WWU men defend title at GNAC Championships


Led by the record-setting performances of sprinter Alex Donigian and hurdler Peter Maguire, the Western Washington University men's team successfully defended its conference title in final-day action Saturday, Feb. 22, at the 11th annual Great Northwest Athletic Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships in Nampa, Idaho

On the women's side, WWU placed fourth despite a pair of individual event triumphs by Tanya Bjornson, who set a school record in the 60 hurdles Saturday.

Donigian, who was named Outstanding Male Performer of the meet, set school and meet records in winning both the 60 and 200 meter dashes as the Viking men won a total of six events, three on Friday, on their way to posting 157 points, 23 ahead of second-place Alaska-Anchorage.

Donigian won the 60 in 6.75, lowering his own school and GNAC record by 0.01 of a second, and also establishing a new meet record. He claimed the 200 in a school and meet record time of 21.79.

The 200 mark gave Donigian provisional qualifying status for the NCAA Division II National Championships. He was already a provisional qualifier in the 60, with his markSaturday just 0.01 seconds off automatic qualification.

Maguire claimed the 60 hurdles in a school and meet record time of 8.24, becoming the third Viking this season to reach the provisional qualifying standard in that event. Logan Myers was third (8.32).

Bjornsson won the 60 hurdles in a time of 8.72, knocking 0.07 of a second off her own school-best set last year and improving on her provisional status for the national championships. Bjornsson, who also won the long jump Friday, was second in the 60-meter dash (7.89).

Bjornsson was the only event winner for the WWU women Saturday, but Sydney Coffey placed second in the 400 (57.46).

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