March 29, 2014

Four More Eagles Qualify at Al Manuel Invitational

Arrigoni and Midles’ No. 2 all-time performances, Arakawa’s personal best highlight Eastern’s showing in Montana

Competing in the second outdoor meet of the season, the Eastern Washington University track and field teams grabbed four more Big Sky qualifiers and also put together a few historic performances at the Al Manuel Invitational Friday and Saturday (March 28-29) in Missoula, Mont. 

“We didn’t do as well as I had hoped as a team, but some of our individual performances made up for it,” said head women’s coach Marcia Mecklenburg. 

Catie Arrigoni ran a time of 11:01.92 in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, placing third and hitting a conference standard. That time also moves Arrigoni to second in school history, ranking only behind her teammate Katie Mahoney, who set a school record of 10:21.53 last season.

“I continue to be excited about the depth we have in the distances,” said Mecklenburg. “Catie had one of Eastern’s top steeple performances of all-time. Her and Katie will be a great duo in that event for us this season.”

Jordan Arakawa launched a personal best of 219-3 in the hammer throw, winning the competition by over 30 feet. Arakawa’s mark continues to rank second all-time at Eastern behind school-record holder David Paul (226-2, 2007).

“Jordan’s outstanding series of hammer throws reflected his hard work and discipline,” said head men’s coach Stan Kerr, “The whole team watches, enjoyed and appreciated one of the top hammer throwers in the country.”

Olivia Midles also moved into the No. 2 spot all-time in the hammer, reaching a personal best of 188-10 to place first. She now only sits behind Nicole Luckenbach, who broke the school record with a toss of 199-8 in 2010. 

“Olivia had the meet of her career today with her personal best and the win,” said Mecklenburg. “She has been working hard in the weight room and in the ring and it is paying off for her.” 

Morgan Romey won the shot put with a toss of 45-0 ¼, booking her ticket to the Big Sky Championships.

Kelsie Forcier, who qualified in the hammer at the last meet for Eastern, hit her second Big Sky mark of the season with a throw of 145-0 in the discus. 

In the women’s pole vault, Courtney Bray won the event with an outdoor personal best of 12-3 ½, moving her up to sixth all-time at Eastern. Anandae Clark cleared a Big Sky qualifying height of 11-9 ¾ to complete a one, two sweep for the Eagles.

“We had individual improvements in many of the event areas,” said Mecklenburg. “Morgan and Courtney’s wins were both also highlights of the meet.”

Zack Nielsen won the discus with a seasonal-best throw of 163-1 and he added a second-place finish in the hammer throw (189-1), also a seasonal best.

Jon Buchanan placed second in the shot put, getting off a seasonal-best toss of 54-4 ¾.

Kramer Green ran a time of 55.01 in the 400 hurdles, but finished just a millisecond off the Big Sky standard of 55.00.

Mahoney placed second in both the 800 (2:16.71) and 1,500 (4:38.77), and inched closer to the conference standards in those events (2:14, 4:34).

The Eagles will split up for their next competition, as the potential regional qualifiers will head to Palo Alto, Calif., for the Stanford Invitational on Apr. 4-5. The remainder of the team will head back to Montana for the Montana State Open in Bozeman, Mont., on the fifth.

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