Mantz Clocks World-Leading Time in 5000m, Smashes School Record
SEATTLE – All-American Conner Mantz ran a 13:28.00 in the 5000m, the fastest time in the world this year, to set a new BYU track and field indoor record at the UW Invitational.
Mantz broke the previous BYU record of 13:34.46, set by Clayton Young in 2019, by more than six seconds. All-Americans Casey Clinger and Brandon Garnica both ran sub-13:30 times that would have also broken the record. Clinger finished in 13:28.79 and Garnica completed the race in 13:29.16. All three runners broke the Dempsey Indoor Track Arena facility record of 13:29.94, set by Chris Thompson in 2012.
The three Cougars’ times currently rank 1-3 in the NCAA and the world. Mantz moved up from fourth to No. 1 in the 5000m on the BYU Top 10 board, Clinger made his first appearance on the all-time list in the event at No. 2 and Garnica jumped from 10th to No. 3.
An incredible total of nine Cougars all finished with sub-14:10 times in the event, including Elijah Armstrong (13:59.08), Ethan Cannon (13:59.58), Clayson Shumway (13:59.87), Adam Wood (14:00.18), Easton Allred (14:03.02) and Aidan Troutner (14:10.75).
All-American Courtney Wayment ran an NCAA-leading time of 8:54.90 in the women’s 3000m, the second-fastest time in school history. Finishing just behind Wayment, Olivia Hoj Simister completed the race in 8:56.91 to rank No. 2 in the NCAA and No. 3 on the BYU Top 10 list. Aubrey Frentheway also earned a spot on the all-time board in the 3000m with a time of 9:17.57, the eighth-fastest time in BYU history.
In the women’s mile, Kate Hunter and Simone Plourde both cracked the BYU Top 10 list. Hunter ran a 4:38.90, the seventh-fastest mile in BYU history and in the NCAA this year. Plourde completed the race in 4:39.59 to rank No. 10 all-time at BYU and ninth in the NCAA this season.
Texas Tech Shootout
Easton Bianchi’s performance headlined a group of sprinters and field athletes that competed at the Texas Tech Shootout in Lubbock, Texas. Bianchi clocked a 21.17 in the 200m at the Sports Performance Center, tying the sixth-fastest 200m in BYU history. The junior is now tied for sixth on the BYU Top 10 board in both the 200m and 60m (6.68).
Zach McWhorter continued his strong indoor season with a second-place finish in the pole vault with a clearance of 5.61m/18-5.25. The All-American currently ranks No. 2 in the NCAA after breaking the school record last week with a mark of 5.76m/18-10.75. Caleb Witsken finished fourth in the men’s pole vault with a career-best 5.32m/17-5.25, moving him up to No. 13 in the nation.
Sierra Freeland matched her career best of 15.51m/50-10.75 in the women’s shot put, remaining tied for No. 6 on the BYU Top 10 board. In the women’s 60m final, Jaslyn Gardner placed second with a time of 7.49.
Michael Bluth ran a season-best 46.95 in the men’s 400m final before clocking a 46.22 split in the 4x400m relay. The relay squad, comprised of Bluth, Eli Hazlett, Cortez Ruiz and Colten Yardley, finished with a season-best 3:09.75.
The Cougars will return home to host the BYU Cougar Indoor Invitational III at the Smith Fieldhouse Feb. 18-20.