Vikings show top-to-bottom improvements at Bryan Clay Invitational despite delayed start


AZUSA, Calif. —

Good things come to those who wait. The old adage came true for Portland State’s track team Friday at the Bryan Clay Invitational. Originally scheduled to start racing at 4 p.m., the Vikings’ first race on Friday didn’t take place until 9:35 p.m., while some of the Vikings ran up to six hours after the scheduled competition date.

But once again, the Vikings’ patience was rewarded as six of the seven team members who raced Friday set a personal or seasonal best. Every Viking Friday in competition ran the 1,500 meters – another scheduling oddity – making the day a showcase of half distances for the Vikings.

Luke Ramirez and Sam Lingwall, originally slated to close out the Vikings’ night, ended up being the team’s first runner on the track following the schedule changes. Both runners set the tone for the evening to come, as they each achieved personal bests in their respective sections of the men’s 1,500m Open A section.

Ramirez finished in 3:50.10, almost seven tenths of a second faster than his previous record in the event. Ramirez’s time ranks him fifth all-time in the event at Portland State, and he remains the second-fastest Viking over the distance in the past 21 years.

Lingwall, meanwhile, dipped under 3:54 for the first time finishing in 3:53.92. Lingwall’s time was two seconds faster than his season-opening time of 3:55.94 at the L&C Spring Break Open on March 19. Lingwall also set a personal best in the 5k two weeks ago at the Hayward Premiere, finishing in 14:29.77.

The event of the evening for the Vikings may have been the Open B section of the women’s 1,500 metres, however, as Olivia Brooks, Phoebe Brown and Nathalie Martino combined to produce two seasonal bests of 13 seconds and a personal best of 10 seconds. Brown and Brooks were the first two on the track and produced the two best season times of 13 seconds. Brown was first on the track, finishing in 4:55.04, well ahead of her time of 5:08.31 two weeks ago at the NW Distance Jamboree. Brooks then followed with a time of 4:51.31 in his section, 13 seconds – again – ahead of his time at the NW Distance Jamboree (5:04.54).

Martino then closed out the event with some flair, as she edged out Chico State’s Alexi Steinmaus to win her heat in 4:46.71. Martino’s time was just under 10 seconds faster than his time of 4:56.35 at the NW Distance Jamboree.

Cam McChesney then closed the night with his first 1,500 meters in under 4 minutes, finishing in 3:58.05. McChesney’s time was nearly three seconds faster than his previous record of 4:00.86, which he set last year as a rookie at the Lewis & Clark Spring Break Classic.

Drew Seidel almost gave the Vikings another season-best in the 1,500 meters, as he finished in 4:10.97 in the section before McChesney. Seidel’s time was just a hair’s breadth from his finish at the NW Distance Jamboree, where he crossed the finish line in 4:10.89.

Friday night’s 1,500-meter races wrapped up the Bryan Clay Invitational for the Vikings, though the team will compete again tomorrow in Portland at the L&C Invite. None of Friday’s runners will make it to this meet, however, as they earned a thrill Saturday after a late night of quality racing in the Los Angeles area.

Brian Clay invitation
Cougar Athletics Stadium
Azusa, California.
April 14-15, 2022

Women results:
1,500m (open B): 19. Nathalie Martino, 4:46.71; 40. Olivia Brooks, 4:51.31; 61. Phoebe Brown4:55.04. 5,000m (open B): 14. Samy Burke17:45.96. 5,000 m (open a section 3): 23. Abi Swain18:05.13.

Men’s results:
800m: 60. Chase Lovercheck, 1:51.40; T-108. james bottrill1:53.46. 1,500 m (open A): 50. Luke Ramirez, 3:50.10; 113. Sam Lingwall3:53.92. 1,500m (open B): 48. Cam McChesney, 3:58.05; 119. Drew Seidel4:10.97. 5,000m (open B): 27. Zach Grams, 14:45.46; 62. Abdi Ibrahim14:57.81. 5,000 m (open a section 3): 14. Keynan Abdi14:12.71.

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