Pac-12 track and field athletes of the week

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Pac-12 Conference outdoor track and field athlete of the week honors for the week of April 25-May 1:

Men’s Track Athlete of the Week: IZAIC YORKS, WASHINGTON (Sr., Lakewood, Wash.). Senior Izaic Yorks beat an elite field of mostly professionals, including former Olympians, to win the 1,500 meter race at the Payton Jordan Invitational at Stanford. He ran the fastest time in the NCAA this season, and the No. 6 time in the world, leading wire-to-wire before eventually crossing the finish line in a time of 3:37.74. That time also broke the school record of 3:39.63 which had stood since 2009. Yorks is the third distance runner from the Husky program to win Pac-12 Men’s Track Athlete of the Week honors this season.

Women’s Track Athlete of the Week: OLIVIA BAKER, STANFORD (So., Maplewood, N.J.). Sophomore Olivia Baker took the collegiate lead in the 800 meters with a time of 2:01.02, which is also just under the Olympic standard of 2:01.50. Only two women in the world had run under Baker’s time outdoors this year before this past weekend. Baker was fourth and the top collegian against a collection of top open runners in the field at the Payton Jordan Invitational while improving upon her lifetime best by nearly three seconds. Baker strengthens her spot at No. 4 at Stanford all-time while debuting at No. 9 on the all-time Pac-12 list.

Men’s Field Athlete of the Week: THANE PIERSON, WASHINGTON STATE (Sr., Naches, Wash.). Senior Thane Pierson high jumped his personal-best height of 7-feet, 3 inches (2.21m) at the 16th-Annual Cougar Invitational in Pullman, Wash. His jump is the seventh-best in WSU history, tied for sixth-best in the nation and is second-best in the Pac-12 this season. He eclipsed the meet record of 6-10 3/4 (2.10m) set by WSU’s Matt Alverson in 2001. Pierson’s winning leap came on his third and final attempt at the height.

Women’s Field Athlete of the Week: VALARIE ALLMAN, STANFORD (Jr., Longmont, Colo.). Defending Pac-12 discus champion Valarie Allman is the Pac-12 Women’s Field Athlete of the Week for the second-straight week and the fourth time this season. Also a first team All-American, she set a lifetime best in the discus for the third time this season and the second-consecutive meet. She threw a 193-5 (58.96m) to win the event at the Payton Jordan Invitational, a 2 1/2-foot improvement over her pervious best.  The mark strengthens her spot at No. 2 all-time at Stanford and is closing to within two inches of the Pac-12 all-time top-10 list. Allman is now No. 7 on the season on the collegiate list. Allan also had a throw of 190-7 (58.10m) to place seventh in the hammer at the meet. 

2016 Pac-12 Track & Field Athletes of the Week
Men’s Track: March 22 — Devon Allen, ORE; March 29 — Ricky Morgan, USC; April 5 — Aaron Nelson, WASH; April 12 — Colby Gilbert, WASH; April 19 Devon Allen, ORE; April 26 — Jackson Shumway, STAN; May 2 — Izaic Yorks, WASH.

Women’s Track: March 22 — Annie Leblanc, ORE; March 29 — Jaide Stepter, USC; April 5 — Erin Clark, STAN; April 12 — Sage Watson, ARIZ; April 19 — Hannah Cunliffe, ORE; April 26 — Nnenya Hailey, ARIZ; May 2 — Olivia Baker, STAN.

Men’s Field: March 22 — Cody Danielson, ORE; March 29 — Adoree’ Jackson, USC; April 5 — Harrison Williams, STAN; April 12 — Pau Tonnesen, ARIZ; April 19 — Nicholas Scarvelis, UCLA; April 26 — Nicholas Scarvelis, UCLA; May 2 — Thane Pierson, WSU.

Women’s Field: March 22 — Valarie Allman, STAN; March 29 — Maggie Ewen, ASU; April 5 — Tera Novy, USC; April 12 — Valarie Allman, STAN; April 19 — Tera Novy, USC; April 26 — Valarie Allman, STAN; May 2 — Valarie Allman, STAN.

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