Zags Capture Wins on Second Day of Buc Scoring
March 18, 2016
SPOKANE, Wash. -- The Gonzaga track teams had plenty to be excited about following the second day of the Buc Scoring Invite at Whitworth University Friday.
The Gonzaga men swept the top two spots of the 3,000-meter steeplechase. Kyle Branch ran the fourth-fastest time in program history at 9:23.21. He was followed closely by Kellen Manley at 9:29.48. Manley improved his seventh-best time in program history with his finish.
"Maggie ran right to the front of the 1,500 and she controlled the race," GU women's Head Coach Patty Ley said. "She was followed by Megan, who is starting to reap the benefits of her hard work and had a very nice early season race."
Jones later placed second in the 800 meters. Her time of 2:19.47 was slightly behind Whitworth's Kayla Leland's winning time of 2:16.70. Emily Anderson (2:24.76) and Zoe Urcadez (2:28.11) came in third and fifth.
"Maggie came back and ran out of her element a bit in the 800 racing shoulder-to-shoulder with the Whitworth athlete, who has just returned from indoor nationals, until the last 80 meters or so," Ley said. "She was followed by Emily who looked very strong early and finished solidly."
In the men's 10,000 meters, Jack Pearce led a top-four sweep of Zags. The sophomore placed first with a time of 31:36.73, just ahead of teammate Andy Thomas (31:40.91). Ben Stout (31:44.82) and Max Kaderabek (31:47.51) finished third and fourth.
"We had a nice 25-lap tempo," Director of Gonzaga Track Pat Tyson said. "The pack of four Zags were separated by a mere 11 seconds! It was great team running!"
Running unattached, Troy Fraley had a pair of victories Friday. He ran the third-fastest 1,500-meter time in Pine Bowl history at 3:49.14. The Kalispell, Mont. native also won the 800 meters with a time of 1:53.60.
"Molly Stroosma in only her second 1,500 has picked up where she left off at the end of last year," Ley said. "We also saw 1,500 bests from Jenny Albrecht and Kate Wagner in the second heat. Claren Fraher had to think quickly in the 400 meters when she realized a hurdle had been left on the track in her lane. Not the ideal situation for a fast time, but she handled it well.
"Very pleased with the opener for the women, we are in a good place to continue to improve and are excited for each week to unfold."
"This was our first outdoor competition of the season and we had a boatload of personal bests and a sweep of most of the distance races," Tyson said. "This sets us up for great things ahead as we prepare for Stanford and UCLA in two weeks! Our mission next week at the Mike Keller Invite is just to work on certain aspects of each race to give us added confidence. This is such a great group to work with! I'm really proud of them."
The Bulldogs return to competition at the Mike Keller Invitational on March 26. The meet is hosted by the University of Idaho in Moscow.
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