Western Washington University men’s sprinter Alex Donigian set school and conference records, running the fastest 100 meters nationally in NCAA Division II this season with a 10.27 clocking in an invitational race at the 88th Annual Nike Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays on Saturday, March 28, at Mike A. Myers Stadium on the University of Texas campus.
Just over 7,000 athletes from around the nation, including high school, collegiate, club professionals and national team members participate in the three-day meet.
Donigian placed third in his heat and 11th overall in the 17-man field which was made up almost entirely of club professionals and national team runners. Yoshihide Kiryu, a member of the Japanese national team, finished first in 9.87 seconds.
Donigian’s time automatically qualifies him for the NCAA II national championships in May. It bettered his own WWU record (10.46) by nearly two seconds and the Great Northwest Athletic Conference standard (10.38) held by Northwest Nazarene’s Rimar Christie by over one.
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On Friday, Donigian was the only non-Division I athlete competing in the collegiate 100, placing fourth in his heat and 11th overall with a time of 10.50.
WWU assistant coach David Burnett, who was accompanying Donigian on the trip, knew the meet director and was able to obtain permission for his runner to compete in the invitational race.
“Alex executed the race plan perfectly,” said Burnett. “He got off to a great start and made an excellent transition, which he’s been working on, at the 50-meter mark.”
Two weeks ago, Donigian placed second in the 60 meters at the NCAA II indoor nationals, just .001 separating him from the winner. He was officially clocked in 6.72 seconds, tying his own school and GNAC records.