Batch and Winger Selected as NWC Track Athletes of the Week

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette University track and field runners Ian Batch (Jr., Eagle, ID/Capital HS) and Jena Winger (Jr., Bonney Lake, WA/Sumner HS) have been selected as the Northwest Conference Track Athletes of the Week for their efforts on Friday, April 4 at the Willamette Invitational. Batch and Winger each achieved a provisional qualifying time for the NCAA Division III National Championships during Friday night's Celebration of Distance at the Charles Bowles Track.

Batch was named NWC Men's Track Athlete of the Week after recording a time of 14:31.79 in the 5,000-meter run. He was the top collegiate finisher and took second overall behind Eddie Earnest-Jones from the Greater Boise Running Club, who won the event in 14:24.54.

Batch's time was more than 16 seconds faster than the NCAA provisional standard of 14:48 and was less than four seconds away from the automatic standard of 14:28. He lowered his personal-best time by 23.18 seconds.

Winger earned NWC Women's Track Athlete of the Week honors. She also competed in the 5,000-meter run and registered a time of 17:21.59. She finished second among collegiate runners and sixth overall. Kelly Fullerton of Team XO won the event in 17:01.32.

Winger, who also participates in cross country, was running the 5,000 in track and field for the first time during her career. Her time was more than 13 seconds under the NCAA provisional standard of 17:35.

She has now achieved NCAA provisional qualifying times in two events this season. On March 15, she became a provisional qualifier in the 3,000-meter steeplechase with a school record time of 10:51.06 during the WU/WOU/SOU Meet at the Charles Bowles Track.

Jena Winger achieved a time of 17:21.59 in the 5,000-meter run at the Willamette Invitational.

Jena Winger achieved a time of 17:21.59 in the 5,000-meter run at the Willamette Invitational.

Ian Batch runs at Charles Bowles Track.

Ian Batch runs at Charles Bowles Track.