George Fox Tops 2019 Women's Track & Field Preseason Coaches Poll

George Fox Tops 2019 Women's Track & Field Preseason Coaches Poll
Rk.

School

Pts.

'18 NWC Championship Finish

1

George Fox

49 (7)

1st

2

Whitworth

42

2nd

3

Linfield

36

3rd

4

Pacific Lutheran

32 (1)

4th

5

Pacific (Ore.)

23

5th

6

Willamette

22

6th

7

Lewis & Clark

11

7th

8

Puget Sound

9

8th

 (Points awarded on a 7-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis. Coaches could not vote for their own teams; numbers in parentheses indicate first place votes)

 

HILLSBORO, Ore. – The George Fox Bruins were selected as the Northwest Conference women’s track & field favorite for the 2019 season, as voted on by conference coaches. 

Entering the 2019 season as the reigning NCAA National Co-Champions, the Bruins racked up 49 points and seven first-place votes in the poll. After sweeping the NWC Championships for the second consecutive year, the Bruins earned nine All-West Region accolades and advanced eight to the NCAA Championships. In La Crosse, the Bruins finished tied with the University of Massachusetts Boston with 44 points and named seven NCAA All-Americans, including the winning 400-meter relay. Head coach John Smith earned Coach of the Year honors, while women’s assistant coach Adam Haldorson earned Women’s National Assistant Coach of the Year.

Among those returning in 2019 are Sarah King (Carlton, Ore.), Kennedy Taube (Hillsboro, Ore.), Sara Turner (Boring, Ore.), and Lis Larsen (Everett, Wash.) of the winning 400-meter relay as the Bruins pursue another NCAA Championship title.

Whitworth ranks second in the poll with 42 points at one first-place vote. The Pirates were headed by NWC Track Athlete of the Year Kayla Leland in the 2018 season as they recorded a second-place NWC Championship team finish and sent eight to the NCAA Championships, where they tied for a ninth-place finish. The Pirates will be led in 2019 by All-Americans Marissa Mount (San Jose, Calif.), who finished fourth nationally in the steeplechase, and Isabel Clark (Colbert, Wash.), who recorded a sixth-place finish in the heptathlon.

Linfield tallies 36 points to rank third in the poll. The Wildcats ran to a third-place finish at the 2018 NWC Championships, where returner Mehana Sabado-Halpern (Hilo, Hawaii) captured the long jump title at the NWC Championships. Advancing four to the NCAA Championships, Dana Brooks (Pleasant Hill, Ore.) took 21stin the javelin throw. Sabado-Halpern and Brooks will return to help lead the Wildcats in the 2019 season. 

Pacific Lutheran earned one first-place vote in the poll, accumulating 32 points to rank fourth. The Lutes recorded a fourth-place finish at the 2018 NWC Championships. Kelsey Hathaway (Gladstone, Ore.) recorded a third-place finish in the 400-meter race, while Bailey Forsyth (Langley, Wash.) took second in 100-meter dash. Lauren Wilson (Olympia, Wash.) recorded a runner-up finish at the NWC Championships and a fourth-place finish at the NCAA Championships in the high jump to earn All-America honors. Wilson, Hathaway and Forsyth return to head the Lutes’ efforts in the 2019 season.

Pacific (Ore.) ranks fifth in the poll with 23 points. The Boxers recorded a fifth-place NWC Championships finish, led in part by Karen Du’s (Santa Clarita, Calif.) shot put victory. Du returns a senior in 2019 to lead the Boxer women’s team. The Boxer distance corps will be led by senior Serena Wallace (Centralia, Wash.), who was a national qualifier in the fall at the NCAA Cross Country Championships and fellow senior Stephenie Spencer (Bothell, Wash.), who in 2017 was the conference champion at 10k and fifth in the 5k. 

Willamette earned 22 points in the poll to rank sixth. The Bearcats finished in sixth place at the2018 NWC Championships, led largely by All-West Region honoree Hope Duenas’ (Covina, Calif.) title in the discus throw, as well as the sprinters earning a third-place finish in the women’s 1600-meter relay. Afterqualifying for the NCAA Championships, Duenas recorded a 20 th -place finish with a 129’4”throw. Duenas, alongside Grace Crookham-Guy (Boise, Idaho) and Isabel Solano (Newport,Ore.) of the 1600-meter relay will return to the Bearcats roster in 2019.

Lewis & Clark ranks seventh in the poll, earning 11 points. Returning after a seventh-place team finish and sixth-place 400-meter relay finish at the 2018 NWC Championships, Morgan Taylor (Brighton, Colo.) and Emily Tash (Los Angeles, Calif.) will return for the Pios in 2019.

Puget Sound rounds out the poll with 9 points to rank eighth. Coming off of an eighth-place NWC Championships finish, the Loggers look to a roster of four seniors to lead the team in the upcoming season.

While transitioning from the indoor season, outdoor competition will begin for many NWC teams on Saturday, March 2nd.