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Track Athletes Ride SoCal Sun To Record Performances
Central Washington's Kodiak Landis became just the third athlete in GNAC history to surpass 7,000 points in the decathlon at the Bryan Clay Invitational. Photo by Chris Oertell.
Central Washington's Kodiak Landis became just the third athlete in GNAC history to surpass 7,000 points in the decathlon at the Bryan Clay Invitational. Photo by Chris Oertell.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

THIS WEEK'S GNAC ATHLETES OF THE WEEK
MEN’S TRACK
David Ribich, Western Oregon
Senior • Enterprise, Ore.

Ribich set the NCAA Division II record and the 14th fastest time in the world this year in the 1,500 meters at the Bryan Clay Invitational. He placed sixth with a time of 3:37.35, which eclipsed the previous Division II record of 3:38.91 set by Kip Cheruiyot of Mount St. Mary’s in 1987. Ribich is now automatically qualified for the NCAA Championships in both the 800 meters and 1,500 meters.

Also Nominated: Carlos Ortiz (Concordia), Jasper Heckman (Saint Martin’s), Kyler Sager (Western Washington).

MEN’S FIELD
Kodiak Landis, Central Washington
Senior • Snohomish, Wash.

Landis moved up to No. 3 in the nation this season and broke the CWU school record in the decathlon at the Bryan Clay Invitational. Landis placed second in group three of the competition with a score of 7,187 points, a total which ranks No. 3 on the GNAC All-Time List. In the process, Landis won both the 100 meters (10.74) and the 400 meters (47.87). His time in the 400 meters is No. 6 on the GNAC All-Time List while his mark of 23 feet, 11 inches, in the long jump is No. 10 on the GNAC All-Time List.

Also Nominated: Jakob Chamberlin (Concordia), Payton Lewis (Northwest Nazarene), Josh Schulz (Saint Martin’s), Tupre Wickliff (Western Washington).

WOMEN’S TRACK
Caroline Kurgat, Alaska Anchorage
Senior • Eldoret, Kenya

Kurgat set the GNAC record in the 5,000 meters and posted NCAA Championships in both the 5,000 meters and the 1,500 meters at the Bryan Clay Invitational. On Thursday, Kurgat placed second in the first section of the 5,000 with a time of 15:43.95, eclipsing the former GNAC record of 15:44.07 set by Jessica Pixler of Seattle Pacific in 2010. It is the best time in Division II this season. On Friday, Kurgat set the UAA record in the 1,500 meters as she ran 4:21.18, which is No. 4 on the GNAC All-Time List and No. 2 in Division II this season.

Also Nominated: Alexa Shindruk (Central Washington), Renick Meyer (Seattle Pacific), Olivia Woods (Western Oregon), Savannah Smith (Western Washington).

WOMEN’S FIELD
Christina MacDonald, Concordia
Senior • Myrtle Creek, Ore.

MacDonald broke the GNAC record in the women’s hammer and became the first woman in conference history to surpass 200 feet in the event at the Cougar Open. MacDonald won the event with a mark of 203 feet, 6 inches, which is No. 3 in Division II this season and is an NCAA Championships automatic qualifier. MacDonald also won the shot put with a season-best mark of 49 feet, 1.75 inches, which is No. 3 on the GNAC All-Time List.

Also Nominated: Erykah Weems (Central Washington), Scout Cai (Seattle Pacific), Maddie Taylor (Western Washington).

AROUND THE GNAC
ALASKA ANCHORAGE
• A pair of NCAA Championships automatic qualifiers and a GNAC record for Caroline Kurgat led Alaska Anchorage at the Mount SAC Relays, The Bryan Clay Invitational and the Beach Invitational.

• The senior was named the GNAC Women’s Track Athlete of the Week and the USTFCCCA Division II Women’s Athlete of the Week. She set the GNAC record in the 5,000 meters at the Bryan Clay Invitational. Her time of 15:43.95 is also the best in Division II this season. Kurgat also ran 4:21.18 in the 1,500 meters, No. 4 on the GNAC All-Time List and No. 2 in Division II this season. To date, Kurgat has automatically qualified for nationals in the 1,500, 5,000 and 10,000.

• Sophomore Vanessa Aniteye ran the women’s 400 meters at both the Bryan Clay and the Beach Invitational. She placed fifth in the race at the Beach Invite with a time of 55.24 that is a provisional qualifier for nationals and 10th in Division II this season.

