Gardner Breaks School Record at BYU Cougar Indoor Invite
PROVO, Utah – BYU sprinter Jaslyn Gardner clocked a 7.31 in the women’s 60m dash to break the school record at the BYU Cougar Indoor Invitational on Saturday.
Gardner held the previous school record (7.39) in the women’s 60m, set at the start of her sophomore season at the 2020 BYU Indoor Invite. The junior sprinter wasn’t done moving up the BYU record board, recording a personal-best 24.23 in the 200m, the eighth-fastest time in school history.
Easton Bianchi clocked a 6.72 to win the men’s 60m, tying the ninth-fastest time in BYU history. The sophomore followed that performance up with a career-best 21.51 to take first in the men’s 200m.
All-American Conner Mantz raced in his first collegiate track and field meet since 2019 after not appearing during the shortened 2020 season. He showed no signs of rust in his first race back, finishing with an NCAA-leading 7:58.03 to win the men’s 3000m.
Zach McWhorter took first in the men’s pole vault, clearing 5.55m/18-2.5 in his season debut. The sophomore All-American’s mark is currently the best across the NCAA at this point in the early season.
All-Americans Colten Yardley and Michael Bluth both started their 2021 seasons off strong. Yardley clocked a personal-best 47.60 to take first place in the men’s 400m and Bluth won the men’s 800m (1:53.21).
The Cougars had several freshmen perform well in their first collegiate meets. Hannah Richardson took first in the women’s pole vault (3.90m/12-9.5), Simone Plourde won the women’s 800m (2:10.43), and Meri Dunford took first in the women’s mile (5:15.00).
BYU track and field had four other athletes move up the program’s top-10 list during the first two days of competition.
Sierra Freeland tossed the sixth-best shot put in school history (15.51m/50-10.75) and Halley Folsom Walker finished with the 10th-best pentathlon point total (3,821 points). In the men’s heptathlon, Caleb Witsken finished with 5,423 points and Dallin Vorkink totaled 5,375 points to rank No. 7 and No. 9 in BYU history, respectively.
A complete recap of the first two days of the BYU Cougar Indoor Invitational can be found here.
The Cougars will head to the Air Force Invite in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The three-day meet is scheduled to take place Jan. 21-23, in the Cadet Field House.
Cougars to Open 2021 Indoor Track & Field Season at Home
PROVO, Utah – BYU track and field will host the BYU Cougar Indoor Invitational at the Smith Fieldhouse Jan. 14-16, to open the 2021 indoor season.
- January 14-16
- Smith Fieldhouse - Provo, Utah
- Teams: BYU, SUU, UVU, Weber State, Westminster
- Meet Schedule
- Live Stats
- Live Streams: Instagram
- Team Updates: Twitter
- Closed to the general public
The Cougars return to action for the first time in 10 months after the 2020 indoor and outdoor seasons were both cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, one day prior to the NCAA Indoor T&F Championships.
The three-day meet will feature athletes from five in-state schools: BYU, Southern Utah, Utah Valley, Weber State and Westminster.
Due to COVID-19 protocols, the meet will not be open to the general public. However, team updates will be available on the BYU track and field Twitter and Instagram pages. Live stats will also be available on runnercard.com.
The Cougars ended the shortened season with 11 student-athletes receiving indoor All-America honors from the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association. BYU returns six of the 11 awardees for the 2021 indoor season, including Michael Bluth, Alena Ellsworth, Lauren Ellsworth-Barnes, Zach McWhorter, Matt Owens and Colten Yardley.
With the start date for the 2020 cross country season pushed back to Jan. 23, 2021, the Cougars will participate in what will likely be one of the most unique seasons in college track & field/cross country history, with both indoor and cross country seasons taking place simultaneously.
BYU track and field currently has four meets on its 2021 indoor schedule, including three home meets. The Cougars will continue to add meets to the schedule as the season progresses. The NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships are currently set to take place March 11-13, in Fayetteville, Arkansas.