SEATTLE -- Washington State’s Jesse Jorgensen was an upset winner in the men’s 800m Saturday at the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Indoor Track & Field Championships at the Dempsey Indoor Facility in Seattle.
Jorgensen, a redshirt junior from Puyallup, Wash., ran a lifetime-best time of 1 minute 48.84 seconds to win the 800m title among a highly-contested field. Jorgensen’s time is currently 16th-best among NCAA Division I men which would advance him to the national meet in two weeks.
“Jesse ran off the pace a little and kept himself in the right position. With 250 meters to go he moved to the front, took control of this race and held everybody off,” WSU Head Coach Rick Sloan said. “I was exciting to see him win and run a lifetime best time.”
”I planned on staying in the top three for the race and then trying to out-kick them and that’s pretty much what happened,” Jorgensen said. “There was a rabbit in the race and he took it out really fast. I went out in a 51-high for the first 400m which is very fast.”
Jacob Sealby (redshirt junior, Wenatchee, Wash.) took fourth place in the men’s 400m dash with a time of 47.45. CJ Allen finished 10th with a PR time of 48.29 and Lucas Sealby was 18th with a time of 49.38. At the end of the meet the WSU men’s 4x400m relay squad of Allen, Jacob Sealby, Lucas Sealby and Jorgensen ended the meet with a third place and season-best time of 3:11.10.
Freshman Dino Dodig (Novi Sad, Serbia) took third place in the men’s heptathlon with a PR of 5,503 points, the second-best total in WSU all-time records. Dodig, who injured his left leg in Friday’s long jump, opened the second day of the heptathlon with a 60m hurdles time of 8.37 seconds, cleared a PR height of 15-feet 7 inches (4.75m) in the pole vault, and ran the 1000m in a time of 2:40.94. UCLA’s Marcus Nilsson won the heptathlon with 5,665 points.
Charlotte Muschamp (redshirt junior, Edendale, New Zealand), who was competing in the high jump and the triple jump in the same hour, soared to a distance of 40-4 (12.29m) for third place in the triple jump after not clearing a bar in the high jump. Holly Parent (senior, Victoria, B.C.) took eighth place in the women’s high jump after clearing the bar at 5-6 (1.68m).
Thane Pierson (sophomore, Naches, Wash.) high jumped a PR height of 6-11 (2.11m) to tie for fourth place. Cole Smith took 12th after clearing the bar at 6-7 (2.01m). PJ Benedictus (junior, Renton, Wash.) finished fifth in the men’s triple jump with a PR leap of 49-7 1/4 (15.12m). Tay’lor Eubanks was ninth with a season-best triple jump of 47-9 1/4 (14.56m).
Ruby Roberts (senior, Kingston, Wash.) took fifth place in the women’s 3000m with a time of 9:16.30, and CharLee Linton ran a PR time of 9:51.52 for 26th place.
Candice McFarland (redshirt sophomore, Las Vegas) grabbed fifth place in the women’s 60m hurdles final with a PR time of 8.50 which is the ninth-fastest time in WSU all-time records.
The women’s 4x400m relay squad of Bree Winfrey, Christiana Ekelem, Dominique Keel and Erin Allen placed sixth with a season-best time of 3:40.93.
Other Cougars competing Saturday included Abby Regan ran a PR time in the mile of 4:53.30 for 12th place while in the men’s mile Lee George took 14th in 4:09.21, Andrew Kimpel finished 15th in 4:09.52, and Jackson Haselnus took 21st in 4:14.13. Matthew Swanson took 12th place in the men’s 800m with a time of 1:54.16. In the women’s 800m Leanne Asper was 19th in 2:16.52 and Steffie Pavey was 20th with a PR time of 2:16.99. Mary Barnett was 12th in the women’s shot put with a distance of 43-9 3/4 (13.35m) and Matt Wardell was 15th in the men’s shot put with a heave of 51-11 (15.82m).
The California men won the team championship with 96 points followed by Arizona State’s 93 points. The WSU finished in eighth with 49.5 points just one-half point behind Washington in seventh-place with 50 points. The USC women won the women’s team title with 106 points followed by Arizona State’s 81 points. The WSU women finished in 10th place with 28.5 points, just one-half point behind Colorado and a half point ahead of Washington.
Coach Rick Sloan said, “It was a very competitive meet and I thought we came in and competed hard and were competitive in a lot of areas. Among the top highlights for us were Jesse Jorgensen winning the 800m in a lifetime best and Kristine Felix placing second in the pole vault for the second year. As usual she comes up big in big meets all the time now. Charlotte Muschamp struggled with the high jump but turned it around and came back to get third in the triple jump.
“Dino Dodig medaled in the heptathlon in spite of smashing his shin in the long jump Friday. But he just kept competing his way through the pain. Today he came back and competed well in the hurdles and pole vault and then ran a gutsy 1000m to move up from fourth to third place. Thane Pierson high jumped a PR for the second week in a row and had a good attempt at 7-1. That is encouraging that he’s coming along. Alissa Brooks-Johnson was strong and competitive with another lifetime-best and school freshman record in the pentathlon.
“I thought our 5000m guys ran well with Drew Jordan fifth and a lifetime best for Andrew Kimpel for sixth and nearly outscored all the other teams in that event. And the DMR squad getting a fourth place was good for us. Unfortunately Todd Wakefield had some Achilles tendonitis and was pretty sore so we held him out.
“We had a lot of lifetime best marks at this meet. It is good to get some momentum as we move to the outdoor season. Some people who have been struggling during the indoor season got it going a little bit in this meet so I’m hoping they can keep that momentum as we move outdoors and see them perform up at the level that we expect from them and what they expect of themselves.”
The NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships competition is set for March 14-15, in Albuquerque. WSU begins the 2014 outdoor season March 22 with a dual meet against UCLA in Westwood, Calif.