Ten athletes from BYU men's track and field team will compete at the NCAA Outdoor National Championships in Fayetteville, Ark. beginning Wednesday. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)
PROVO -- Looking to top off its season, 10 athletes from the BYU men’s track and field team will travel to Fayetteville, Ark. to compete at the NCAA Outdoor National Championships beginning Wednesday.
“Obviously we’re excited to have as many athletes going to nationals as we do,” said BYU men’s track and field head coach Mark Robison. “Our goal is to have as many be All-American as we possibly can and to score as many points as we can to be in the top 25. Our team is healthy and I feel positive about its ability to advance and score well for our team.”
The majority of the men’s competitors will be competing in day one of the competition, beginning Wednesday.
Events for BYU begin at 11:30 a.m. CT with the decathlon. Sophomore Meelis Kosk, No. 24, will go up against 24 athletes beginning with the 100 meter dash, followed by the long jump, shot put, high jump and 400 meter dash.
Following the decathlon, the qualifying round for the men’s pole vault will begin at 4:30 p.m. CT. Senior Bob Low goes into the competition ranked No.6 with a height of 5.45 meters (17 feet 10.5 inches). Low’s height earned him a spot tied for fourth in the BYU record books earlier this season.
After the pole vault, sophomore Blaine Baker, No. 16, will compete in the javelin throw beginning at 8:00 p.m. CT. Baker’s season-best mark of 68.76 meters (225 feet 7 inches) earned him a second-place spot in the BYU record books.
Senior All-American Kyle Perry, ranked No. 4 nationally and junior regional champion Richard Nelson, No. 15, will go to battle in the 3000 meter steeplechase. Perry goes in with a time of 8:40.20 with Nelson close behind in 8:47.98. The steeplechase is scheduled to begin at 8:15 p.m. CT.
The remaining events for the Cougars, the decathlon, the 4x400 meter relay and the 10,000 meter run will begin Thursday.
Kosk will begin day two of the decathlon at 2 p.m. CT beginning with the 110 meter hurdles, followed by the discus throw, pole vault, javelin throw and 1500 meter run.
Freshmen Rhyan Atrice will be joined by juniors Kevin Ahlstrom, All-American Kevin Biesinger and Rob Skidmore to compete in the qualifying round of the 4x400 relay at 8:40 p.m. CT. The team goes in with a No. 17 automatic qualifying time of 3:08.49.
Finishing off Thursday’s events will be the final round of the men’s 10,000 meter run, where senior Stephan Shay, No. 25, will represent the Cougars. Stephan enters the competition with a season time of 28.56.71. The race will begin at 9:45 p.m. CT.
The final rounds of the men’s javelin, pole vault and 4x400 meter relay will be Friday.
Cougars Competing at Nationals
Name Event First Competition
Meelis Kosk Decathlon Wed., 11:30 a.m.
Bob Low Pole Vault Wed., 8 p.m.
Blaine Baker Javelin Wed., 8 p.m.
Kyle Perry 3000m Steeplechase Wed., 8:15 p.m.
Richard Nelson 3000m Steeplechase Wed., 8:15 p.m.
Kevin Ahlstrom 4x400m relay Thurs., 8:40 p.m.
Rhyan Atrice 4x400m relay Thurs., 8:40 p.m.
Rob Skidmore 4x400m relay Thurs., 8:40 p.m.
Kevin Biesinger 4x400m relay Thurs., 8:40 p.m.
Stephan Shay 10000m Thurs., 9:45 p.m.
* All Times Central