Linkletter wins 10K, six Cougars advance to nationals in day one of NCAA West Prelims


SACRAMENTO, Calif. –  Rory Linkletter won the 10,000m as BYU track and field had six athletes qualify for nationals on the first day of the NCAA West Preliminary Round on Thursday in Sacramento, California.

“I can’t say we were surprised by any of the outstanding performances today,” BYU head coach Ed Eyestone said. “All of those individuals have demonstrated throughout the course of the season what they’re capable of. But it still shows the character and determination they have to come through in high-pressure situations.”

Linkletter finished with a 29:14.29 to take first place and advance to the 2018 NCAA Track and Field Championships in Eugene, Oregon, June 6-9. Connor McMillan (29:14.91) took third, Clayton Young (29:16.08) placed ninth and Conner Mantz (29:16.78) finished 11th giving the Cougars four national qualifiers in the men’s 10,000m.

“When you have four guys running in the 10,000m ranked in the top 12, it adds even more pressure,” Eyestone said. “I’m very proud of how all four of them were able to finish and qualify for nationals.”

Freshman Ashton Riner was the first Cougar of the day to first punch a ticket to the NCAA Track and Field Championships. Riner threw the javelin for 50.21m (164’ 8”) on her opening throw of the meet which was good enough to finish 11th overall.

Andrea Stapleton-Johnson qualified to compete in the high jump at nationals for the second year in a row. She took first place with a clearance of 1.80m (5” 10.75”) and didn’t miss a jump in the meet. Eyestone credits Stapleton-Johnson’s success to her increased confidence and improved skill.

Several Cougars advanced to the quarterfinals of their respective events at regionals putting themselves in position to qualify for the NCAA Championships on Friday or Saturday.

Max Scheible (50.91) and Scott Mecham (51.03) finished in the top three in their respective heats of the 400m hurdles to advance to the quarterfinal on Friday at 7:00 p.m. (PDT). Brenna Porter won her heat in the 400m hurdles with a time of 57.44 to qualify for Friday’s quarterfinal at 7:15 p.m.

Abraham Alvarado (1:49.48) won his heat in the 800m to guarantee his spot in the quarterfinal (Friday at 6:30 p.m.).

Talem Franco placed third in his 1500m heat to earn his spot in the next round with a time of 3:51.96. Whittni Orton (4:21.86) and Anna Camp (4:26.70) finished top-5 in the 1500m to advance to Saturday’s quarterfinal. The men’s 1500m quarterfinal will start on Saturday at 6:00 p.m. and will be followed by the women’s quarterfinal.

“Tomorrow we’re looking forward to having some athletes competing who are ranked very high in their events,” Eyestone said. “I think we’ve got a chance to qualify another handful of athletes for the NCAA Championships.”

The West Preliminaries continue tomorrow as BYU athletes compete in the men’s discus, 800m, 400m hurdles, 200m, and 3000m steeplechase as well as the women’s pole vault, 100m hurdles, 400m hurdles, 200m and 3000m steeplechase.

Competition will continue to be streamed on and live updates will be posted on the BYU track and field team’s Twitter account @BYUTFXC. Heat sheets, the meet schedule and live stats can be found on

Thursday's Results:

Ashton Riner
Javelin50.21m11thFinal in Eugene, OR June 6-9
Payge Cuthbertson
Javelin40.52m42ndDid not qualify (DNQ)
Andrea Stapleton-Johnson
High Jump1.80m1stFinal in Eugene, OR June 6-9
Nicole Lord
High Jump1.75m26thDNQ
Marissa Appiah
High Jump1.70m29thDNQ
Ellyana Long
High Jump1.70m34thDNQ
Brenna Porter
400m hurdles57.442ndQuarterfinal - Fri. 5/25 @ 7:15 p.m. PDT
Madelyn Dickson
Anna Camp
1500m4:26.7030thQuarterfinal - Sat. 5/26 @ 6:45 p.m. PDT
Kate Hunter 
Whittni Orton
1500m4:21.8612thQuarterfinal - Sat. 5/26 @ 6:45 p.m. PDT
Avery Walker 
Claire Seymour
Jacob Foutz
Jake Jarvis
Raul Rios
Pole Vault5.00m27thDNQ
Scott Mecham 400m hurdles51.0313thQuarterfinal - Fri. 5/25 @ 7:00 p.m. PDT
Max Scheible
400m hurdles50.9110thQuarterfinal - Fri. 5/25 @ 7:00 p.m. PDT
Colten Yardley400m hurdles52.8339thDNQ
Patrick Parker
Talem Franco 
1500m3:51.9625thQuarterfinal - Sat. 5/26 @ 6:30 p.m. PDT
Marcus Dickson
Clark Brown

Derek Sorensen
Abraham Alvarado
800m1:49.485thQuarterfinal - Fri. 5/25 @ 6:30 p.m.
Connor McMillan
10000m29:14.913rdFinal in Eugene, OR June 6-9
Clayton Young
10000m29:16.089thFinal in Eugene, OR June 6-9
Rory Linkletter
10000m29:14.291stFinal in Eugene, OR June 6-9
Conner Mantz
10000m29:16.7811thFinal in Eugene, OR June 6-9
Dallin Farnsworth
Connor Weaver
Michael Ottesen
Brayden McLelland