April 11, 2009
LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- World class hurdler Jeshua Anderson led the Washington State track and field performers Saturday in the invitational events of the Rafer Johnson/Jackie Joyner-Kersee Invitational track and field meet at UCLA's Drake Stadium.
Anderson, a sophomore from Woodland Hills, Calif., won the men's 400m hurdles and lowered his NCAA Regional Qualifying time to 49.44 seconds. Trevor Habberstad, a sophomore from Santa Clarita, Calif., became the fourth Cougar man to reach NCAA RQ in the intermediate hurdles with a fifth-place finish in a lifetime-best time of 52.47, after running a PR time Friday of 53.51 in the open race. J Hopkins, a freshman from Everett, took sixth place in the intermediate hurdles with a time of 53.39.
Anderson also improved his NCAA RQ time in the 110m hurdles with his sixth-place finish of 14.20.
The 800m races were good ones for the Cougs Saturday afternoon. Luke Lemenager (junior, Maple Valley, Wash.) ran an NCAA RQ and PR time of 1:49.92 for sixth place and freshman Joe Abbott (Reno) ran a PR time of 1:51.98 for 11th place in the men's race. In the women's invite race, Lisa Egami (junior, Coquitlam, B.C.) improved her 800m NCAA RQ and PR time with her second-place finish in 2:08.16.
In the shorter races, Reny Follett ran a season-best 400m dash time of 47.95 for fifth place and Justin Woods' 200m time of 21.53 is a season-best and seventh place. Princess Joy Griffey clocked in a 100m dash time of 11.96 for seventh place, and ran a season-best 24.36 in the 200m (10th).
Jalisa Williams ran a 100m hurdles time of 14.80 for eighth. Veronica Elseroad-Wall ran a season-best 400m hurdles time of 1:00.92 for sixth place while Lorraine King finished seventh in a time of 1:01.13, and Brittnay Crabb ran a time of 1:03.78 for 10th.
The WSU men's 4x400m relay team of Anderson, Hopkins, Abbott and Woods took fifth in a time of 3:13.40. The Cougars women's 4x400m relay team of Griffey, Crabb, King, Elseroad-Wall finished sixth in a time of 3:44.32, and a women's "B" team finished 11th in a time of 4:00.70.
In the women's 1500m, Sara Trané ran a season-best time of 4:30.25 for sixth and Marisa Sandoval finished 11th in a time of 4:52.61. Dominic Smargiassi took seventh place in the men's mile with a time of 4:17.72.
"We had a good number of performances here that we can be very pleased with and they show that we are moving in the right direction," WSU Head Coach Rick Sloan said. "I was also pleased with how well the kids competed. They were winning races and in contention in races. Cougars were very prominently visible during the competition today. We had a lot of things to be excited about."
A selected group of Washington State competitors will compete in the Mt. SAC Relays next weekend in Walnut, Calif.
More quotes from Cougar Head Coach Rick Sloan: "Trevor did a great job. He ran a lifetime-best on Friday and then came back today, made a great effort and ran a much smarter, stronger race and got 52.47. I'm real happy with that. Having four WSU men qualified in the intermediate hurdles is great but I think there will be three Cougar women joining them before long. Seven 400m hurdlers would be great.
"Lisa Egami is a perfect example of someone that we're pleased with the time, and we're also pleased with the competitive effort as well. She ran in second but was closing in on first place but just didn't get there. She ran a very even race and a very smart race. She really looked great the last 150 meters, her leg speed was up and she was just flying down the straightaway. She is competing very well right now and running great.
"Luke Lemenager ran the first time under 1:50. It was a terrific performance by him. He won his section, taking a lead with about 350 meters to go, went to the front of the pack and just started charging and was strong all the way. It was off about a 54-second first lap and Coach Drake thinks Luke runs his best when he runs slow on his first lap and really flies on his second. That is exactly what he did in this race. It was a barrier-breaker. When you break 7-feet in the high jump or pole vault 17-feet, you throw the shot 60m, or you run under 1:50 in the 800m, your mindset changes. You almost feel validated as an 800m runner. `I'm a sub-1:50 guy, I run 1:49.' I think this is going to move him on down and he'll continue to improve.
"Our whole distance crew, for the most part, really performed well here. Sam Ahlbeck looked terrific running his race. Joe Abbott is starting to get there now, he needs some more races, needs to get a little more strength and speed and he'll progress nicely. Probably the highlight of the meet for me was Emily Farrar in the steeplechase Friday night. Second time she has ever run the race with a regional qualifying time and 3 seconds off the school freshman record. That is a heck of an event for Emily to come along that quickly. I'm excited about that.
Veronica Elseroad-Wall ran Friday and Saturday and both times was just flying until about the eighth hurdle and then the ninth or 10th hurdle, kind of missed her steps. In both races she was leading the race at the eighth hurdle. Lorraine King got her in the first race and a couple of other gals passed her in the invite race. Just missing her steps a little, killing her momentum and missed the regional mark by 1/10 of a second today. Then she came out and ran a good relay leg in the 4x4. She is really coming on strong. Brittnay Crabb ran a 55.6 leg on the relay. She is trying to race too hard right now and is overrunning the hurdle so if she backs off a little and hits her stride pattern then she can finish strong and she'll finish under 60-seconds. All three of these women could run under 60-seconds in the intermediate hurdles if all goes well at the end of the year.
"Justin Woods ran better than he has run in a couple of years. His 100m time of 10.52 was a nice looking run, wind legal and regional qualifier. I'm really happy with that run."