WWU Readies for GNAC Championships

May 10, 2017

BELLINGHAM, Wash. - The Western Washington University track & field program is set to compete at the GNAC Outdoor Championships on Friday and Saturday, hosted by Western Oregon University at McArthur Stadium.

The two-day meet begins with field events starting at 2 pm on Friday while track events start at 2:45 pm. Action resumes on Saturday with field events beginning at 10 am and track events beginning at 12 pm. Live results will be provided and the GNAC will use Facebook Live to stream select events along with student-athlete interviews.

The Vikings have more defending event champions than any other school at the GNAC Outdoor Championships. The WWU men placed 2nd while the WWU women finished 4th at the GNAC Outdoor Championships in 2016.

WWU most recently had competitors in action at the Ken Shannon Invitational and Oregon Twilight Meet last week. Junior Anna Paradee (Tacoma, WA/Decatur) broke her own GNAC and school pole vault records with a second consecutive record-setting performance, posting an NCAA Division II automatic-qualifying height of 4.01m/13-1.75 last Saturday at the Ken Shannon Invitational. On Friday, senior Gordie Kordas (Blaine, WA) recorded an NCAA Division II provisional-qualifying pole vault height of 4.80m/15-9 at the Oregon Twilight Meet with an outdoor personal-best effort ranking in a tie for 6th in WWU top 10 history.

Men's Preview:

The WWU men placed 2nd at the GNAC Outdoor Championships last season with 128 points to finish behind Alaska Anchorage (163.5). The men won four consecutive team titles from 2012 through 2015 and have won six GNAC titles overall.

Senior Mark Seely (Spokane, WA/Central Valley) is the defending GNAC outdoor triple jump champion while sophomore Alex Barry (Sequim, WA) enters the meet with a GNAC-leading and NCAA Division II provisional-qualifying javelin mark of 62.30m/204-5.

Senior Cody McCranie (Auburn, WA) has the 3rd-best time (3:53.17) in the 1,500m during the season to lead three Vikings among the top 8 while freshman Cordell Cummings (Arlington, WA) has the 3rd-best 400m hurdles time at 55.41.

Senior Andrew Wise (Denver, CO/East) ranks 4th among top season times in the 3,000m steeplechase with a NCAA Division II provisional-qualifying time of 9:16.39 and sophomore Dylan Hayes (Seattle, WA/Garfield) is 6th (9:20.67). Sophomore Peter Butler (Port Angeles, WA) owns the 4th-best 10,000m time (31:53.72) while junior Isaac Derline (Kent, WA/Kentridge) and Wise are 5th (14:48.86) and 6th (14:51.33), respectively, in the 5,000m during the season.

Kordas ranks 3rd in the pole vault (4.80m/15-9) to lead three Vikings among the top 5. Senior Kevin Yates (Snohomish, WA) ranks 4th in the long jump 7.11m/23-4 while Seely is 4th in the triple jump (14.18m/46-6.25) and followed by junior Somit Chhim (Kelso, WA) at a distance of (13.87m/45-6.25) with the 5th-best mark.  

Junior Brandon Pless (Sedro-Woolley, WA) owns the 2nd-best GNAC shot put mark during the season at (16.15m/53-0 - NCAA II provisional-qualifying mark) while ranking 4th in the hammer (54.98m/180-4 - NCAA II provisional-qualifying mark) and discus (49.23m/161-6).

As a whole, the Viking men have 26 marks ranking among the top 8 on respective event lists for the 2017 GNAC outdoor season.

Women's Preview:

The WWU women finished 4th at the GNAC Outdoor Championships in 2016 with 101 points, ranking behind Seattle Pacific (148.5), Central Washington (143.5) and Alaska Anchorage (119).

The Vikings return defending champions in Paradee (pole vault), senior Jasmine McMullin (triple jump) and senior Megan Mortensen (discus). Paradee claimed the GNAC pole vault title during the 2017 indoor season after winning the outdoor title in 2016 while McMullin (Sequim, WA) is a two-time GNAC indoor triple jump champion in addition to claiming the outdoor title last season. Mortensen (Tacoma, WA/Franklin Pierce) is the two-time defending GNAC discus champion.

Senior Bethany Drake (Sandy, OR) enters the meet with a GNAC-leading and NCAA Division II automatic-qualifying javelin mark of 50.72m/166-5. McMullin leads the conference with a triple jump mark of 12.27m/40-3.25 (NCAA II provisional-qualifying mark) and ranks 3rd in the long jump as well (5.70m/18-8.5).

Senior Brittany Grant (Port Townsend, WA) has posted a GNAC-leading 3,000m steeplechase time (10:32.60 - NCAA II provisional-qualifying time) and ranks 5th in the 1,500m (4:30.15 - NCAA II provisional-qualifying time) as well as 7th in the 5,000m (17:25.89).

In addition to the GNAC-leading pole vault mark by Paradee, freshman Jewels Oliquiano (Kaneohe, HI/Castle) is tied for the 4th-best height (3.56m/11-8) during the season and is followed by sophomore Rachael Roberts (Woodinville, WA/Bellevue College) with the 6th-best height (3.50m/11-5.75).