• Seniors Tamara Perez and Danielle McCormick each improved their provisional qualifying times in the 1,500 meters at the Bryan Clay. Perez ran 4:26.64, ranking 10th in Division II, while McCormick ran 4:31.33.

• Sophomore Emmah Chelimo improved provisional qualifying time in the women’s 5,000 at the Bryan Clay. She was third in her heat with a time of 16:59.71, which is 20th in Division II. Sophomore Mariah Burroughs improved her provisional time in the women’s steeplechase at the Bryan Clay, running a time of 10:49.95 that is 20th in Division II.

• Sophomore Chris Brake led the UAA men as he placed 19th in the triple jump at the Bryan Clay with a mark of 46 feet, 11 inches. Freshman Felix Kemboi was 20th in the 1,500 meters at the Beach Invitational with a time of 3:54.27.

• The three California meets were the last for the Seawolves before the GNAC Combined Event Championships on Apr. 30 and May 1 and the GNAC Championships on May 11 and 12.

CENTRAL WASHINGTON
• Senior Kodiak Landis’ impressive performance in the decathlon led Central Washington’s efforts at the Mount SAC Relays, the Bryan Clay Invitational and the Beach Invitational.

• Landis was named the GNAC Men’s Field Athlete of the Week after he placed second in the second group of the decathlon at the Bryan Clay. His score of 7,187 points is No. 3 on the GNAC All-Time List. He is just the third athlete in conference history to surpass 7,000 points. Landis was a winner in both the 100 meters and 400 meters. His time of 47.87 seconds in the 400 is No. 6 on the GNAC All-Time List. In addition, his mark of 23 feet, 11 inches, is an NCAA Championships provisional qualifier.

• Senior Alexa Shindruk set the CWU school record in the 10,000 meters at the Mount SAC Relays. Her ninth-place time of 34:57.08 is No. 7 on the GNAC All-Time List and 10th in Division II this season.

• Senior Ali Anderson led Central Washington in the Bryan Clay heptathlon. She placed fifth in the competition’s first group with a score of 4,523 points, which ranks 28th in Division II this season. Anderson won the final event of the competition, the 800 meters, in 2:18.06.

• Sophomore Erykah Weems moved up to No. 5 on the GNAC All-Time List after she placed 11th in the 400-meter hurdles at the Beach Invitational. Her time of 1:00.77 is an NCAA Championships provisional qualifier and is 13th in Division II this season.

• Junior Mariyah Vongsaveng improved her provisional qualifying time in the 100-meter hurdles at the Bryan Clay, placing 18th with a time of 14.34 seconds. Sophomore Halle Irvine posted an improvement in her provisional qualifying mark in the pole vault at the Beach Invitational. Her mark of 12 feet, 3.5 inches ties her for 17th in Division II this season.

• Junior Corbin Carlton notched an NCAA Championships provisional qualifier in the men’s steeplechase at the Mount SAC Relays. His time of 9:09.17 third in the GNAC this season and 23rd in Division II.

• The Wildcats will participate in the Ralph Vernacchia Invitational in Bellingham, Wash., on Saturday, and will try to earn their first points of the championships at the GNAC Combined Event Championships on Monday and Tuesday in Nampa, Idaho.

CONCORDIA
• A big record for senior Christina MacDonald in the women’s hammer led Concordia’s performances at the Bryan Clay Invitational and at the Cougar Open in Canby, Ore.

• MacDonald was named the GNAC Women’s Field Athlete of the Week as she became the first women’s athlete to surpass 200 feet in the hammer at the Cougar Open. She won the event with a mark of 203 feet, 6 inches, which smashed the previous record mark of 194 feet, which she set last week. She is now an NCAA Championships automatic qualifier in the event. MacDonald also won the shot put with a mark of 49 feet, 1.75 inches, which ranks No. 3 on the GNAC All-Time List.

• Three other Concordia throwers improved GNAC All-Time List marks at the Cougar Open. Sophomore Tasha Willing moved into third on the hammer list with her mark of 191 feet. Freshman Rachel Bring moved to  No. 7 on the list and provisionally qualified for nationals with a mark of 148 feet, 10 inches, in the discus. Junior Katrina Linenko moved into No. 10 on the discus list with her mark of 145 feet, 9 inches.

