Zags Boost Washington Scoring at WAR IX
April 9, 2016
SPOKANE, Wash. -- The Gonzaga women's and men's track programs had productive days at the Northwest Scoring Clash (WAR IX) hosted by Spokane Falls Community College.
The ninth annual meet at the SFCC track featured several schools from Washington competing against programs from Oregon, Idaho and Montana.
Maggie Jones led from start-to-finish in the women's 1,500 meters. Her time of 4:36.53 was just off of her personal record of 4:34.25, which is third on the GU all-time list. Teammate Shelby Mills came in third at 4:43.39. Jordan Thurston broke her person record by 16 seconds at 4:43.90 and finished fourth.
"Our 1,500 runners were rolling today," GU women's Head Coach Patty Ley said. "Maggie ran very evenly and looked extremely strong. Jordan really got after it over the last 600 and garnered a big PR to surprise herself a bit. Emily Coic (5:10.24) and Emma Morris (5:11.71) also ran personal records."
Molly Foster ran the first 400-meter hurdles for Gonzaga since the `90s. She came away with a time of 1:10.59, which ranks second on the Bulldogs' all-time list. Emily Anderson ran the third-fastest women's 400-meter time in program history. She crossed the line at 1:00.79 in 11th place.
"Molly showed great potential in the hurdles," Ley said. "The day started very well with Amanda Kiefer (19:02.91) and Kelly Gilbert (19:12.15) going 1-2 in the early heat of the 5k. Both ran PRs. We had seven personal records, five season-best marks, and two top-10 times. We had terrific efforts on a beautiful hot day."
Mason Villarma ran the fourth-best 800-meter time in men's program history. The freshman crossed the line at 1:52.30. He got edged out at the line by Kinsly Smith, who ran unattached, with a time of 1:51.75.
In the men's 1,500 meters, Sumner Goodwin came in second at 3:51.82. His time ranks fifth all-time at Gonzaga. Troy Fraley, running unattached, narrowly won the event with a time of 3:51.38. Unattached Scott Kopczynski (3:54.19) held off Ian Goldizen (3:54.36) for third. Coby Eastwood was second in the first heat with a personal record 4:09.61.
Gonzaga swept the top three spots in the men's 5,000 meters led by a first-place finish from Kyle Branch. His winning time of 14:59.67 was just ahead of teammates Max Kaderabek (15:03.79) and Jack Pearce (15:07.51).
"Really good stuff from Graham and Sammy in their first-ever grueling 28-hurdle seven-water-jump experience," Director of Gonzaga Track Pat Tyson said. "I'm proud of both of them!"
Ciaran O'Leary opened the meet for the Zags Friday night. The freshman ran a 32.50.52 in the men's 10,000 meters. He started near 15th place, before moving up to his podium position of sixth.
"Overall, we got some really good stuff at a very hot WAR IX," Tyson said. "I'm really proud of our posse of Zag runners! We really dominated the day and helped the college teams from Washington win the meet."
A select number of Zags will run at the Mt. SAC Relays in Norwalk, Calif. Thursday. Gonzaga will also send some runners to the Oregon Relays Friday.
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