Kassi Andersen and Lisa Antonelli Gear Up to Lead the Women's Team in the 2004 Indoor Season
PROVO -- After ending their 21-year conference title streak the Cougars are back in the 2004 season to battle for the MWC outdoor championship title and add a six straight MWC Indoor Championship title. The team will look to improve on last year's 13th place at indoor nationals and 15th place at the outdoor championships.
Overall, the team is lead by a strong pack of jumpers consisting of junior high jumper Lindsey Metcalf a two-time All-American, senior heptathelete Anna-Lee Walcott and junior heptathelete Maret Komarova.
Returning to the team for the 2004 season will be the entire All-American distance medley relay team who placed second at the 2003 NCAA Indoor Nationals. Leading that group are seniors Aneta Lemeisz and Michaela Mannova, along with junior Jennifer Rockwell and sophomore Kassi Andersen.
The depth of talented distance runners will also anchor the team. After a strong cross country season, All-Americans Andersen, Mannova, Laura Turner and Lisa Antonelli will lead the Cougars distance crew. Also adding depth will be Suzanna Larsen in the 10,000 meter.
The team will look to add a third NCAA Outdoor Steeplechase championship title to the duo Mannova and Andersen's two year reign at the top. Last year Andersen's 9:44.95 3,000 meter steeplechase finish clocked the third fastest time in US history and set a new NCAA and BYU record.
Additionally, Coach Shane expects several other individuals to qualify for Nationals. Among those, true freshmen Julie Cameron, Carolyn Quebe and Amber Harper will look to make their mark on the track this season.
Beyond the distance team the throwers are expected to be as strong or if not stronger than last years team. Leading the throwers this season will be junior Chelsea Forsythe and senior Malita Bingham.
Coach Legas said he also expects the pole vaulter's trio of senior Alicia Thompson, sophomore Kristen McGregor and new comer Makenzie Hobbs, to help the team place even higher this year.
Standing behind the top leaders the Cougar track team is very young and hopes to show strength with new freshman and foreign recruits. Several bright additions to the team are freshmen Amy Menlove from Sandy, Utah; Laura Evans for Idaho Falls, Idaho and Jessica Borchers from Boise, Idaho.
"Having taken second last year at the Outdoor MWC Championships broke our long standing record," women's head coach Craig Poole said. "This is our year to redeem ourselves and bounce back to our No. 1 station."