Pickler, Diles Runners-up at MPSF Indoor Track Championships

Feb. 24, 2006


SEATTLE, Wash. - Washington State's Julie Pickler and Tamara Diles were runners-up in their events during the first day of competition at the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Indoor Track & Field Championships at the Dempsey Facility at the University of Washington Friday.

Pickler, a junior from Sachse, Texas, finished second among the 17-women in the pentathlon with 4,142 points, less than her school record and NCAA Automatic Qualifying mark of 4,180 points set last month. Katie Miller, a senior from Vancouver, Wash., finished 13th with 3,533 points. Arizona State's Jacquelyn Johnson won the pentathlon with 4,207 points, surpassing Pickler as the national leader.

Pickler ran the 60m hurdles in a personal-best time of 8.60 seconds, and equaled her season-best high jump at 5-feet, 8 3/4 inches (1.75m). Pickler threw the shot put a PR distance of 38-3 1/4 (11.66m), had the second-best long jump at 19-2 3/4 (5.86m), and ran the second-fastest 800m time of 2 minutes, 22.87 seconds. Miller, ran the 60m hurdles in 8.82, cleared 5-4 1/4 (1.63m) in the high jump, threw the shot 31-8 3/4 (9.67m), long jumped 16-8 3/4 (5.10m), and ran the 800m in a time of 2:27.93.

'Julie had a very solid performance,' Cougar Head Coach Rick Sloan said. 'She's right at her lifetime best in most of the events. She wants to breakout. She's tired of being solid with her performances. She wants lifetime bests in all her events. In my experience, when people are very consistent with putting up marks week after week they are right on the verge of a big performance. We want to have her very well-rested and healthy when we go to the NCAA Championships.'

Diles, a senior All-American from Bellevue, Wash., finished second in the women's pole vault after clearing a season-best bar height of 13-feet, 9 inches (4.19m), just 1/4 inch below the NCAA Automatic Qualifying standard but an improved NCAA Provisional Qualifying mark for Diles. WSU freshman Tiffany Maskulinski finished tied for eighth with UCLA's Ingrid Kantola as both vaulted 12-7 1/4 (3.84m) with identical series missed vaults. UCLA's Chelsea Johnson won the women's pole vault with a 14-5 1/4 (4.40m) clearance.

'Tamara did a good job of working the competition,' Sloan said. 'This was her fourth best jump ever and her best jump since her freshman year. We tried to go up to a bigger pole on her final attempt at 14-1 but her step was off and she just wasn't ready to have that pole in her hands. She's another person who wants to make a quantum leap forward and we're looking for that big jump to come in the next couple weeks.'

WSU's Brandon Brownell, a junior from Olympia, Wash., is in sixth place after the first day of the men's heptathlon with 2,898 points. Brownell ran a PR time of 7.19 seconds in the 60m dash, long jumped 22-feet, 1 inch (6.73m), threw the shot put 42-4 1/4 (12.91m) and high jumped 6-0 3/4 (1.85m). Arizona State's Joshua Kinnaman leads wth heptathlon with 3,242 points. The final three events - the 60m hurdles, pole vault and 1,000m run, will be contested Saturday morning.

In other final events, WSU freshman Catie Schuetzle (Spokane, Wash.) finished eighth in the women's long jump with a leap of 18-10 (5.74m). In the women's 5000m race, both Collier Lawrence (17:30.11) and Kelly Ramirez (17:38.02) ran PRs but finished 11th and 12th, respectively. The WSU's women's distance medley relay team of Marisa Sandoval, Kameko Wilson, Karen DeMartini and Isley Gonzalez finished sixth with a time of 11:50.35, the fourth fastest time in school history.

The Cougar men's distance medley relay team of Clay Hemlock, Brian Woods, Matt Miller and Evan Blanshan ran a time of 9:58.94 for seventh place. In the men's 5000m final, all four Cougar men ran PR times but did not score team points. Mike Heidt (14:28.00 - 14th), Alex Grant (14:38.14 - 15th), Drew Polley (14:39.60 - 18th), and Andrew Jones (14:39.73 - 19th) all dropped their lifetime best times with Heidt, a senior, taking nearly one full minute off his previous best time.

WSU competitors redshirt freshman Phil MacArthur and freshman Chase Mancuso both reached PRs in the men's weight throw with throws of 55-1 1/2 (16.80m) for MacArthur (tied 9th) and 51-3 14 (15.60m) for Mancuso (14th).

In women's preliminary races, WSU sophomore La Shawnda Porter advanced to the 200m final with a prelim time of 24.84. Brandi Probasco-Canda ran the third-fastest 400m dash time, a PR of 55.38, to qualify for the final. In the same 400m prelims, Nicole McClendon, with a PR time of 57.52, and Lorraine King (57.98) did not advance.

Freshman Angelica Flynn's 60m hurdles time of 9.27 qualified her for the final as all seven competitors advanced. Fellow frosh Sara Trané was not as fortunate as she ran the ninth-fastest time in the 800m prelims of 2:10.49, breaking her own WSU freshman school record in the event, but only eight runners advanced to the final. Nicole Hatcher ran prelim times of 7.76 in the 60m dash and 25.40 in the 200m but did not advance either final.

In the men's preliminaries, James McSwain ran the top 60m dash time of 6.74 and will be joined in the finals by teammate Jaycee Robertson whose 6.83 time was fourth-fastest and a PR. McSwain, Robertson and freshman Justin Woods will all compete in the 200m dash final after McSwain ran a PR time of 21.36, Robertson a time of 21.70, and Woods a PR time of 21.79 in the prelims. Woods also ran a PR time of 6.91 in the 60m dash but did not qualify for the final.

'This was a very workman-like effort for James, both races,' Sloan said. 'It was a good, solid performance by him. Both races it looked like he was racing at about 90 percent effort and I know that he wasn't but he made it look easy. And Jaycee ran a good 60m but he had a little trouble in the turn so hopefully we'll get him outside and he'll be able to run a better 200m tomorrow. Justin Woods had a couple of PRs too.'

Freshman Robert Williams, coming off an injury, ran a 60m hurdles time of 8.31 which was ninth and not among the eight advanced to the final. Jimmy Schofield ran an 800m prelim time of 1:56.06 for 15th place.

In team scoring after the first day, the WSU women are in sixth place with 21.5 points as Arizona State leads with 54 points. On the men's side, the Cougars are ninth with two points as host Washington leads with 41 points.

The MPSF Indoor Track & Field Championships resume Saturday morning at 10 a.m. in Seattle.

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