Cougars Travel to Provo for NCAA West Region Championships

May 23, 2006

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NCAA WEST REGION CHAMPIONSHIPS NEXT FOR COUGS: Washington State University will send 11 men and nine women* to the NCAA West Region Track & Field Meet this weekend at the Clarence F. Robison Track and Field Complex on the Brigham Young University campus...Cougars will compete in the May 26-27 meet against student-athletes representing 40 men's and 42 women's teams...the top-five individual finishers from each regional event automatically advance to the NCAA Championships, June 7-10, at three finishers in each event in each region will be placed in a descending order list using season-best marks and will be selected for participation in the national meet until all spots are filled...Friday's West Region action starts at 11 a.m. MT and concludes 7 p.m. MT...Saturday's events being at 10 a.m. MT and wrap up at 5:25 p.m....there is team scoring using the format 10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1 for eight places in each of the 19 men's and 19 women's events (no multi-events and no 10,000m races at Regionals)...*although qualified for West Region Meet, WSU heptathletes Diana Pickler (100m hurdles, high jump) and Julie Pickler (100m hurdles, high jump) will not compete at Provo but will continue training for NCAA Championship heptathlon...Tiffany Maskulinski (pole vault) and Meghan Leonard (steeplechase) are either ill or injured and not able to compete at the West Region Meet....NCAA West Region meet schedule and results can be located at , click on the logo for the NCAA West Region Championships in lower left corner.

FUTURE LOOKS BRIGHT: Of the 11 Cougar men competing at the NCAA West Region, three are freshmen, one is a redshirt-freshman, but only two are seniors - Martin Boston and James McSwain...of the nine WSU women competing, three are seniors - Jenna Dean, Tamara Diles and Katie Miller.

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 with 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...Farwell, Macdonald, Richardson, McGee and Thornton all competed for WSU.

ARTHUR ASHE JR SPORTS SCHOLARS: Three members of the WSU women's track and field team were named to the 2006 Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholars teams which are featured in the April 6 issue of Diverse: Issues in Higher Education magazine...honors go to student-athletes who exemplify the standards set by the former tennis great and criteria includes intercollegiate sport competition, maintaining a 3.2 or higher cumulative grade point average, and active in campus/community events...WSU had 10 student-athletes honored...track and field team members included Nicole McClendon and Kelly Ramirez to the third team, and Tamara Diles to the fourth team.

PAC-10 CHAMPIONSHIPS HIGHLIGHTS: Several Cougars scored and others reached personal-best marks at Eugene in spite of several team members battling a stomach virus...WSU scorers included John Cassleman 2nd 400m hurdles, Tamara Diles 2nd pole vault, Julie Pickler 2nd heptathlon, Matt Lamb 3rd discus, Sara Trané 4th 400m hurdles, Jon Jeffreys 5th javelin, Diana Pickler 5th 100m hurdles, McKenzie Garberg 5th discus, women's 4x100m relay 5th (Nicole Hatcher, La Shawnda Porter, Diana Pickler, Catie Schuetzle), McKinnon Hanson 6th high jump, men's 4x100m relay 6th (Eric Nygard, Brian Woods, Justin Woods, Jaycee Robertson), Martin Boston 7th triple jump, Phil MacArthur 7th hammer, Kyle Eaton 7th high jump, women's 4x400m relay 7th (Nicole McClendon, Brandi Probasco-Canda, La Shawnda Porter, Lorraine King), Katie Miller 8th heptathlon, Collier Lawrence 8th steeplechase, Ryan Thomas 8th high jump, men's 4x400m relay 8th (Brian Woods, John Cassleman, Josh Leyk and Eric Nygard)...WSU women's team finished 8th (40 points) and the men were ninth (37 points).

NATIONAL POLLS: The May 17 Trackwire Top 25 Team rankings find neither the WSU women's or men's team ranked...teams holding top rankings this week are Texas women and Florida State men...USC (3rd) is the top Pac-10 women's team ranked as are Arizona's men (6th)...Trackwire 25 projects a hypothetical score for the NCAA meet, factoring in injury reports and other variables supported by information gathered from coaches and NCAA-qualifying competitions across the country...this projection is generated by scoring the Dandy Dozen, a power ranking of the top 12 athletes and relay squads in each NCAA event...three Cougs are included in Trackwire Online's Dandy Dozen lists, a power ranking of the top 12 athletes and relay squads in each NCAA event...WSU women ranked include Julie Pickler, 4th in the heptathlon, and Tamara Diles, 6th in the pole vault...John Cassleman is ranked 5th in the men's 400m hurdles...neither WSU team is ranked in the May 16 U.S. Track & Field/Cross Country Coaches Assoc. Top 20.

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