Stanford Invite Leads to Region Qualifiers
SACRAMENTO -- Competing against more than 4,200 other athletes, the Cougars came out on top this weekend at the Stanford Track and Field Invitational held on the future site of the 2004 US Olympic Trials in Sacramento, Calif.
More than ten BYU athletes qualified to advance to NCAA regional competition.
"I think that the teams did fair," women's head coach Craig Poole said. "I can tell you that we had several women qualify for regionals today. At the meet we are expected to improve, and that is what the women did today."
Shining in the sunlight were triple jumpers Kamila Rywelska (13.10m) and Lindsey Sommer (12.30m) who both passed the 12.26m regional qualifying marks to head to regional competition. Freshman Amy Menlove placed first in the hurdles and tied for the win in the long jump to earn regional qualifying marks.
Women's field event coach, Dick Legas, said all of the girls did improve beginning with Anna-lee Walcott in the high jump and the hurdler team.
Top performers on the distance squad were Laura Turner in the 10,000-meter who placed fourth overall with a time of 33:43.27, freshman Julie Cameron who won her race in the 15,000-meter clocking the fastest time in the conference and setting a new personal record by about 15 seconds and freshman Ruth Graham who placed 10th in the 5,000-meters in 16:32.96.
"We got out what we wanted to get out of this meet," women's distance coach Patrick Shane said. "When the smoke clears from this weekend Laura will lead with one of the top times in the nation."
Nationally, Turner's run qualifies her for the NCAA Championships and Cameron's time in the 15,000-meter is probably one of the fastest times ever ran by a freshman at BYU.
"All-in-all we did well. We are moving forward and look forward to next weekends meet," Coach Poole said.
Similar feeling were voiced by men's head track coach Mark Robison who said that the team did pretty good against some of the best competition in the nation.
Top spots on the men's side were occupied by the 3,000m steeplechase team who all passed regional marks. The squad was led by Josh McAdams who took 6th in 8:51.23.
Junior Kansas Whitear took third overall in the 400m-hurldes was a time of 52.72. Following closely behind him was sophomore Ben Gardner in 53.26 who took ninth in 53.26.
Top shot putter in the indoor season, freshman Nik Arrhenius took up the discus throwing 59.56m to take third while his older brother Dan took 6th in 52.75. Both athletes qualified for regionals.
Other outstanding performances today were from junior Nathan Robison in the 1,500-meters who took 5th against Jefferson the Indoor National Champion, the 800-meter duo of Scott Adams and Chad Simkins who both qualified for regionals and pole vaulter Trent Powell who took fourth overall to qualify for regionals with a vault of 17-04.58 (5.30m).
"We are now going to gear up for the next three weeks," Coach Robison said. "The next three weeks are all very good competition."
The Cougars split for meets next weekend with 26 team members heading to the Texas Relays and the rest will host the BYU track and field team's first home meet at the BYU Outdoor Track on Friday, April 2.
Complete results can be found at http://www.sml1.com/recordtiming//stanford_invite04/.
Track Takes on Nations Top at Olympic Complex
PROVO -- After competing in California last weekend, the Cougars will head back there this Friday and Saturday to compete at the Stanford Invitational in Sacramento, Calif. This weekend's competition will be on the site of the 2004 US Olympic Trails Track and Field Complex.
"First and foremost, this venue site will give the athletes the opportunity to get used to the track and field if they are going to be competing in the Olympic Trials later this summer," women's head coach Craig Poole said.
The Cougars will face head-to-head with over 40 top teams in the nation in hopes of earning more regional qualifying marks.
"We really have no idea what the competition will be like," Poole said. "However, we will be a little more serious about our competition this weekend. It is definitely tougher than last week and so we will have much different results."
The women look to make better marks specifically in the high hurdles and the pole vault. On the men's side, the distance squad will open their season at this meet.
"Stanford is the first real quality distance opportunity the team will have," men's distance coach Ed Eyestone said. "Friday's distance events will produce some of the fastest times in the country."
A few standouts will be junior Nathan Robison who after placing second in the mile at Indoor Nationals two weeks ago, will look to face the champion in Saturday's mile race and the team of 3,000m Steeplechasers Matt Adams, Josh McAdams and Rich Evanson. In addition, Lars Kjerengtroen, traditionally an 800-meter runner will step up for this weekends competition to run the 1,500-meter.
"Overall we hope we will do well," men's head coach Mark Robison said. "The reason we go to this meet is because of our regional competition. It will give us an idea of how we will stack up in the regional competition."
Additional men to watch are the pole vaulters Powell and Pratt, Chad Simkins in the 10,000-meter and several of the 800-meter runners.
"There are a lot of guys who didn't compete last week but who will compete this week," Robison said. "Above all, the competition will be some of the best we face until nationals."