• Concordia had both winners in the javelin at the Cougar Open. Freshman Elizabeth Stottlemyre won the women’s competition with a mark of 140 feet, 7 inches, while sophomore Easton Christensen won the men’s event with a mark of 206 feet, 1 inch.

• Concordia swept top honors in the four men’s throwing events at the Cougar Open. Junior Josh Koch won the shot put with a mark of 57 feet, 9 inches. Sophomore Jakob Chamberlin won the discus with a mark of 168 feet, 6 inches, while freshman Jacob Slate won the hammer with a mark of 198 feet, 6 inches.

• Senior Carlos Ortiz led a select group of Concordia athletes that traveled to the Bryan Clay Invitational. Ortiz placed fifth in the men’s 100 meters with a time of 10.72 seconds. He then placed 15th in the 200 meters with a time of 21.45 seconds that ranks No. 10 on the GNAC All-Time List.

• Concordia will run split squad this weekend, traveling to both the Pacific Twilight on Friday and the Oregon State High Performance Meet on Friday and Saturday.

MONTANA STATE BILLINGS
• Eight event victories, along with a pair of NCAA Championships provisional qualifiers for Sam Zook, led Montana State Billings’ performances at the Blue Hawk Games.

• The senior men’s sprinter won the 100 meters in a time of 10.41 seconds, which moves him to No. 3 on the GNAC All-Time List and ties him for 10th in Division II this season. Zook also took the win in the 200 meters with a time of 21.08 seconds that ties him for 11th in Division II.

• Senior Nels Flanagan won a pair of throwing events, capturing the men’s discus with a mark of 153 feet, 11 inches, and the hammer with a mark of 171 feet, 4 inches. Flanagan enters the week ranked seventh in the GNAC in the hammer.

• Junior Brady Ostermiller added a win in the men’s shot put. His mark of 50 feet, 5.5 inches, is seventh in the GNAC this season. Junior Tyus Mendoza also collected a victory in the men’s steeplechase with a time of 9:55.70.

• Sophomore Michaela Johnson was the women’s 100-meter hurdles in a time of 14.71 seconds and also placed third in the 100 meters with a time of 12.39 seconds. Freshman Hannah Nessan was the lone women’s event winner as she won the discus with a throw of 140 feet, 1 inch.

• Montana State Billings added two meets to the schedule this weekend. A group of six athletes will compete at the prestigious Drake Relays in Des Moines, Iowa, while the rest of the squad will compete at the Carroll College Open in Helena, Mont.

NORTHWEST NAZARENE
• A handful of Northwest Nazarene’s top athletes traveled to Southern California to take part in the Mount SAC Relays.

• Senior Payton Lewis improved his NCAA Championships provisional qualifying mark in the men’s pole vault as he took third in the first flight of the event with a mark of 16 feet, 6.75 inches. The mark ties him for 13th in Division II this season.

• Senior John Van Beuren improved both NCAA Championships provisional qualifying marks in the men’s hammer and the discus. He placed fifth in the second section of the invitational hammer with a throw of 186 feet, 3 inches. That is second in the GNAC and 26th in Division II this season. Van Beuren then placed fourth in the first flight of the discus with a mark of 163 feet, ranking him 39th in Division II.

• Senior Ebu Camara performed well in his two sprint races. He placed second in the fourth section of the men’s 400 meters with a time of 48.36 seconds and took seventh in the seventh section of the 200 meters in 22.26 seconds. Sophomore Logan Blake placed sixth in the first section of the 400 with a time of 49.16 seconds. Camara is now fourth in the GNAC in the 400 this season.

• Sophomore Godfrey Kemboi posted a season-best in the men’s 5,000 meters, placing 27th in race’s first section with a time of 14:50.86. The performance is sixth-best in the GNAC this season.

• Northwest Nazarene’s final tune-up prior to the GNAC Championships will be close to home with the Nighthawks competing at the Idaho/Utah Border Clash on Friday and Saturday in Boise, Idaho.

SAINT MARTIN’S
• A handful of Saint Martin’s athletes headed to Southern California to compete at the three big SoCal meets.

• Senior Jasper Heckman had the highest individual finish for the Saints as he placed fifth in the men’s steeplechase at the Beach Invitational with a time of 9:29.30. The time ranks Heckman ninth in the GNAC this season.

