Rachel Fisher cleared 4.00m to win the pole vault at the BYU Invitational. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)
PROVO -- After two days of competition, BYU track coaches and athletes were pleased with performances and are excited for the 2011 indoor season to get rolling.
Leading the way for the BYU women in the opening meet of the season was sophomore Rachel Fisher and the pole vault squad. Fisher won the event by clearing 4.00m (13-01.50) and was followed by teammate Christen Botteron in second at 3.90m (12-09.50).
Junior Kelli Ehardt took third in the pole vault at 3.80m (12-05.50) and freshman Elizabeth Portanova cleared 3.65m (11-11.75) to help the Cougars sweep the top four spots in the event.
“We are right where we thought we would be at this point,” BYU head coach Patrick Shane said. “We had some good performances today from a number of athletes and will look to improve as the month goes on.”
Senior Porshe Giddings led the way in the sprints for BYU with a 60m-dash win in 7.56. The time ties Giddings personal best and would rank as the fourth fastest time in BYU history.
The 800m run was also a strength for the BYU women as they swept the top four spots. Junior Stacy Slight took first in 2:15.01 and was followed by freshman Bethanie Krumen in second at 2:17.74. Natalie Stewart (2:23.10) and Amy Witt (2:26.12) took third and fourth, respectively.
BYU also had winning performances from Lindsay Sowards (mile), Alyssa Christensen (400m), Mindy Robins (60m hurdles and long jump) and Melissa Keltner (triple jump).
Junior Miles Batty won the mile in a time of 4:04.06, the fastest indoor mile time this season in the country. First place in the 800m went to junior Justin Hedin with a 1:51.09 time. BYU controlled the 3000m, taking the top six spots with sophomore Rex Shields winning with a time 8:21.70. James Ghormley, a junior, finished second in the 60m despite a sub-seven second time of 6.94.
The throwers looked good with Leif Arrhenius led the way by winning the discus with a throw of 58.10m (190-07.50), and finishing second in the shot put. Oliver Whaley also came up big with a win in the weight throw with a toss of 18.32m (60-01.25).
Senior Aaron Powell took home first place in the long jump with a jump of 7.05m (23-01.50), also nabbing the top spot in triple jump as well with a 14.74m (48-04.25) jump. The Cougars secured second and third place in the triple jump as well with junior Anse Myller DeArujo and Kyle Mills following Powell.
“For our first meet it was phenomenal and what a great start,” men’s head coach Mark Robison said. “I would foresee a lot of improvement over the next few weeks and it’s going to be a fun year.”
The top three spots of the high jump also went to the Cougars. Senior Phillip Bettis jumped personal best 2.05m (6-08.75) to win, with freshmen Parker Cressman and Dakota John behind him.
BYU also showed well in the pole vault, taking second, third and fourth place. Chris Little led the Cougars with a vault of 5.20m (17-00.75).
Complete results from the meet are available on www.runnercard.com
The men and women will continue their season January 14 as they travel north to Pocatello, Idaho to compete at the Idaho State Invitational.