Feb. 14, 2004
SEATTLE, Wash. -- Cougars Matt Mason and Marie Muai broke Washington State University indoor field event records at the University of Washington-hosted Pac-10 Invitational Track & Field Meet Saturday, at the Dempsey Indoor Facility.
Mason, a junior who transferred to WSU at the start of spring semester, won the long jump with a facility record and an NCAA Automatic Qualifying mark of 25-feet, 10 inches (7.87m). Mason's leap eclipsed the WSU indoor school long jump record of 25-9 1/4 set by Bill Ayears in 1988. Mason, from Marietta, Ga., also finished second in the 60m hurdles Saturday with a time of 7.91 but ran an NCAA Provisional Qualifying time of 7.80 last week in Nebraska.
Muai, a junior from Tacoma, Wash., bettered her 20-pound weight throw school record by two inches with a toss of 62-10 (19.15m) for third place in the meet. She threw this school record with her first attempt in the competition Saturday.
While Mason was the only Cougar winner at the meet, WSU athletes bettered 32 lifetime-best marks.
In women's competition, Nicole Hatcher (sophomore, Kennewick, Wash.) was fourth in the 60m dash (7.69) and fifth in the 200m dash with a season-best time of 24.96. Nicole McClendon (freshman, Granada Hills, Calif.) improved both her 60m (7.95) and 200m (25.50) dash times with seventh and eighth-place finishes respectively. Brandi Probasco-Canda (freshman, Portland, Ore.) was seventh in the 200m (25.26).
Seniors Louise Akesson (Lyckeby, Sweden) and Monique Jessie (Compton, Calif.) finished fifth and sixth in the 400m dash with times of 56.88 for Akesson and 57.05 for Jessie. Diana Pickler (sophomore, Sachse, Texas) took fifth place in the 60m hurdles (8.58) and tied for fifth in the high jump with teammate Robin Mikesh (sophomore, Sumner, Wash.) at the height of 5-5 3/4 (1.67m).
The Cougar women's 4x400m relay ran a season-best time of 3:44.61 for second place. The squad consisted of Jessie, Angelita Green (senior, Long Beach, Calif.), Probasco-Canda and Akesson, with Probasco-Canda running a 54.2 third leg.
Blessing Ufodiama (senior, Long Beach, Calif.) competing in both the long and triple jumps for the first time this year, finished seventh in the long jump (18-9 3/4) and second in the triple jump at 40-9 3/4. Last week at Nebraska, Ufodiama set the school indoor triple jump record with an NCAA PQ mark of 42-3 1/2 (12.89).
In men's events, Martin Boston (sophomore, Hayward, Calif.) had a good day with a third-place finish in the 60m dash in a time of 6.90, but ran a PR of 6.88 in the prelims. Boston also ran a PR in the 200m with an eighth-place finish time of 22.01.
Dione Cason (redshirt sophomore, Long Beach, Calif.) had a very good day with a fourth-place finish in the 400m in a PR time of 48.03. Freshman John Cassleman (Pullman, Wash.) finished eighth in the 400m with a PR time of 48.13.
"Coaches Ellannee Richardson and Mark Macdonald are doing a great job with the sprinters and hurdlers," Sloan said. "All seven Cougar men in the 400m ran season-bests today and five of them ran lifetime bests. The 4x400m relay had a great run with Qieed running a 47.7 time in the anchor leg. This relay will get even faster when Matt Mason is thrown into the mix."
In the men's field events, Matt Alverson (senior, Everett, Wash.) finished sixth in the high jump with a clearance at 6-4 3/4 (1.95m). Following Mason's win in the long jump, WSU's Alex Jones (junior, Clovis, Calif.) placed seventh with a leap of 22-5 1/4 (6.84m). In the triple jump, Ben Hampton (sophomore, Kennewick, Wash.) finished fifth (14.63m/48-0) and Peter Rizzardi (senior, Seattle) was seventh (14.38m/47-2 1/4).
Tim Gehring (senior, Kettle Falls, Wash.), coming off a injured back, finished fourth in the shot put with a toss of 60-6 (18.44m).
"Overall I'm happy with a lot of the marks we got out of this meet and I'm happy with the way people are competing," Cougar Head Coach Rick Sloan said. "Our objective now is to get back to work and get the next two weeks under our belt and get prepared for the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championships."
The Cougars men's and women's team will compete at the Vandal Indoor Meet, Feb. 20, and at the McDonald's Open Meet, Feb. 20-21, both at the Kibbie Dome at Moscow, Idaho. The MPSF Indoor Championships take place Feb. 26-28, back at the Dempsey Indoor Facility on the University of Washington campus.