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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Locally: Linda Lanker receives prestigious track and field honor

Linda Lanker, center, has coached many of the area’s top hurdlers, including state champion Jared Evans, right, of Valley Christian in 2000. (File The Spokesman-Review)
Linda Lanker, center, has coached many of the area’s top hurdlers, including state champion Jared Evans, right, of Valley Christian in 2000. (File The Spokesman-Review)

Linda Lanker has won national championships, earned coaching acclaim locally and nationally and served tirelessly in her more than four decades involved in track and field.

Last weekend in Orlando, Florida, Lanker was recognized for all of that – and more – when she received the USA Track & Field President’s Award from outgoing USATF president Stephanie Hightower at the organization’s annual meeting.

“Linda Lanker has worn many hats during her decades of track & field, giving her time as a coach, administrator, official and athlete,” read the release announcing her selection as one of six to receive the prestigious award.

“Lanker has dedicated much of her service to USATF committees, including her current role on the Law & Legislation Committee.

“A tremendously successful hurdles coach, Lanker has volunteered much of her hurdle knowledge to USATF athletes as a national team coach and team manager for multiple international competitions,” the release read. “A tireless member of USATF Inland NW, Lanker is the association’s chairperson for both men’s and women’s track & field.”

A former Valley Christian and Coeur d’Alene High School head coach, Lanker continues as the Coeur d’Alene High and Community Colleges of Spokane hurdles coach, the latter a role she’s filled for 18 years. She’s also been a longtime volunteer at Washington state high school track meets, especially the small-school meet at Cheney.


Maybe it was the antlers, maybe it was just a hot hand. Whatever the driving force, Raymond Worthey was dominant in winning the Junior Bowlers Tour stop at Sunset Bowling Center in Coeur d’Alene last Sunday.

Worthey, in keeping with the spirit of the season, wore festive antlers all day and had just one of his nine games under 200, capping the day with a 225-190 victory over No. 2 qualifier John Hilden in the championship match.

Worthey had high game of the day, a 278, and also rolled 940 four-game series in the first round of qualifying. He followed that with an 896 in match play to take the No. 1 seed into the five-person roll-offs.

Hilden had a 957 series in match play to claim the No. 2 seed and Clint Norlen had an 880 and qualified third. Norlen wound up third, Nic Riorden was fourth and Blake English fifth as their finishes matched their qualifying positions.

Dinah Seymour had high game for the girls, a 216.

After a holiday break, the JBT will return Jan. 8 at Cheney Bowl.

College scene

Madison Hovren, the U.S. Military Academy sophomore from Central Valley, earned Patriot League Player of the Week in women’s basketball for the third consecutive week after posting three double-doubles the week of Dec. 4-10.

Hovren, who averaged 17.0 points and 12.3 rebounds as she extended her double-double streak to six games, leads the Patriot League with averages of 18.9 points, 10.2 rebounds and a .489 field-goal percentage. Army went 2-1 in that stretch, improving its record to 8-2.

    Christian Jurlina, a Whitworth senior forward from Sydney, Australia, was named the Northwest Conference Student-Athlete of the Week in men’s basketball for the week of Dec. 5-11 after averaging 19.0 points and 8.5 rebounds as the seventh-ranked Pirates split two games.

He shot 58.3 percent from the field and hit 3 of 5 3-pointers and 7 of 8 free throws. He also added two assists, two steals and a blocked shot.

    Mikayla Ferenz, an Idaho sophomore forward from Walla Walla, is the Big Sky Conference Women’s Basketball Player of the Week after scoring a career-high 34 points as the Vandals beat Wyoming 74-71 in their only game of the week to snap a five-game losing streak. Ferenz hit 13 of 24 shots from the floor, including 3 of 7 3-pointers, and added five rebounds.

  • A couple of communication majors, sophomore soccer player Jenny Chavez and senior football player Samson Ebukam, are the Eastern Washington Scholar-Athletes of the Month for November.

Chavez, a midfielder from Newhall, California, with a 3.42 GPA, is the female choice after earning first-team All-Big Sky honors as the Eagles captured the conference title and won an NCAA tournament game for the first time.

She was also named to the National Soccer Coaches Association of America NCAA Division I Women’s All-Pacific Region third team, the first Eagle to earn regional honors.

Ebukam, a defensive lineman from Portland with a 3.25 GPA, earned male honors as the Eagles went 3-0 in November. The first-team All-Big Sky selection was responsible for three sacks in November and had at least one tackle in every game this season, including a season-high eight in a Nov. 12 game against Idaho State.

  • A couple of athletes who capped their seasons by earning All-America recognition, Duke DeGaetano and Kayla Leland, are the Whitworth student-athletes of the month for November.

DeGaetano, a senior football running back from Bend, Oregon, claimed the men’s honor after averaging 148 all-purpose yards per game as the Pirates won twice in the month. He scored five touchdowns, four rushing, and broke the school single-season rushing touchdown record with 21. He capped the month by being named a CoSIDA first team Academic All-American.

Leland, a junior from Gonzaga Prep with freshman eligibility, was the female choice for her performance in the NCAA Division III West Regional and national championship cross country meets. She finished third in the West Regional to lead the Pirates to an upset team title and placed 12th in the D-III NCAA Championships to earn All-America recognition.

    Jakob Granlund, a Gonzaga senior forward from Denmark, was named to 2016 NSCAA Men’s Soccer Scholar All-West Region team with a 3.66 grade-point average in business administration. Players were selected for their contributions on the field as well as success in the classroom.


Steve Hudson and Bob Guerin received two games each when seven members of the Spokane Collegiate Football Officials Association were selected for postseason assignments.

Hudson was the back judge in the Pac-12 championship game between Washington and Colorado and will work the same position in the Fiesta Bowl on Dec. 31, the national semifinal between Ohio State and Clemson.

Guerin was the head linesman in two FCS playoff games, a first-round matchup between Illinois State and Central Arkansas, and the quarterfinal between Sam Houston and James Madison.

Other SCFOA selections, their positions and games: Shane Anderson, side judge, Pac-12 championship game; John Love, center judge, Quick Lane Bowl (Boston College vs. Maryland); Steve Currie, field judge, Citrus Bowl (LSU vs. Louisville); and Jim Northcott, replay official, and Dan Antonietti, communicator, both Music City Bowl (Nebraska vs. Tennessee).

Letters of intent

WSU women’s rowing – Emma Barrett, Vienna, Virginia; Jordyn Brounstein, Petaluma, California; Colombe de Rouvroy, Auckland, New Zealand; Isabelle Gahard, coxswain, Mercer Island, Washington; Emma Gribbon, Victoria, British Columbia; Lisa Gutfleisch, Heidelberg, Germany; Kateryna Maistrenko, Kiev, Ukraine; Juliet Perry, coxswain, Black Diamond, Wash.

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