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Distance Medley Relays Thrill With Top Times

Feb 18, 2022

SEATTLE – At two different sites, Washington's men's and women's distance medley relays ran to the top of the NCAA rankings today, with the men's squad shattering the school record and going to No. 3 in NCAA history. Both DMRs should be in prime qualifying position now for the NCAA Indoor Championships.
 
At the Arkansas Qualifier at the Randal Tyson Track Center, the Husky men's squad took down a loaded field with one of the fastest DMRs ever run. Luke Houser, Anthony Smith, Cass Elliott, and Brian Fay blistered the track in a time of 9:21.10. That's the fourth-fastest time in NCAA history, putting UW as the No. 3 all-time performers, behind Oregon and Ole Miss.
 
Washington's time is also fifth-fastest in world history for the event, which is primarily but not exclusively run in college, as a U.S. National Team owns one of the only four faster marks.
 
The time shattered Washington's previous record of 9:27.19, which was set by a 2016 squad that took second at the NCAA Indoor meet.
 
Houser led off and split 2:52.90 for the opening 1,200-meters. Smith then posted a 46.72 time for 400-meters, handing off to Elliott who carried the stick for 800-meters in a split of 1:48.68. Fay anchored, one week after breaking the school record in the 5,000-meters. He took UW from fifth-place to first, pulling away to win, and his final 1,600-meter split was a stunning 3:52.81.

 
"It was an unbelievable performance from every leg," said Head Coach Andy Powell. "That would have been a collegiate record a year ago. A lot of credit to (Assistant Coach) Jeshua (Anderson) who did a great job getting his guys ready to go. Making one of our short sprinters, Anthony Smith, into a long sprinter, and getting a long sprinter in Cass Elliott into an 800 meter runner. Then Brian's close was really special to watch."
 
The women's DMR already was among the NCAA leaders but improved its standing with another stellar run at the JDL DMR Invitational in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Madison Heisterman gave the Huskies the early lead after her 1,200-meter leg. She passed to Carley Thomas for the 400-meters who kept UW near the front, as did Anna Gibson over 800-meters. Allie Schadler anchored and brought the Huskies back into the lead and she held it for the win in a time of 11:04.73.
 
But that time comes with a conversion, given that the JDL track is a flat 200-meter track. When the conversion is put in place, Washington's time should drop down to 10:57.69, unofficially. That will put the Huskies third in the NCAA this season, and it is also the third-fastest time in UW history.
 
"The goal for the women was to break that 11-minute mark and they got the job done with the track conversion," said Director of Track & Field Maurica Powell. "Most importantly it was just a good opportunity to battle and race a good field on a tight track."

 
Back at Arkansas there were two more outstanding individual efforts from Joe Waskom and Isaac Green.
 
Just last week at the Husky Classic, Waskom had a long-awaited career milestone, as he cracked the four-minute mile barrier for the first time, running 3:59.65. Only six days later, Waskom obliterated that PR, all the way down to 3:56.43, the new No. 5 time in school history. He is also now the fourth Husky this year to run better than 3:57, following Brian Fay (3:55.14), Kieran Lumb (3:55.53) and Luke Houser (3:56.57).
 
Green dropped eight seconds off his career-best in the 3,000-meters with the second-fastest time in school history. He powered to a time of 7:49.74 today, joining record-holder Colby Gilbert as the only two Dawgs to break 7:50.
 
Members of the women's DMR are entered in individual events on Saturday as the JDL DMR Invite wraps up.