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Decker's Performances Leads Falcons To Team Of The Week
Jalen Tims and Lynelle Decker helped lead the Seattle Pacific 4x400 relay team to a third place finish at the NCAA Div. II Indoor Track and Field Championships. Photo by Loren Orr.
Jalen Tims and Lynelle Decker helped lead the Seattle Pacific 4x400 relay team to a third place finish at the NCAA Div. II Indoor Track and Field Championships. Photo by Loren Orr.

Monday, March 14, 2016

PORTLAND, Ore. – Led by outstanding performances in the 800 meters, 4x400 meter relay and the distance medley relay, the Seattle Pacific women’s track and field team took 11th place overall at the NCAA Division II Indoor Track and Field Championships in Pittsburg, Kan., earning them the GNAC’s Red Lion Team of the Week award.

“We had some hope that we could maybe get in the top-15 or top-20 if we had a good day,” said assistant coach Chris Reed. “I don’t think we talked about getting 11th too much.”

Senior Lynelle Decker put together her best performances of her career, earning three All-American selections over the weekend.  Along with Jahzelle Ambus, Chynna Phan and Anna Patti, Decker received her first All-American award of the weekend on Friday after a fifth place finish in the women’s distance medley relay.

On Saturday, Decker sprinted to a second place finish in the 800 meters in a time of 2:07.52, shattering her personal best by almost two seconds and besting the previous program record of 2:07.57. Decker entered the final lap in fifth place, but came from behind on the home stretch to grab second place, the top finish of her career at the national level.

“Coming out of the prelims, I was more relieved than anything to make it to finals,” said Decker. “ My coaches told me that I had a chance to be a champion, so I went for it.”

Decker helped the 4x400 relay team also grab All-American status with a third place finish in a time of 3:42.44. She was joined by Ambus, Jalen Tims and Cheryl Hong.

Seattle Pacific sent eight women’s track and field athletes to nationals last weekend, the largest number in program history. Ambus and Tims both competed in the 400 meter dash, Phan ran in the 800 meters with Decker, freshman Geneva Lehnert competed in the high jump and senior Maliea Luquin placed 10th in the 60 meter hurdles.

"This group is going to be great in outdoors because of their performance at indoor nationals,” said Reed. “It is not just the eight people at nationals, it is the people back home who get to train with these ladies every day.”

The Falcons scored 18 points to tie for 11th place overall, just 2.5 points behind ninth place Alaska Anchorage. Lincoln (Mo.) took home the national title with 60 points.

Seattle Pacific's outdoor season begins for some and continues for others on Mar. 19 at the Lewis and Clark Spring Break Open in Portland, Ore.

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