WSU Track Divides to Conquer in Travel to Boise, Seattle

Feb. 7, 2006

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COUGARS DIVIDE AND CONQUER THIS WEEKEND: Washington State University's indoor track and field teams travel in opposite directions this weekend for meets in Southern Idaho, and Seattle, Wash...results from both meets will be posted on the WSU Athletics website,, when available Saturday night.

HOLIDAY INN TEAM INVITE: The Holiday Inn Team Invite, hosted by Boise State University, is held at the Idaho Sports Center/Jacksons Indoor Track in Nampa, Idaho...while there will be team scoring, WSU is only sending a small contingent of competitors...teams include Boise State, Cal State Stanislaus, Colorado State, Portland State, South Dakota and Utah State...this meet begins Friday, Feb. 10, at 6 p.m. MT and the Saturday events run from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. MT.

HUSKY CLASSIC MEET: The Husky Classic is a Feb. 11 meet only, with events taking place in the Dempsey Indoor facility on the University of Washington campus...individuals from across the country are scheduled to compete in this meet...the Cougars will return to this venue later this month for the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championships...field events begin at 9 a.m., running events commence at 10:45 a.m. with the final race at 4:35 p.m.

ABOUT THE COUGAR COACHES: Head coach Rick Sloan is in his 33rd season with the Cougar track program; 12th year as a head coach, 11th year as mentor to the combined men's and women's program...he is joined by associate coach Debra Farwell, and assistant coaches Jason Drake (Head Coach Cross Country), Mark Macdonald, Ellannee Richardson and Matt McGee...volunteer coach Andrea Thornton returns for her third year with the program.

NATIONAL RANKINGS: WSU's women's team is ranked T18th in the Trackwire Online Top 25 national poll...this is the first week WSU women have been ranked...South Carolina women are ranked first...Pac-10 schools ranked (women) this week (Feb. 7) include Stanford (5th), Arizona State (9th), USC (T10th), UCLA (16th), and Oregon (T21st)...two Cougars are included in Trackwire Online's Dandy Dozen list of the 2006 indoor season...the Dandy Dozen is, a power ranking of the top 12 athletes and relay squads in each NCAA event...All-Americans Tamara Diles (pole vault, 8th) and multi-events specialist Julie Picker (1st).

M-I-A COUGARS: Junior Diana Pickler (Sachse, Texas) is out of competition indefinitely after injuring her foot during the pentathlon at the Cougar Indoor meet Jan. 27...Pickler, an All-American pentathlete and heptathlete during the 2005 seasons, will use the next remaining indoor season to rehabilitate...she had reached NCAA Provisional Qualifying marks in the high jump and 60m hurdles already this season...another Cougar All-American, junior pole vaulter Tyson Byers, has a strained hamstring and will be evaluated weekly. COUGARS'

SCHOOL RECORDS: Julie Pickler broke her sister Diana's 2005 school record in the pentathlon Jan. 27 at the Cougar Indoor Meet...Pickler scored an NCAA Automatic Qualifying mark of 4,180 points to win the event and she is the current national leader for this event....freshman Robert Williams broke the WSU men's indoor freshman mark for the 60m hurdles with his 8.18 seconds in winning the event at the Cougar Indoor Jan. 28...Williams had tied the record of 8.23 the previous weekend at the WSU Open.

NOTABLE: James McSwain (senior, Las Vegas) has won the 60m dash in each of the three indoor meets this year...the same can be said for freshman Robert Williams and the 60m hurdles...Mike Heidt will run the 5k this weekend in Seattle, the first time a Cougar has run that distance indoors this season...thrower Jessica Zita has competed unattached this season and is back in uniform this weekend due to NCAA rules limiting two-day meets to a limit of six for the indoor season...her events, the weight throw and shot put are usually on different days.

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