The University of Washington men’s weight throw record had stood untouched for more than four decades.
It took freshman Jayden White just three meets to break the long-standing mark.
The Everett High School alum surged atop the UW track and field program’s all-time weight throw list with a record-setting heave of 71 feet, 8 1/4 inches last Friday during the Husky Classic.
White’s mark was 2 3/4 inches farther than the previous school record, set by Scott Neilson in 1979. Neilson won seven NCAA national championships — three indoor titles in the weight throw and four outdoor titles in the hammer throw.
“If you would’ve told me that I would’ve broken the UW record three years ago, I probably would’ve laughed,” White said. “But going into this season, I thought it was something that was doable. It’s just kind of still surreal to me that the record is actually mine now.”
— Washington Track & Field (@UWTrack) February 27, 2021
In addition to breaking the 42-year school record, White’s heave earned him a trip to the NCAA Division I indoor national championships, which are slated for March 11-13 in Fayetteville, Arkansas.
To qualify, White needed to post one of the top 16 marks in Division I. His throw last Friday gave him the No. 15 mark, according to Athletic.net. He is one of just two underclassmen ranked in the top 16.
“It’s a super crazy feeling,” White said of qualifying for nationals. “… The level of competition is going to be extremely high — way higher than I’ve competed against before. But I’m excited and it should be super fun.”
White, who was featured in The Herald last month, surged to No. 2 on UW’s all-time weight throw list in his college debut with a mark of 68-9 3/4 on Jan. 29. He added about another foot in his second meet, improving his personal best to 69-10 3/4.
White then added nearly 2 more feet Friday to break the record and advance to nationals. Immediately after the throw, one of his teammates ran up and gave him a hug, and other teammates let out an ecstatic celebration.
“It was super exciting,” he said. “It’s funny, because I think my teammates were even more excited for me than I was for myself.”
During his junior year of high school, White placed second in the shot put and sixth in the discus at the 2019 Class 3A state championships. He also earned All-American honors in the hammer throw that summer, and he was an honorary All-American in the weight throw last year as a senior after the national competition was canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Because of the pandemic, White also lost out on the chance to compete for multiple state titles last spring. But he’s sure made the most of the opportunity to return to competition this winter.
“I’m excited to see what the future holds,” White said. “It’s kind of a funny feeling knowing that every single personal record I’m going to have from here on out is gonna be a new school record.”
Former Lake Stevens distance-running phenom claims Big 12 title
Taylor Roe added a Big 12 title to her lengthy list of distance-running accomplishments.
The former Lake Stevens High School star won the women’s mile at the Big 12 indoor track and field championships with a time of 4 minutes, 49.17 seconds Saturday in Lubbock, Texas.
Roe, a sophomore at Oklahoma State University, finished nearly eight seconds ahead of the next-closest runner. Her victory helped the Cowboys to a second-place finish in the women’s team standings.
The NCAA Division I cross country national championships are slated for March 15 on Oklahoma State’s home course in Stillwater, Oklahoma. The event’s selection show is this Sunday.
Roe is one of the most accomplished high school distance runners in Washington state history. She was a nine-time Class 4A individual state champion, with seven state titles in track and two in cross country.
Former GP star swimmer shines at SEC Championships
Matt King made quite a splash in the SEC last week.
The former record-breaking Glacier Peak High School swimmer captured gold and silver medals in the sprint freestyle events and was part of four top-three relay finishes at last week’s Southeastern Conference men’s swimming and diving championships in Columbia, Missouri.
King, a freshman at the University of Alabama, claimed the SEC title in the 100-yard freestyle with a winning time of 41.66 seconds — which is within just 0.14 seconds of the school record. He also took second place in the 50 freestyle at 18.96 seconds.
King helped the Crimson Tide claim the SEC title in the 400 freestyle relay with a school-record time of 2 minutes, 48.22 seconds. He also helped Alabama to a second-place finish in the 200 medley relay and third-place finishes in both the 200 freestyle relay and 400 medley relay.
King, a 2020 USA Swimming Olympic Trials qualifier, had a historic performance at the Class 4A high school state swim and dive championships last February. He broke a pair of overall state meet records in the 50 freestyle and 100 freestyle, both of which had remained untouched for nearly three decades.
The NCAA Division I men’s swimming and diving national championships are slated for March 24-27 in Greensboro, North Carolina.
Jackson softball alum named Big West pitcher of the week
Former Jackson High School softball standout Sophie Frost earned Big West Conference pitcher of the week honors.
Frost, a senior on the Cal State Fullerton softball team, tossed a pair of complete games last week while allowing only one run and seven hits in 14 innings pitched.
Frost yielded only one run and four hits in a 3-1 complete-game win over San Diego on Feb. 22. She struck out nine and walked three.
Frost then tossed a three-hit shutout in a 2-0 victory over Boise State on Saturday. She had four more strikeouts in that game.
This season, Frost has a 2.95 earned-run average in 42 2/3 innings pitched. She has limited opponents to a .215 batting average, while posting 41 strikeouts and 26 walks.
Frost was a second-team All-Big West selection both as a sophomore in 2018 and a junior in 2019.
Lynnwood alum Pivec waived by WNBA’s Dream
Former Lynnwood High School star basketball player Mikayla Pivec was wavied by the Atlanta Dream, the WNBA team announced on Feb. 21.
Pivec was selected by Atlanta with the No. 25 overall pick in last April’s WNBA draft. She chose to sit out the 2020 season for personal reasons, according to a tweet last May from the team’s public relations Twitter account.
During her decorated prep career at Lynnwood, Pivec was a two-time Washington state Gatorade Player of the Year in girls basketball. She led the Royals to the Class 3A state title as a junior in 2015.
Pivec then was a four-year starter at Oregon State University, where she finished as the women’s basketball program’s all-time leading rebounder. The 5-foot-10 guard also finished fourth in career assists and eighth in career scoring.
Pivec averaged 14.8 points, 9.3 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game last season while leading the Beavers to a 23-9 record. Oregon State was on track for a high seed in the NCAA Tournament before it was canceled because of the coronavirus outbreak. Pivec was named to the All-Pac-12 team in both her junior and senior seasons.
Pivec was the first Snohomish County native to be selected in the WNBA draft since Snohomish High School graduate Milena Flores was picked by the Miami Sol in 2000.