• Sophomore Josh Schulz improved his season-best in the men’s long jump at the Bryan Clay Invitational. Schulz placed 19th with a mark of 22 feet, 10.5 inches, which ranks fifth in the GNAC this season.

• Senior Deanna Avalos competed in the women’s javelin at the Beach Invitational, placing 21st with a best of 141 feet, 8 inches.

• Senior Ashleigh Fraser placed 25th in the women’s long jump at the Bryan Clay Invitational as she turned in a leap of 17 feet, 8 inches.

• The Saints will go split squad this weekend, sending athletes to both the Ralph Vernacchia Invitational in Bellingham, Wash., and the OSU High Performance Meet in Corvallis, Ore.

SEATTLE PACIFIC
• A trio of solid performances in the heptathlon led Seattle Pacific’s performances at the Bryan Clay Invitational and the Beach Invitational.

• Sophomore Scout Cai led the way as she placed fifth in group two at the Bryan Clay. Her score of 4,921 points is No. 8 in Division II this season. She won the final event, the 800 meters, with a time of 2:17.70.

• Freshman Renick Meyer won group one of the heptathlon with a score of 4,852 points that is a provisional qualifier for the NCAA Championships and ranks her No. 12 in Division II this season. Meyer won the 100-meter hurdles in a time of 14.83 seconds.

• Freshman Kellie May also earned an NCAA provisional qualifying mark in the heptathlon as she placed seventh in group one with a score of 4,523 points. She enters the week ranked 31st in Division II.

• Senior Chynna Phan earned a provisional mark in the women’s 800 meters at the Bryan Clay, running 2:11.99 to rank 26th in Division II. Sophomore Lani Taylor also scored a provisional qualifier, running 55.93 seconds in the 400 meters at the Beach Invitational to rank 24th in Division II.

• In the distance events, senior Mary Charleson improved provisional marks in the 1,500 and 5,000 meters at the Bryan Clay. Charleson ran 17:13.91 in the 5,000 to rank 36th in Division II while her time of 4:32.51 in the 1,500 ranks 40th. Sophomore Kate Lilly also hit a provisional qualifier in the 1,500 meters with a time of 4:30.30 that ranks 23rd in Division II.

• Junior Geneva Lehnert improved her provisional qualifying mark in the women’s high jump, placing 10th at the Bryan Clay with a mark of 5 feet, 5.75 inches. She is now tied for 28th in Division II this season.

• Senior Peyton Harris led the SPU men as he placed 30th in the 110-meter hurdles with a season-best of 15.16 seconds that ranks third in the GNAC. Freshman Elius Graff was 29th in his section of the 5,000 in a time of 15:44.82.

• Seattle Pacific will compete at both at the OSU High Performance Meet in Corvallis, Ore., on Friday and Saturday and at the Ralph Vernacchia Invitational in Bellingham, Wash., on Saturday.

SIMON FRASER
• Upward movements for Vladislav Tsygankov and Addy Townsend on the Division II best lists led Simon Fraser’s performances at the big three SoCal meets.

• At the Bryan Clay Invitational, Tsygankov posted a season-best as he placed fifth in 400-meter hurdles with a time of 52.06 seconds. That time is seventh in Division II this season. Tsygankov also ran the 400 meters at the Beach Invitational with his time of 47.91 moving him to No. 8 on the GNAC All-Time List.

• Townsend, meanwhile, improved to No. 5 on the GNAC All-Time List and third in Division II this season in the women’s 1,500 meters at the Bryan Clay with a time of 4:22.26.

• Senior Sophie Dodd notched an NCAA Championships provisional qualifying mark in the women’s 400-meter hurdles at the Beach Invitational. Her time of 1:01.67 is 24th in Division II and No. 8 on the GNAC All-Time List.

• Senior Reta Dobie ran the 10th fastest time in Division II this season in the women’s steeplechase at the Bryan Clay, clocking a time of 10:33.81, while sophomore Chelsea Ribeiro ran 10:58.72 to rank 28th in Division II. Freshman Ally Ginther ran the conference’s fastest time and the ninth fastest time in Division II this season in the women’s 5,000 meters with a time of 16:43.39.

• Senior Braeden Charlton provisionally qualified for nationals in the men’s steeplechase at the Bryan Clay. His time of 9:09.31 is 24th in Division II this season.

