Even their best wasn’t good enough, but it was close.
The Idaho Vandals scored more points (138) than they ever have in a Western Athletic Conference outdoor meet but they still fell short of host Utah State’s 181-point total in the conference championships. The Vandals previous high total had been 124 in the 2006 meet.
The UI women finished seventh.
“I thought the team competed well,” Idaho co-coach Wayne Phipps said. “There were ups and downs, like you’ll have at every conference championship meet, but for every down we had another guy step up.”
Paul Dittmer ran a 14.03 to win the 110-meter hurdles and Lucas Pope won a jump-off after clearing 16 feet, 3/4-inches in the pole vault. Josh Dalton and Eugenio Mannucci both came from behind to claim titles, with Dalton rallying to win the 800 meters in 1:52.00 and Mannucci putting the shot 59-53/4 on his final attempt for the win. The 4x100 relay team of Sam Michener, Mike Carpenter, Dominic Schmidt and Elvie Williams took the Vandals first WAC relay title.
•Pac-10 championships: It was a disappointing first day in Eugene, Ore., for the Washington State men, with a disqualification in the men’s 4x100 relay, and the women, with Marissa Tschida more than 30 feet less than her best to finish fourth in the javelin (159-3) and two-time defending steeplechase champion Sara Trane finishing fifth (10:24.05).
But all was not lost for the Cougars, ninth in the men’s competition. Jeshua Anderson led a quartet who qualified for the 400-meter hurdle finals in 50.73. Anderson also won his flat 400 heat in 47.47. Sprinter Justin Woods had the fastest 100 time (10.30) and won his 200 heat in 21.09. Luke Lemenager won his 800 heat in 1:51.13. For the women, Lorraine King posted a season best by more than a second with a 58.97 in the 400 hurdles to finish second in her heat.
Meet host Oregon is leading both competitions, leading runner-up UCLA 88-45 in the men’s team battle while the Duck women have a 67-58 lead over second-place Stanford. The meet concludes today.
•Big Sky championships: Eastern Washington’s Nicole Luckenbach broke her school record in the hammer with a career-best toss of 191-11 – eighth best in conference history – as the conference meet concluded in Missoula. The Eagles women, who also won the 4x100 relay, finished with 55 points, eighth in the team competition won by Sacramento State.
Aaron Mettler also had a career-best, throwing the javelin 219-8 to win his second consecutive conference crown. He was joined by Stephen Praast in winning a men’s title after Praast high-jumped 6-83/4, a season-best by 2 inches. The Eagles finished fifth with 82 points. Northern Arizona (169) won.
Pac-10: Washington State couldn’t find a way to get to Oregon State freshman Sam Gaviglio and as a result the Beavers pulled away late en route to an 8-2 win at Corvallis, Ore., evening the conference series at a game apiece. The right-handed Gaviglio (8-1) gave up an unearned run in the second – Jay Ponciano’s two-out single scoring Greg Lagried, who had reached on an error – and a solo home run to Garry Kuykendall – the first of the sophomore’s career – in the fifth. WSU’s Chad Arnold (6-3) matched that until the bottom of the fifth, when the Beavers (13-10 in Pac-10 play, 31-15 overall) took a 3-2 lead. They then blew it open with five runs off five WSU (15-8, 27-22) pitchers in the sixth.
•Also in the Pac-10: Kyle Conley hit his 18th home run of the season and Jason Erickson won his fourth straight decision as Washington beat Arizona 7-4 in Tucson, Ariz. The Huskies (25-25, 13-9) are tied with UCLA for third place in the conference.
NWAACC Championships: Community Colleges of Spokane saw its season end with an 8-3 loss to Clackamas at Portland despite Ashley Fargher’s solo home run, part of a 10-hit attack.
The Sasquatch led 3-2 going into the seventh, but Clackamas put runners on second and third with one out. A single brought in the tying run, with the possible go-ahead run being thrown out at home. But obstruction was called on Spokane and Clackamas took the lead. Clackamas went on to score six runs and CCS failed to place in the conference tournament for the first time in 20 years.
CCS’ Heather Jackson had three hits and was named to the All-American team, as was Michelle Wells. Shelby Bethel took her first loss of the year for CCS (38-13).
•NCAA Regional: The Washington Huskies advanced to the Amherst Regional championship game with a 3-1 victory, thanks in part to three University of Massachusetts (30-9) errors that led to three unearned runs.
Danielle Lawrie (34-6) earned the win, yielding three hits while striking out 12. The Huskies (43-10) will face the consolation bracket champion at 5 tonight with a berth in the College World Series on the line.
NCAA regionals: The University of Washington will make its ninth NCAA Championship appearance in 10 years after finishing seven strokes behind UCLA in the Central Regional at Alvaton, Ky.
The Huskies, who led UCLA by seven strokes following the second round, completed early Saturday, faltered in the final round, posting the highest score among the top 10 finishers.
UW junior Nick Taylor finished second in the individual competition, shooting a 3-under-par 213 with a final round 76.
•Washington State junior Kevin Tucker shot a final-round 73 to finish at 6-over 226 and 62nd in the West Regional at Lake Merced Golf Club in Daly City, Calif. Tucker was only the second Cougar in history to earn an individual invitation to the tournament.
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