CORVALLIS, Ore. – A group of five will travel to The Farm and represent Oregon State in the 39th Stanford Track and Field Invitational at Cobb Track and Angell Field on Friday. The event, which includes more than 3,300 athletes and entrants from 114 four-year college programs is in its 39th year, and 30th consecutive.
“They’ve earned it by being healthy, training hard and doing a lot of things right,” Oregon State assistant coach Laura Harmon said of the five heading to this elite meet. “We want them to go out and see where they’re at, enjoy that experience and enjoy racing with some of top runners in country.”
Anderson will be running her first 1,500 in uniform for Oregon State. She’s run two 800s this season at both the OSU Invite on March 8 and the Oregon Preview on March 22. While redshirting her true freshman season in 2013, Anderson ran four 1,500s unattached and put forth her best time at the Oregon Twilight on May 3, finishing 11th in 4:36.33.
Schaer will also be in her first 1,500 of the young season after competing in the same 800s as Anderson in Corvallis and Eugene in March. The redshirt sophomore’s 1,500 PR came at the Oregon Relays on April 19, 2013 when she finished sixth in 4:30.46, a mark which is ninth on Oregon State’s all-time list.
“They’ve put in the work for the 1,500,” Harmon said of Anderson and Schaer. “As far as racing goes, this is something that they’re prepared for, both in terms of speed and in terms of strength. I wouldn’t be surprised if they both ran their best time or at least close to it.”
Taylor Nowlin, the most accomplished steeplechaser in OSU history, will run her race at 5:15 p.m. The senior, who completed a 2,000m version of the event at the Oregon Preview on March 22, last ran the 3,000 steeple at the Pac-12 Championships on May 11, setting a school record with a time of 10:36.75. Nowlin has competed in her signature event at Stanford twice previously, finishing in 10:50.70 at this same meet last season and in 10:52.54 at the Payton Jordan Invite on April 28, 2013.
“Her training has been going really well,” Harmon said of Nowlin. “She has strung together a lot of consistent weeks and months and has been feeling really good in workouts.”
Aly Nielson will kick things off for the Beavers on Friday in section five of the 5,000 at 10:40 a.m. This will be the fourth 5,000 of her career. Her best time at the distance came at the 2012 Stanford Invite when she ran 17:41.75. Already this season, the junior ran a 9:51.58 3,000 at the OSU Invite on March 8 and a 4:44.15 1,500 at the Oregon Preview on March 22.
Kinsey Gomez’s section of the 5,000 starts at 7:07 p.m. and will conclude Friday’s action for OSU. The junior, who appeared in the NCAA West Regional last season in this event, owns a 5,000m PR of 16:24.17 from the Mt. SAC Relays on April 19, 2013, the second-fastest time in school history. In previous trips to Stanford, Gomez ran 17:21.43 in the first 5,000 of her career on April 6, 2012 and improved that time to 16:38.79 at last season’s Stanford Invite.
“For both Aly and Kinsey we are looking for them to start ahead of where they did last season and their 5K bests,” Harmon said. “This season we’re shooting for Kinsey to qualify for regionals in the 10K. We’re going to go down to Mt. SAC in a couple of weeks as long as tomorrow goes as well as I think it should.”