(Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
ALBUQUERQUE -- The Cherry and Silver Invitational proved once again to be a meet of great success for the Cougars, with three athletes accomplishing a combined four provisional qualifying marks, and with several others achieving personal best times.
“This was a very good meet for us, and we achieved some great marks,” head coach Craig Poole said. “Today was highlighted especially by Mindy McClurkin, the Stewart sisters and Kari Clark, but everyone did very well.”
Nachelle Stewart showed her ability in the 800-meters, placing second in the event with a personal best and provisional qualifying time of 2:06.63. Her sister Natalie also ran a great race in the 400-meters, placing second with a time of 54.72.
Competing for the first time since the BYU Indoor Invitational on January 9, McClurkin came out strong, running personal best times in the 60-meters and 200-meters, while also provisionally qualifying in the 200-meters (23.77) and the long jump (20-09.75).
“Today really went a lot better than I perceived it would,” McClurkin said. “I had great runs in the 60 and the 200, breaking my indoor personal records. Overall I would say I am really happy, and today was a really fun day.”
Carrying the momentum from the last week’s meet Clark reached a provisional qualifying mark in the pole vault, placing second with a vault of 4.00m (13-01.50). This week marked the second consecutive week Clark has vaulted over thirteen feet.
Junior Porshe Giddings contributed to the Cougars success as well, running a season best 24.94 to place fourth in the 200-meter dash. Senior Sarah Frey also continued to improve, placing second in the 3000-meter run in 10:29.87.
The Cougars also placed well in the high jump, with Ada Robinson (5-08.00) and Diana Blauer (5-06.00) placed third and fifth respectively.
The weight throw proved a success for the throwers, with two athletes placing in the top three. Junior Tipaleli Fotu took second in the event, with a throw of 17.44m (57-02.75. Senior Deezbaa Whaley followed close behind, finishing in third with a distance of 17.12m (56-02.00).
“We are fast moving to where we want to be,” Poole said. “Ada and Diana both jumped well, and our throwers put up some really great marks.”
The Cougars will continue their season next weekend, as the team will send one group of athletes to Seattle, Washington for the Washington Invitational, and another group of athletes to Boise, Idaho for the Boise Invitational.