Rooks clocks top-3 steeplechase time at Oregon Twilight


EUGENE, Ore — No. 8/13 BYU track and field compiled 11 event wins at the Oregon Twilight at Hayward Field on Friday night, highlighted by a Top-10 performance from steeplechaser Kenneth Rooks. 


Men’s Recap
Kenneth Rooks clocked a winning time of 8:31.19 in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, coming in nearly nine seconds ahead of runner-up Riley Osen of Portland. Rooks is now No. 3 all-time at BYU in the steeplechase, having surpassed teammate Garrett Marsing’s 2021 time for the spot. The sophomore from Walla Walla, Wash. was ranked No. 6 nationally in the steeplechase prior to Friday’s race and now surpasses Parker Stokes of Georgetown for fourth. Rooks is less than a year removed from full-time missionary service for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Zach Erikson took fourth in the steeplechase, setting a personal record by 16 seconds.

Michael Whittaker, Dallin Shurts and Caleb Witsken joined Rooks with event wins.

Whittaker threw a personal-best 68.74m/225-6 in the javelin, over five feet ahead of Asher Krauel of host and No. 7 Oregon. Dallin Shurts won the discus throw with a mark of 59.04m/193-8 and Caleb Witsken took the pole vault with a clearance of 5.11m/16-9.25.

Joey Nokes and McKay Johns both set personal bests in the 5000-meters at third and seventh places, respectively. Nokes crossed the finish at 13:55.54, joining winner Jacob Klemz of Portland and runner-up Yaseen Abdalla of No. 1 Texas, in surpassing the previous meet record of 14:08.89.

Women’s Recap
The Cougars recorded seven event wins on the day, beginning with freshman Cailee Faulkner, whose clearance of 3.66m/12-00 in the pole vault was good for first place. 

Halley Folsom Walker won both the 100-meter hurdles (14.04) and the 400-meter hurdles (59.11). Alena Ellsworth then took first in the 400-meters, clocking a 54.38.

Kate Hunter’s new personal best of 2:06.72 earned her a first-place finish in the 800-meters, and Cierra Tidwell-Allphin won the high jump with a mark of 1.76m/5-9.25. Ashton Riner concluded the night for BYU, finishing first in the javelin with a throw of 58.51m/191-11.

Courtney Wayment and Aubrey Frentheway competed for the Cougars in the 5000m at the Sound Running Track Meet in California. Wayment finished 20th overall with a time of 15:50.20, and Frentheway’s 16:03.25 placed her 12th in Section 2 of the event.

The Cougars return home to host their second and final home meet next week, the BYU Last Chance Meet, on Friday and Saturday, May 13-14.