• Senior Joel Webster placed 15th in the men’s 400 meters at the Bryan Clay with a time of 48.42 seconds. He then placed 35th in the same event at the Beach Invitational, clocking 49.28 seconds.

• Simon Fraser will compete this weekend at both the OSU High Performance Meet in Corvallis, Ore., and the Ralph Vernacchia Invitational in Bellingham.

WESTERN OREGON
• A Division II national record for senior David Ribich led performances for Western Oregon as they split between the big three SoCal meets and the Cougar Open.

• Ribich was named both the GNAC Men’s Track Athlete of the Week and the USTFCCCA Division II Men’s Athlete of the Week after he ran a Division II-record time of 3:37.35 at the Bryan Clay Invitational. That eclipsed the previous Division II record of 3:38.91 set by Kip Cheruiyot of Mount St. Mary’s in 1987. The time is also the 14th fastest in the world this season. Ribich was sixth in the race’s fastest heat with the winner, Josh Kerr of New Mexico, setting a Division I record in 3:35.01. Ribich is now automatically qualified for the NCAA Championships in both the 800 meters and 1,500 meters.

• Senior AJ Holmberg, meanwhile, notched an NCAA provisional mark in the men’s 800 meters at the Bryan Clay. His time of 1:51.39 is 28th fastest in Division II this season.

• Junior Olivia Woods placed 17th in the women’s 800 meters at the Bryan Clay with a season-best of 2:07.76, which ranks eighth in Division II. Senior Megan Rose, meanwhile, improved to No. 11 in Division II this season in the women’s 800 meters with a time of 2:09.05.

• At the Mount SAC Relays, senior Kennedy Rufener improved her NCAA Championships provisional qualifying time in the women’s 10,000 meters. Her time of 35:10.65 is 12th in Division II this season.

• Junior Tyler Jones ran the second-fastest time in the GNAC this season in the men’s 5,000 meters at the Bryan Clay. Jones placed 11th in the fourth section of the race with a time of 14:40.20.

• At the Cougar Invitational, freshman Jacob Collins led the Wolves with a third-place finish in the men’s pole vault, clearing 13 feet, 7.25 inches. Freshman Shayla Solomon was third in the 800 meters in 2:18.62 and sophomore Nicole Niskanen was third in the 400-meter hurdles in a time of 1:06.83

• Western Oregon returns to competition at the OSU High Performance Meet in Corvallis, Ore., on Friday and Saturday.

WESTERN WASHINGTON
• Junior Maddie Taylor’s NCAA Championships provisional qualifying mark in the women’s high jump led Western Washington’s performances at the Bryan Clay Invitational and the Beach Invitational.

• Taylor placed ninth in the event at the Beach Invitational. Her mark of 5 feet, 7 inches, ties her for No. 10 on the GNAC All-Time List and is tied for the 11th-best mark in Division II this season.

• Junior Tupre Wickliff also earned a provisional qualifying mark in the men’s high jump at the Bryan Clay. His mark of 6 feet, 9 inches, placed fifth and ranks him in a tie for 24th in Division II this season.

• Junior Kyler Sager earned an NCAA Championships provisional mark in the men’s 800 meters at the Bryan Clay. His time of 1:51.94 ranks 36th in Division II this season.

• The Vikings took the top-two spots at the Bryan Clay in the women’s javelin. Sophomore Raquel Pellecer won with a mark of 153 feet, 11 inches, while freshman Natalie Vetto was second with a season-best mark of 147 feet, 5 inches, that improves her to No. 11 in Division II this season.

• In the men’s javelin at the Bryan Clay, junior Alex Barry surpassed 200 feet once again as he placed second with a mark of 209 feet, 4 inches.

• Freshman Seren Dances represented the Vikings in the Bryan Clay Invitational decathlon. He placed sixth in group one of the event with a score of 6,151 points, which ranks him fifth in the GNAC this season.

• Sophomore Cordell Cummings notched season-bests in both the men’s 110-meter hurdles and the 400-meter hurdles at the Beach Invitational. His time of 15.01 seconds in the 110-meter hurdles leads the GNAC while his 54.28 seconds in the 400-meter hurdles is second.

• Western Washington is home this weekend, hosting the annual Ralph Vernacchia Invitational at Bellingham’s Civic Stadium.

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