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College Track & Field: Sophie Wright, Joshua Caleb represent at NCAA D2 nationals

by | Mar 10, 2024 | Cover Story, Running, Track and Field, UAA

WWU’s Sophie Wright; UAA’s Joshua Caleb. Photos by WWU Athletics & Loren Orr

Palmer’s Sophie Wright and UAA’s Joshua Caleb earned second-team All-American honors at the NCAA Division II Indoor Track & Field Championships, held in Pittsburg, Kan.

Wright, a junior, ran the lead-off leg (1200) on Western Washington’s distance medley relay, which finished ninth in 11 minutes, 30.31 seconds.

Teammates Caitlyn Cheney (400), Emmy Kroontje (800) and Gabi Davis (mile) completed the squad. The quartet helped the Vikings qualify in the distance medley relay for the first time in 12 years.

While the time was just outside the program record (11:27.45) set by the quartet two weeks ago, the place matched the program’s second-highest showing in the event, behind a 7th-place finish in 2010.

Wright’s team earned second-team All-American honors for their efforts, just 0.66 seconds shy of achieving first-team All-American, while Adams State ran away with the title in 11:17.98.

UAA’s Joshua Caleb finished 11th in the 200 (21.65) and 15th in the 60 (6.84).

After joining the Seawolves in January, the freshman from Nigeria made history as the first men’s sprinter in program history to qualify for the indoor championships, earning second-team All-American honors in the 200.

Caleb, who set GNAC records in both the 60 (6.70) and 200 (21.18) three weeks ago and currently ranks in the top 16 globally among U20 athletes, was just 0.12 and 0.13 seconds from qualifying for the finals at the championships.

“Today was a learning experience for sure, but hopefully Joshua uses it as motivation,” said coach Ray Shadowens in a press release. “At the end of the day, he was the only freshman to qualify for the 60-meter. Not his best time, but he gained a lot by competing against the nation’s best.”

Kodiak’s Trevor Dunbar, an assistant coach at Virginia, contributed to a trio of top-12 finishes in the distance events at the NCAA Division I Indoor Championships. The men’s distance medley relay placed third, while UVA’s Margot Appleton and Gary Martin placed sixth and 12th in the mile, earning first- and second-team All-American honors.

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Family of Sponsors

Alaska Airlines | Nicole Johnston | Richard Mize | Advanced Diagnostics, INC | Aktive Soles | Alaska Oil and Gas Association | Aspen Endodontics | Black-Smith, Bethard & Carlson, LLC. | BOSCO's | Coho Financial Group | Continental Auto Group | Don Clary & Judy Besh | Glen Bailey | Invisalign-Ben Ward | JL Properties | Joey Caterinichio & Ja Dorris| Kathleen Navarre | Midas Alaska | Moose's Tooth, Bear Tooth and Broken Tooth Brewing | Perkins Coie - Sarah & A.J. Schirack | R&M Consultants, Inc. | RE/MAX Dynamic Properties Kevin Taylor | Residential Mortgage | Seth Wickersham & Alison Overholt | Taylored Restoration | Korndrop Family Foundation | Arctic Slope Regional Corporation | Replacement Glass | Zareena and Allen Clendaniel | Foley & Pearson | UAA Seawolves | Tony and Carla Slaton Barker | Sportclips Haircuts | Alliance for Support of American Legion Baseball in Alaska | Alice & Gunnar Knapp | Amy and Jason Miller | Burgerfi | Charles Fedullo | Dan Rufner | Darren Lieb | Don Winchester | Donley Family | Dr. Justin Libby, DDS | Firetap | Harlow Robinson | Jason & Shannon Metrokin | Jim & Michelle Hajdukovich | Joe Alston | Kathie Bethard | Krispy Kreme | Kristopher Knauss | Loren Kroon | Mark and Jamie Johnson | Mark Silverman | On the Border | Pete Robinson | Rick Mystrom | Team Heat | Team Moriarty | The Conway Family | Todd Whited | Moria Smith | In memory of Drs. John & Elizabeth Tower | Peter Pounds | Multisport Training of Alaska/Lisa Keller | RSA Engineering

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