Women Finish Eighth, Men Finish Last At Track and Field Big Sky Championships


Whitney Bolar for The Easterner

Steaven Zachman (left) participation in the steeplechase during the Pelluer Invitational on April 8, 2017.

By Brandon Cline, Sports Editor

The EWU women’s track and field team finished eighth in the Big Sky Conference Outdoor Championships this past weekend in Sacramento, California, while the men’s team finished in last.

Senior pole vaulter Erin Clark was the program’s lone conference champion over the four-day event. Clark’s jump of 13 3/4 is the fifth-best vault in program history, and it is her first career Big Sky Conference title. Clark had come painstakingly close to winning the event in the past, finishing in second place in the 2016 outdoor championships with a jump of 12-9 1/2.

Senior Samantha Baker was the program’s other All-Big Sky athlete during the championships, finishing second in the javelin with a throw of 144-8. Baker is no stranger to the top of the leaderboard, finishing third in the 2016 outdoor championships.

“It was the highest finish for [Baker] over her collegiate career, so I was super happy for her,” said women’s head coach Marcia Mecklenburg to GoEags.com.

Junior Bridgette Underwood also posted a career-high finish in the javelin, with her throw of 140-1 being good enough for a fifth place finish.

Other notable performances from athletes on the women’s side include junior sprinter Rebecca Tarbert. After qualifying for the finals with a personal-best time of 11.89 in the 100-meter dash, Tarbert finished fifth in the championships with a time of 11.90.

In the triple jump, junior Dominique Butler just missed out on All-Big Sky honors with a fourth place finish, jumping 38-10 1/2.

“Performances of the day belong to [Butler] in the triple and [Tarbert] in the 100,” said Mecklenburg. “Those two kept the points coming.”

On the men’s side, one of the few bright spots of the championships was freshman Keshun McGee in the triple jump and long jump. McGee’s triple jump of 48-8 3/4 was good for a fifth place finish, while he placed seventh in the long jump with a mark of 23-6.

Senior Trenton Osborn finished just ahead of McGee in the long jump, taking sixth place with a jump of 23-8 1/4. Osborn’s had an illustrious college career, winning the 2015 indoors title in the long jump and finishing in second place in the 2014 indoors and 2015 outdoors championships.

Other finishers who earned points for the men’s team include sophomore Steaven Zachman in the steeplechase, finishing in eighth with a time of 9:23.60. The 4×100-meter relay team finished in seventh place with a time of 41.86.

“Our men’s team graduates one person, Austin Oser, which bodes well for us,” said men’s head coach Stan Kerr. “We will bring back a ton of experience for next year’s indoor and outdoor championships.”

Athletes who met qualifying criteria will participate in the NCAA West Regional Championships in Austin, Texas from May 25-27.