Trio of Vikings Earn GNAC Athlete of the Week Honors

March 12, 2018

BELLINGHAM, Wash. – Western Washington University track & field sophomore Raquel Pellecer, junior Alex Barry and freshman Bryant Welch have been named Great Northwest Athletic Conference Track & Field Athletes of the Week, announced Monday by the conference office in Portland, Ore.

Pellecer (Sandy, OR/Portland State) was recognized as the GNAC Women’s Field Athlete of the Week for the second consecutive week, placing 1st of 19 in the javelin at the Pacific Lutheran University Open with a mark of 45.00m (147-8). The effort was an NCAA Division II provisional-qualifying and GNAC-qualifying mark. The throw improved upon her provisional-qualifying and GNAC-qualifying mark of 43.42m (142-5) at the season-opening University of Puget Sound Ed Boitano Invitational last weekend.

Barry (Sequim, WA) earned the GNAC Men’s Field Athlete of the Week honor. He won the javelin at the PLU Open, placing 1st of 13 with an NCAA Division II provisional-qualifying and GNAC-qualifying mark of 60.05m (197-0). The throw ranks 5th nationally and 3rd in the GNAC this season behind Brian Chalkley of Saint Martin’s with a mark of 65.20m (213-11) and teammate Spencer Claeys (Jr., Silverdale, WA/Central Kitsap/Olympic College) with a throw of 63.05m (206-10).

Welch (Burien, WA/Mount Rainier) was named the GNAC Men’s Track Athlete of the Week after competing in the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay for the Vikings in his outdoor season debut for WWU. He placed 3rd of 24 in the 100m with a time of 11.28, 2nd of 28 in the 200m with a time of 22.12 and helped the WWU 4x100m “A” relay team to a 1st-place finish in a time of 42.97. The 200m time was a GNAC-qualifying performance and the top time in the conference this season.

The WWU men and women each claimed team wins at the PLU Open as the men totaled 222.5 points ahead of 2nd-place Central Washington (194 points) among a field of 15 teams. The WWU women won with 206.5 points ahead of 2nd-place Central Washington (185.5 points) among a field of 12 teams.

The trio of conference honors announced Monday follow Pellecer’s weekly award last week and a weekly honor for junior pole vaulter J.T. Konrad (Mead, WA/Mount Spokane) during the indoor season (Feb. 19-25) as GNAC Athlete of the Week honors for the WWU track & field program during 2018. Barry and Welch each earned GNAC Athlete of the Week honors for the first time in their respective careers while Pellecer’s honor is the second of her career.

WWU will continue the outdoor season schedule with the Seattle Pacific University Doris Heritage Distance Festival on Saturday, March 24. The following weekend, WWU will be in four locations over a two-day span with the San Francisco State Distance Carnival (March 30-31, Hayward, CA), Stanford Invitational (March 30-31, Stanford, CA) UBC Open (March 30-31, Vancouver, BC) and UPS Shotwell Invitational (March 31, Tacoma, WA).

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