All-American Amy Menlove won the women's pentathlon at the MWC Indoor Championships, marking her second career Conference win. Menlove is only the second MWC athlet to win this award twice. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
COLORADO SPRINGS -- The thin Colorado air didn’t slow down the BYU track teams, who broke out to a commanding lead on the first day of competition at the Mountain West Conference Indoor Championships.
The No. 15 BYU women’s track team set the tone with a first, second and fourth place finish in the pentathlon. The three marks put BYU in first place with 23 points. TCU finished in second with six points and Air Force owned third with four points.
“I’m extremely excited with where we are,” said BYU women’s track and field head coach Craig Poole. “Our athletes did a good job of putting themselves in a position to win. I’m looking forward to tomorrow and Saturday.”
All-American Amy Menlove won the MWC pentathlon for the second time in her career with a total of 4,018 points. Menlove is only the second MWC athlete to win the prestigious title twice.
“It was a great competition with great athletes,” said Menlove. “I thought Mindy Robins, Mindy Neeley and I performed well. We have a strong team and I think tomorrow and the rest of the meet should be really exciting.”
Finishing right behind Menlove was All-American teammate Mindy Neeley, who placed second in the pentathlon with 3,754 points. Neeley’s first-place performance in the high jump (5-07.75) is a season best and ranks third in the MWC standings.
The Cougar success continued with Robins. The sophomore’s fourth-place finish in the pentathlon (3,393 points) is a career best and places her fourth in the MWC standings.
Although not yet finished, day one marks a strong standing for the No. 18 BYU men’s team. Leading the heptathlon with a top-three landslide the Cougars have established a strong presence early on at the Air Force Academy.
Currently leading the championships and BYU is junior Phillip Bettis, having completed four of the six events for a total of 3, 023 points. Trailing by 44 points is BYU sophomore Meelis Kosk with 2, 979 points, while Justin Palmer closes in the top three tiers for the Cougars with 2,952 in third.
The heptathlon will resume Friday morning at 11 a.m. MST, beginning with the 60-meter hurdles, while the women will begin with the 5000- meter at 1 p.m. MST.