (PDT) with the men's hammer throw. Additional field events will start at 2 p.m., and the first event on the track will begin at 2 p.m. On Saturday, the first field event will be the women's hammer throw at 9 a.m. Other field events will begin at 10:30 a.m. and the first event on the track is set for 12 p.m.

All events will be held at the Charles Bowles Track, located at McCulloch Stadium, except for the two hammer throw competitions, which will take place behind the Math Learning Center at 1850 Oxford Street in Salem, Ore.

Admission is free for NWC students and children under 5 years old, $5 for other students and $10 for adults.

Sprints & Hurdles

Allanah Whitehall from Puget Sound has the best time in the 100-meter dash this season at 12.40. Other top runners in the 100 include Sarah Frazier of George Fox at 12.72 and Emily Wyatt of GFU at 12.74. Kylea Johnson (Fr., Onalaska WA/Onalaska HS) of Willamette owns a top time of 12.81.

Rachael Kraske of George Fox owns the top time in the 200-meter dash (26.01) and 400-meter dash (59.14). She is third in the 100-meter hurdles (15.56).

Contenders in the 200 include Amanda Wilson of Pacific Lutheran at 26.26, Kelli Aken-Pagdilao of Pacific at 26.27 and Whitehall at 26.28. Key runners in the 400 are Madison Guscott of PLU at 59.97, Ashland Bernard (Fr., Kirkland, WA/Juanita HS) from Willamette at 1:00.82 and Carmela Roberts of Willamette at 1:00.97.

Leaders in the 100-meter hurdles are Charity Arn of GFU at 15.34 and Christina Dobbins of Whitworth at 15.40. Elisa Ahern (So., Lake Forest Park, WA/Shorecrest HS) of Willamette has a time of 15.68 and Bekah Daniel (So., Silverdale, WA/Central Kitsap HS) of WU has a time of 15.84.

In the 400 hurdles, Emily Moore of Whitworth has the best time among entries at 1:06.76. Olivia Fleming from GFU is at 1:06.79. Emily Thompson from L&C owns a time of 1:07.05.

Distance

All of the middle distance and long distance champions from 2012 are back to defend their titles. Theresa Edwards (Sr., Lake Tapps, WA/Bonney Lake HS) of Willamette won the 800-meter run in 2:18.45 and the 1,500-meter run in 4:43.44.

Challengers in the 800 include Erynn Rebol (Sr., Cottonwood, CA/Red Bluff Union HS)  of Willamette at 2:16.31 and Heather Spurling of L&C at 2:19.08. In the 1,500, Michaela Freeby (So., Milwaukie, OR/Rex Putnam HS) of the Bearcats is at 4:41.68 with Spurling at 4:44.84.

Emily Thomas from L&C returns after winning the 5,000 and the 10,000. She leads the NWC with a time of 17:16.80 in the 5,000 this year, while Spurling follows at 17:47.29. Juliet Farnan (Fr., Lafayette, CA/Campolindo HS) of WU has achieved a time of 18:20.96.

In the 10,000, Emily Painter of GFU has the top time this spring at 37:12.12. Contenders are Christina Anderson of Whitworth at 37:48.58 and Siena Noe of Linfield at 38:14.88.

Freeby of Willamette is the defending champion in the 3,000-meter steeplechase. She won in 11:08.91 in 2012. Taylor Ostrander (Fr., Soldotna, AK/Kenai Central HS) of Willamette has a time of 11:25.11, while Kellyn Roiko of Whitworth has been timed at 11:39.98.

Vertical & Horizontal Jumps

Christina Dobbins of Whitworth leads the high jumpers at 5’ 6”, while Maria Green of GFU is second at 5’ 5.75”. Beth Stam of GFU is at 5’ 4.50”. Maya Bowton of Willamette and Chloe Hallyburton from Pacific have both cleared 5’ 3”.

The top height in the pole vault belongs to Dannah Martin of GFU and Kelly Yelverton of L&C, both at 11’ 5.75”. At third on the list is Kierstie Shellman of Whitworth (11’3.75”).

In the long jump, Emily Wyatt of George Fox owns the top distance of 2013 at 18’ 10”. Dobbins is second at 17’5.25”, with Green in third at 17’ 2.75”. Bekah Daniel of Willamette has jumped 16' 9.25".

Elisa Ahern of Willamette will defend her triple jump title. Last year, her distance was 36’ 1.50”. Daniel, also from WU, leads all entries this year at 37’6”, with Ahern at 37’ 3.75”. Whitworth’s Rachel Palmquist is next at 35’ 9.50”.

Throws

The champions from 2012 in all four throwing events are back to defend their titles. Anna LaBeaume of Linfield won the shot put with a toss of 42’ 9” and the hammer at 152’10”. Samantha Potter of PLU was first in the discus at 136’6”, and Chelsea Nelson of PLU won the javelin at 126’ 8”.

Challengers in the shot put include Potter at 42’ 7” this spring, as well as Mary Data of Whitworth at 39’10”. Both Marisa Gonzalez of PLU and Beth Stam of GFU has earned a distance of 39’ 8”.

In the discus, Potter will battle top contenders Courtney Fairhart of Whitworth, who has thrown 136’ 10.25” and Elke Neuenschwander of Whitworth, who has gone 132’ 11”.

LaBeaume owns a throw of 170’ 2” this year in the hammer. Other top competitors are Jorgina Moore from PLU at 159’11” and Dakota Kliamovich of Whitworth at 158’ 11”.

The top javelin throw of the season is held by Kerry Wright of Whitworth with a toss of 149’ 0”. Stam of GFU has gone 145’ 1” and Green of GFU has achieved a throw of 130’ 5”. Meka Townsend (Fr., Okanogan, WA/Okanogan HS) of Willamette is ranks fourth with a toss of 129' 4".

Relays

Last season, Linfield took first place in the 4 x 100-meter at 48.67 and George Fox won the 4 x 400-meter relay in 3:56.99. Willamette earned second place in both relays. In 2013, the top time in the 4 x 100 is 49.77 by Linfield. The Wildcats also possess the top time in the 4 x 400 at 4:06.30.

Team Title

George Fox is after its third consecutive NWC team title. The Bruins are off to a good start with 24 points after the heptathlon. Willamette has eight points and Whitworth has seven.

GFU won last year with a score of 207. Willamette, which finished second a year ago, is a top challenger to the title. Willamette won the NWC championship nine years in a row from 2002-10. Whitworth, which last won the NWC title in 2001, will battle the Bruins and the Bearcats this season.

Note:  For a schedule of events, use the link just above the photo of Michaela Freeby.


OFFICIAL WEBSITE

Northwest Conference
Track & Field Championships
Charles Bowles Track
Salem, Ore.
April 26-27, 2013

Schedule of Events

Michaela Freeby of Willamette won the NWC title in the 3,000-meter steeplechase last season.

Michaela Freeby of Willamette won the NWC title in the 3,000-meter steeplechase last season.

Elisa Ahern won the triple jump for Willamette at the NWC Championships in 2012.

Elisa Ahern won the triple jump for Willamette at the NWC Championships in 2012.