PROVO, Utah - Multiple Cougars claimed their spot in the BYU indoor track and field record books after performances that potentially qualified them for nationals.
“We had an amazing meet,” BYU head coach Ed Eyestone said. “We had a lot of performances that should be qualification marks for indoor nationals, so I am pleased with that. Many athletes ran strategic, awesome races, and all in all it was a great meet and sets us up well for our next meet at Iowa State in two weeks.”
Cougar distance runners proved that they haven’t missed a beat since the conclusion of the cross country season as three athletes finished in the top 10 of the 3000 meters.
Clayton Young took fourth place overall with a new personal record of 7:49.76, moving into fourth place in the BYU record books in the indoor 3000 meters. Young now sits behind only current head coach Ed Eyestone, Doug Padilla and Miles Batty. Young’s new time of 7:49.76 will most likely qualify him for February’s NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships.
Behind Young in the 3000 meters on Saturday, finishing in eighth and ninth places with sub-eight-minute times and new personal records were Rory Linkletter in 7:58.81 and Jonathan Harper in 7:59.17. Mitchell Briggs took 15th in 8:08.31 and Daniel Carney finished 20th in 8:12.70.
The women’s distance runners gave an equally impressive performance in the 5000 meters. The Cougars took fifth, sixth and seventh places overall with Olivia Hoj finishing in 16.22.10, Yesenia Silva in 16:25.62 and Laura Young in 16:25.76. Natalie Connolly took 12th place with a time of 16:42.26 and Alice Jensen rounded out the Cougar competitors, finishing 16th overall in 16:56.50.
In his first official race as a BYU trackster, recent transfer Abraham Alvarado took first place overall in the men’s 800 meters. He finished in 1:50.34. Close behind Alvarado was Connor Ross, who took third and finished in 1:50.55. Marcus Dickson finished in 10th place, recording a time of 1:51.42. Ross currently claims seventh place overall in the BYU records for the indoor 800m with a time of 1:49.60.
BYU record-holder Shea Collinsworth finished the 800m in fourth place overall with a time of 2:04.39. She was followed by teammates Madelyn Brooks, who took 16th place (2:11.88), Anna Camp, who took 19th (2:12.92), McKenna Neyman in 30th and Sidney Reilly in 33rd.
Sprinter Tatenda Tsumba had a big weekend for BYU, taking first place overall in the 200 meters with a time of 21.48, with Curtis Brown behind him in seventh place (22.03). Tsumba also placed fourth in the men’s 60 meters with a time of 6.75.
In the women’s 400 meters, Brenna Porter took fifth overall in 56.91, with Lauren Rawlinson claiming ninth in 57.32. Behind Rawlinson was Elsja Mecham who took 21st (58.68) in her first collegiate race, and Kaitlyn Gunnerson who took 23rd (58.85).
On the women’s side, distance runner Kristi Rush improved her personal record and maintained her place in the BYU records for the indoor mile, claiming the ninth spot with a time of 4:44.76. Ashleigh Warmer took tenth place (4:45.60), with Whittni Orton taking 15th (4:48.81) and Rachel Stewart finishing in 19th (4:52.62).
Additionally, the men’s 4x400m team won first place with a time of 3:13.11.
Representing the field events, Zachary Blackham took fourth overall in the men’s high jump with a mark of 2.15m (7’0.50”). Women’s high jumper Andrea Stapleton placed second overall in her event with a mark of 1.75m (5’8.75”). Teammate Margaret Appiah finished right behind Stapleton in third with a 1.70m (5’7.0”) mark.
Men’s weight thrower Jacob Foutz threw 18.01m and took fourth place overall. Sadie Nielsen recorded a new personal record in the weight throw, a mark of 15.44m. Nielsen finished in 18th place overall, just ahead of Siale Vaitohi, who took 21st place with a mark of 15.29.
Tomi Adegoke placed fourth overall in the men’s long jump, finishing with a mark of 7.15. Teammate Rickey Fantroy took 17th place and logged a mark of 6.45m.
The Cougars take a week off from competition before participating next in the Iowa State Classic on Feb. 24-25.