Gardner breaks own school record at BYU December Invite
PROVO, Utah – Jaslyn Gardner and Zach McWhorter each broke their own school records as BYU track and field concluded its indoor home-opener at the Smith Fieldhouse on Friday.
BYU Women's Recap
Jaslyn Gardner broke her own 60m school record of 7.31 with a time of 7.27 Friday. The time sets her apart by nearly two milliseconds. Adaobi Tabugbo (7.54), Taye Raymond (7.71) and Layne Bolli (7.73) each set personal bests in the event.
Tabugbo won the 60m hurdles, setting personal bests in both the heat (8.57) and final (8.49) on her way to a first-place finish. Kate Thomas (9.36) and Mayci Torgerson (9.12) set personal bests in the event as well.
Cierra Tidwell-Alphin won the high jump, setting a personal best mark of 1.81m/5-11.25. The mark also puts her at 10th all-time in BYU history.
Freshman Rebekah Ross showed out in the pole vault, winning it with a mark of 4.0m/13-1.5. With a mark of 3.75m/12-3.75, Lauren Merrill also set a personal best in the event.
BYU Men's Recap
BYU’s two returning All-American pole vaulters dominated the field on Friday, led by McWhorter’s record-setting performance.
McWhorter cleared 5.82m/19-1.25 to seize first place in the men’s pole vault and soar past his own school record set a season ago at the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships (5.80m/19-0.25). McWhorter's record-breaking clearance is tied for No. 8 in NCAA Division I history with Istvan Bagyula of George Mason who did so in 1992.
Caleb Witsken came in second with a mark of 5.45/17-10.5.
While seasoned veterans shined in McWhorter and Witsken, a promising freshman made his debut in the men’s 800m. Austin Klingler, a true freshman from West Jordan, Utah, won the 800m with a time of 1:53.34, just four seconds off the BYU Indoor Top-10 board.
The Cougars’ running success continued on Friday with Elijah Armstrong clocking a time of 4:16.23 to finish first in the men’s mile. Kenneth Rooks came in close behind at 4:21.54 to finish third.
Dallin Vorkink and AJ Beynon completed the men’s heptathlon on Friday, taking first and third, respectively. Vorkink won the 1000m, pole vault, 60H and long jump to win the multi-event with an overall score of 5,263.
BYU track and field has a month to prepare before hosting its second meet on Jan. 13-15 at the Smith Fieldhouse. The USTFCCCA will release its national preseason rankings on Monday, Jan. 10.
BYU Women's Recap
Halley Folsom-Walker highlighted the three Cougars who competed in the pentathlon Thursday, as she set new personal bests in the 800m (2:10.31) and pentathlon (4,036). Her 4,036 points are good for third all-time in BYU history. Mayci Torgerson set a new shot put PR (9.78m/32-1) while Sami Oblad, a recently returned missionary, competed as a pentathlete for the first time in her BYU career.
Gretchen Hoekstre and Leah Thompson led the throwers, setting a new personal best in the shot put (14.58m/47-10) and weight throw (15.51m/50-10.75). Hoektre's mark puts her at ninth all-time in school history.
Hoekstre, Leah Thompson, Sable Lohmeier El-Bakri, Jessica Thompson and Sierra Freeland each competed in the discus throw for the first time in their indoor BYU careers at the meet.
Lia Pili and Jayda Lee both made their freshmen debuts at the meet, competing in the discus throw, weight throw and shot put.
BYU Men's Recap
BYU thrower Danny Bryant set a new personal record in the shot put with a toss of 17.06/55-11.75. Bryant's mark was good for a first place finish in the men's shot put finals. Recently returned missionaries Harrison Gould and Seth Knowlton made their throwing debuts for the Cougars with marks of 15.65 and 13.86. Bryant took third in his first ever collegiate indoor discus throw, with a mark of 48.27.
Through five of seven events, BYU's Dallin Vorkink and AJ Beynon stand at second and third, respectively in the men's heptathlon. Vorkink and Beynon will look to improve their scores in the 60mH and pole vault on Friday.
Track and Field begins indoor season with first home meet
PROVO, Utah -- BYU track and field begins its home indoor season with the BYU December Invite on Thursday and Friday, Dec. 9-10, at the Smith Fieldhouse.
- Thursday events begin at 11:15 a.m. MST
- Long jump, triple jump, shot put, discus throw, weight through, women's pentathlon, men's heptathlon
- Friday events begin at 11 a.m. MST
- Pole vault, high jump, 60m, men's and women's 300m, men's 800m men's and women's 3000m, men's heptathlon
- Attendance: this is a non-ticketed event, however no public seating is available
- Full meet schedule
Thursday's meet marks the first of three indoor competitions the Cougars will host during the 2022 season. The next home meets will be on Jan. 13-15 and Feb. 25-26 at the Smith Fieldhouse.
The Cougars return seven All-Americans in Alena Ellsworth, Lauren Ellsworth-Barnes, Kate Hunter, Claire Seymour, Courtney Wayment, Halley Folsom Walker and Heather Hanson.
Ellsworth and Ellsworth-Barnes were both members of the DMR team that took first at the 2021 Indoor Track & Field National Championships earlier this year with a time of 10:52.96. Hunter, with a time of 4:37.65, placed sixth in the mile, and Seymour placed fifth in the 800m with a time of 2:02.25.
Wayment, a member of BYU's DMR team as well, also took first in the 3000m with a time of 9:01.47. Rounding out the returning All-Americans, Folsom Walker placed 14th in the pentathlon and Hanson took 10th in the mile with a time of 4:48.97.
As a team, the Cougars finished the 2021 indoor season at No. 7 in the USTFCCCA final rankings. Preseason rankings for this season are set to release on Monday, Jan. 10.
BYU's distance runners got an early start to their 2022 season at the Boston University Sharon Colyear-Danville Season Opener last weekend. Most notable was senior Wayment’s school record-breaking performance in the 5000m.
With a time of 15:15.46, Wayment finished in third place, but was the first collegiate athlete to finish. She did so just behind former BYU athlete Whittni Orton, who raced unattached, on her way to the seventh-fastest time in NCAA history.
Wayment’s indoor 5000m time is the fastest all-time at BYU, over seven seconds faster than Orton’s previous school record, set at the same meet in 2019.
Also competing in the 5000m with Wayment were Aubrey Frentheway, who finished 20th with a time of 15:52:11, and McKenna Lee, who clocked in at 16:11.94 for a 31st-place finish. In the 3000m, Lexy Halladay finished in sixth with a time of 9:02.32 while Kate Hunter came in 13th at 9:31.85.
BYU men’s indoor track and field returns three All-Americans in distance runner Lucas Bons and pole vaulters Zach McWhorter and Caleb Witsken.
McWhorter and Witsken received First Team All-America honors with clearances of 5.80m/19-0.25 and 5.50m/18-0.5, respectively, at the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships in Fayetteville, Arkansas in March 2021. McWhorter’s mark at nationals broke the BYU indoor men’s record and was good for national runner-up.
As a team, the Cougars finished the 2021 indoor season tied with Virginia Tech for No. 16 in the USTFCCCA national rankings.
BYU’s distance runners kicked off the 2022 season at the Sharon Colyear-Danville Season Opener at Boston University on Saturday, Dec. 4.
In Boston, Bons and Garrett Marsing set personal records in the men’s 3000m, finishing top-5. Brandon Garnica and Casey Clinger competed in the men’s 5000m and recorded the fourth and sixth-best times in program history, respectively.