May 30, 2003
STANFORD, Calif. -- Washington State University's track and field competitors found both highs and lows during the first day of events at the debut NCAA West Regional Track & Field Meet at Cobb Track and Angell Field on the Stanford campus.
The top five places in each event will advance to the NCAA Div. I Outdoor Track & Field Championships June 11-14, at Sacramento. An additional six to eight additional participants in each event will be selected from among the four regional meets to compete as at large entrants at the national championships.
One Cougar can pack his bags for Sacramento. Kurtiss Dilley, a junior from nearby Elverta, Calif., cleared 6-feet, 11 3/4 inches (2.13m) in the high jump for fifth place and automatically qualified for the NCAA Championships. Dilley has already grabbed All-American honors with his fifth place finish at the 2003 NCAA Indoor Championships after a PR leap of 7-1 1/2 (2.17m).
In the near miss category, Anna Blue (senior, Olympia, Wash.) led the women's 5000m race through the first two laps and was in fourth place after 4000m but could not hold on to a top-five spot, finishing sixth in a time of 16:32.26. Sophomore Rachel Bertholf (Colbert, Wash.) finished sixth in the javelin with a lifetime-best throw of 155-feet, 8 inches (47.45m), missing fifth place and a trip to the NCAA meet by a mere two inches. BYU's Missy Wood threw 155-10 (47.50m) for fifth place.
Bennie Chatman (senior, Houston, Texas) was the only Cougar qualifier in the men's 100m dash with a time of 10.48 seconds, third best on the day. Anthony Buchanan (junior, Spokane, Wash.) did not qualify for the final after finishing 12th in the prelims with a time of 11.34. Cougar Head Coach Rick Sloan said Buchanan's hamstring pull from the Pac-10 Championships earlier this month is obviously still bothering him. Buchanan was the West Regional leader coming into the day's races with a time of 10.10w and Chatman's top time of 10.12w was second-best in the West. Oregon's Samie Parker had the top prelim time of 10.34.
The Cougar men's 4x100m relay team (Lamarr Kirk, Chatman, James McSwain, Buchanan) will also be watching the final from the grandstands as a miss-timed second handoff and was disqualified. USC ran the top time in the prelims of 40.42. WSU's squad had the top time going into the meet at 39.68.
In the javelin competition, Cougars Jenna Dean (freshman, Glenwood, Wash.) tied for 12th with a toss of 141-9 (43.22m), and Ellannee Richardson (senior, Gladstone, Ore.) finished 20th with a throw of 133-7 (40.72m).
Tamara Diles (redshirt freshman, Bellevue, Wash.) finished tied for 16th in the pole vault after clearing 12-6 1/4 (3.82m). Oregon's Becky Holliday broke the collegiate record with a clearance at 14-8 (4.47m).
Other men's field events results found Sam Lightbody (junior, Huntington Beach, Calif.) eighth in the discus with a throw of 178-6 (54.41m), and Tim Gehring (junior, Kettle Falls, Wash.) 12th in the hammer with a throw of 187-7 (57.15m).
In addition to Chatman in the men's 100m dash, WSU had four more qualifiers for Saturday's final running events. Tiffany Giles (senior, Seattle, Wash.) had the fifth-best 400m dash prelim time of 53.97. Richardson's 13.59w was the eighth-best time in the 100m hurdles and Monique Jessie (junior, Compton, Calif.) ran 59.77 in the 400m hurdles prelims, seventh-fastest overall. Eric Dudley won his heat of the men's 400m hurdles with a time of 52.10, fourth-fastest of the prelims.
Cougars competing Friday but not advancing in the 100m hurdles are Tamara Gulley (junior, San Jose, Calif.) finished 10th in 13.75w, and Diana Pickler (freshman, Sasche, Texas) finished 16th with a time of 13.99w.
In the team scoring after five events Friday, the WSU women's team was 11th with six points, and the Cougar men were also 11th with five points. Stanford claimed the first-day lead in both the men's and women's team standings. Competition resumes Saturday at 10 a.m. and concludes at 6:30 p.m.