The BYU women's track and field team celebrate their MWC Indoor Championship.
ALBUQUERQUE -- A dominant final day featuring three individual victories by the BYU women’s track and field team helped the Cougars win their third consecutive Mountain West Conference Indoor Track and Field championship.
“We had no letdowns at this meet,” head coach Patrick Shane said. “Everyone that competed for BYU this weekend competed hard and did very well. I am so proud of the entire team. This has been a fun year.”
When the final scores were tallied BYU came out ahead of second place TCU by 74.5 points, 181.5 to 107. New Mexico, San Diego State and Utah rounded out the top five teams. The championship marks the 10th BYU indoor MWC championship in 12 seasons in the conference.
In one of the meet’s most competitive events, Ada Robinson narrowly edged out Utah’s Iverson Langley for the high jump championship. Both athletes cleared a MWC meet record 1.85m (6-00.75) but Robison had fewer scratches, earning the junior the victory.
Also scoring for BYU in the high jump was junior Diana Blauer. Blauer took third in the event by clearing 1.76m (5-09.25).
“The high jump event signified what our team has been about all year,” Shane said. “Ada (Robinson) believed in herself and never gave up and that has been the mantra of our entire team this season.”
The 800m was one of the best events on the day for the Cougars as four BYU runners finished in the top eight. Junior Lacey Bleazard led the way in 2:05.65 to win her third straight MWC indoor 800m title and Nicole Clark crossed the line in 2:09.87 to place third. Katie Palmer, who broke the MWC meet record in her preliminary race Friday, finished sixth (2:14.31) and Sarah Edwards took eighth (2:14.84).
Palmer led the way for BYU in the one mile race, finishing first in 4:51.73 and scoring 10 team points for the Cougars. Four other BYU runners scored in the mile, with Kari Hardt in third (4:54.04), Stacy Slight in fourth (4:54.61), Candance Eddy in seventh (4:59.72) and Ashlee Thomas in eighth (5:00.40).
“Katie (Palmer) ran an 800m-mile combo and that is very hard to do,” Shane said. “She only had an hour break between the two races and beat some good runners in both races.”
Porshe Giddings led the Cougars in the sprints, taking third in the 60m and 200m. Giddings finished the 60m in 7.49, the second-fastest time in BYU history, and crossed the line in 23.87 in the 200m, the third-fastest time in BYU history.
In the 400m junior Natalie Stewart, who broke the BYU 400m record in her preliminary race Friday, finished third in 53.95.
Stewart also competed in the 4x400m relay, along with Giddings, Bleazard and Palmer. The foursome combined to run 3:42.28, good enough for second place.
Senior Mindy Sagers competed in the 60m hurdles final after placing third in the pentathlon on Thursday. Sagers tied a season best time in the event, finishing second in 8.53. Fatima Makakala took seventh in the hurdles, crossing the line in 8.76.
After taking the top three spots in Friday’s 5000m, the BYU distance runners were able to place two athletes in the top four of the 3000m on Saturday. Hardt took third in 9:52.49 and senior Cecily Lew finished a half-second behind in fourth (9:52.99).
Sophomore Elizabeth Wilson jumped a season best 11.88m (38-11.75) to take fifth in the triple jump while Melissa Keltner nabbed sixth with a jump of 11.74m (38-6.25).
A few BYU athletes will compete next Saturday in a Last Chance Invitational to try and qualify for the National Championships. Others will have the weekend off before heading to the National Championships on March 11 in College Station, Texas.
For final results CLICK HERE.
To see video from the MWC Championships CLICK HERE.