The women's team is young and strong in 2007 (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
The BYU women's track and field team is young but anxious to show their talent on the track. Many of the up-coming freshmen have set records at their previous schools.
"We have a young team that is emerging," said women's head coach Craig Poole. "We have some new faces, both freshman and transfers. We have high expectations of being back in the drivers seat in conference. We expect to be sending many athletes back to nationals."
The distance group is strong again this year with the return of two All-Americans in the steeplechase. Kassi Andersen and Amy Fowler lead a lead a talented group of athletes that looks to be a formidable foe in conference and at nationals. Carlee Clark and Laura Taylor will help in the 800 meters. Heidi Magill and Sarah Heiner performed well last year for the Cougars in the 1500 meters. Breanne Sandberg and Sarah Ingebretsen both have impressive resumes in the longer events. Julie Meads is another All-American that will add dimension to this team, as does new comers Jenna Taylor and Amber Duffin, who had great XC seasons and will help the distance team.
The Cougars are returning a strong javelin corp. of Tiffany Arrhenius, Piret Kuresson and Sarah Butler. All three were region qualifiers in the javelin. BYU has also recruited some great talent. Newcomer, Madara Dzalbe from Latvia is going to make an impact on the scoreboard. She was one of the top competitors at the Junior World Championships, and comes in with marks good enough to make a splash in the MWC. Returning junior, Tipaleli Fotu will be joined in the hammer throw by transfer Rachelle Nevitt, who was an All-Region selection at Northern Arizona University. Another newcomer that will step into the ring is Michelle Amete from Mesa Community College. She was the Junior College Champion in the shot, weight throw, and hammer. She took second in the discus.
The Cougars have All-American Jennifer Grossarth as a model of hard work to lead the sprinting corp. Mary Bennion is back from a mission and will add to the lineup. Some of the newcomers could make an instant impact too. Kindy Longmore will be a great asset for the team. She was the 100 and 200 meter Idaho State Champion.
The trio of Diane Stewart, Kathryn Beck, and Nicole Nevitt will rack up points for BYU in the 400 hurdles. Sarah Lacey will be the major threat in the 100 hurdles.
All-American triple jumper Kamila Rywelska is healed and coach Poole thinks she will have a strong season. The Cougars are excited to have her contribution in Indoor and Outdoor competition. Mindy Neeley is also proving she is ready to go far in the long jump. Heptathloner and long jumper, JennaBree Tollestrup will be back in her second season. She worked hard in the offseason and will score points for the Cougars this spring. Freshman Tara Andersen shows promise to be an immediate impact for the team. In the high jump Kristin Hirst, Ashley Payne and Sarah lacey should give us good balance. And in the pole vault, Regional qualifying Julene Kaufusi returns with Ashley McAllister and sister Kari McCallister. Kelly Farr should have a great season as well.