Senior Lillianna Stelling (Langley, WA/South Whidbey) is 4th in the 5,000m (17:21.89) while freshman Sophia Galvez (Los Alamos, NM) is 4th in the 10,0000m (38:27.78) and junior Alexandra Laiblin (Oak Harbor, WA) is 5th with a time of 38:31.51.

Mortensen ranks 3rd with a discus throw of 43.77m/143-7 while senior Miranda Osadchey (DuPont, WA/Steilacoom) ranks tied for 5th in the high jump (1.65m/5-5).

Overall, the Viking women have 17 marks ranking among the top 8 on respective event lists for the 2017 GNAC outdoor season.

On May 1-2, junior Kaylie Greninger (Sammamish, WA/Skyline) recorded a personal-best and NCAA Division II provisional-qualifying score of 4,570 points to place 4th at the GNAC Combined Events Championships, hosted at Brian and Nichole Bohner Track on the campus of Northwest Nazarene University. The lone WWU competitor at the GNAC Combined Events Championships, she scored 5 points to count toward the overall WWU team score at the GNAC Outdoor Championships. Greninger's performance over the two days included personal-best efforts in the javelin (37.35m/122-6.75) to win the event and also the 800m (2:21.76).

2017 GNAC Track & Field Championships
May 12-13, 2017
Monmouth, Ore. // McArthur Field (host: Western Oregon University)
#GNACTF // @GNACSports // @WWUTFXC

In the most recent U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) West Region poll, the WWU men are ranked No. 12 and the WWU women are ranked No. 13. The women rank 30th nationally and the men rank 121st. Click here to view national and regional polls.

The Vikings have been honored with nine GNAC weekly awards during the outdoor season and were also named the GNAC/Red Lion Team of the Week on March 21. Last week, Paradee was named the Women's Field Co-Athlete of the Week, earning a GNAC weekly honor for the second consecutive week.

  • GNAC Women's Field Athlete of the Week (March 6): Megan Mortensen (Sr., Throws, Tacoma, WA/Franklin Pierce)
  • GNAC Men's Track Athlete of the Week (March 6): Peter Butler (So. Distance, Port Angeles, WA)
  • GNAC Men's Field Athlete of the Week (March 6): Jacob Ringold (So., Jumps, Vancouver, WA/Columbia River)
  • GNAC Men's Field Athlete of the Week (March 13): Brandon Pless(Jr., Throws, Sedro-Woolley, WA)
  • GNAC Men's Field Athlete of the Week (March 27): Brandon Pless (Jr., Throws, Sedro-Woolley, WA)
  • GNAC Women's Field Athlete of the Week (April 3): Bethany Drake (Sr., Throws, Sandy, OR)
  • GNAC Women's Field Athlete of the Week (April 17): Bethany Drake (Sr., Throws, Sandy, OR)
  • GNAC Women's Field Athlete of the Week (May 1): Anna Paradee (Jr., Pole Vault, Tacoma, WA/Decatur)
  • GNAC Women's Field Co-Athlete of the Week (May 8): Anna Paradee (Jr., Pole Vault, Tacoma, WA/Decatur)
  • GNAC/Red Lion Team of the Week (March 21)

Coming Up: The NCAA Division II Outdoor Track & Field Championships will be held May 25-27 in Bradenton, Fla.

WWU NCAA AUTOMATIC-QUALIFYING PERFORMANCES

Name

Event

Mark

NCAA II Rank

2017 GNAC Rank

Notable

Bethany Drake

Javelin

50.72m (166-5)

2nd

1st

PR (54.18m/177-9) No. 2 WWU history/No. 1 GNAC history

Anna Paradee

Pole Vault

4.01m (13-1.75)

6th

1st

WWU school record/GNAC record

WWU NCAA PROVISIONAL-QUALIFYING PERFORMANCES

Name

Event

Mark

NCAA II Rank

2017 GNAC Rank

Notable

Brittany Grant

1,500m

4:30.15

24th

5th

No. 2 WWU history

Brittany Grant

3,000m Steeplechase

10:32.60

15th

1st

No. 2 WWU history/No.6 GNAC history

Jasmine McMullin

Triple Jump

12.27m (40-3.25) 

T-19th

1st

No. 2 WWU history/No. 3 GNAC history

Kaylie Greninger

Heptathlon

4,570 points

43rd

4th

No. 3 WWU history

Brandon Pless

Shot Put

16.15m (53-0)

44th

2nd

No. 3 WWU history/No. 8 GNAC history

Brandon Pless

Hammer

54.98m (180-4 ¾)

52nd

4th

No. 3 WWU history

Andrew Wise

3,000m Steeplechase

9:16.39

43rd

4th

PR (9:05.64) No. 2 WWU history/No. 9 GNAC history

Gordie Kordas

Pole Vault

4.80m/15-9

T-41st

3rd

T-No. 6 in WWU history

Alex Barry

Javelin

62.30m (204-5) 

22nd

1st

No. 6 WWU history/No. 15 GNAC history

 

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