(Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)
PROVO, Utah – Led by freshman Shea Martinez and sophomore Lexi Eaton, BYU women’s track and field turned in a strong performance Friday at the Robison Invitational at the Clarence F. Robison Track and Field Complex.
“This was one of our best days of competition this season,” BYU coach Ed Eyestone said. “We certainly made progress toward our goal of qualifying 50 athletes (between the men and the women) for regionals.”
Freshman Shea Martinez had one of the top performances of the day, winning the 800 meters with a regional-qualifying time of 2:06.45, more than five seconds better than the second-place finisher.
“Shea clocked a great time,” Eyestone said. “She’s been getting better and better and looking stronger and stronger every race. Her time will be among the best in the country.”
Competing for the first time in almost two years, sophomore Lexi Eaton won the high jump. The basketball star who helped lead the Cougars to the Sweet 16 in the 2014 NCAA Tournament, cleared 5 feet, 10.75 inches, a height that ranks her among the top 20 in the nation and has her in the hunt for a spot in the regional meet.
“Lexi showed what a phenomenal athlete she is,” Eyestone said. “She's a gamer and she showed that she can bring it in the clutch."
Junior Martha Shepard had an impressive showing in the hammer throw, taking fourth with a career-best mark of 58.22 meters (191 feet, 0.25 inches).
BYU also had a strong showing in the 100 meter hurdles as underclassmen took three of the top five spots. Freshman Nicole Laws took second with a time of 14.41 while sophomores Anginae Monteverde and Kaylee Packham claimed fourth and fifth with times of 14.58 and 14.63, respectively. Laws and Monteverde notched career personal records while Packham’s time was a season best.
Two Cougars set personal records in the discus, led by senior Deezbaa Whaley, who took fifth with a throw that measured 48.78 meters (160 feet, 0.50 inches). Sophomore Madison Pachner was two spots behind Whaley in the standings with a career-best throw of 46.64 meters (153 feet, 0.25 inches).
The Cougars also had two of the top four in the pole vault. Senior Rachel Fisher and freshman Sierra Hansen both cleared 3.82 meters (12 feet, 6.50 inches) to take second and fourth, respectively.
The Robison Invitational continues on Saturday, beginning with the men’s hammer throw at 10 a.m. MT. Visit BYUtrack.com for the complete schedule.