March 12, 2004
Fayetteville, Ark. - Sophomore Jeremiah Johnsonbecame the first Cowboy to earn All-American honors in a track eventsince 1996 Friday at the 2004 NCAA Indoor Track and FieldChampionships in Fayetteville, Ark. Johnson and five other Universityof Wyoming track and field athletes were in action Friday at theNCAA's, which are being hosted by the University of Arkansas.
Johnson was the lone Cowboy in competition on Friday. He finished14th in the prelim's of the 800 meter run with a time of 1:50.94.Although he did not qualify of the finals, Johnson will earnAll-American honors as he posted the eighth best time by an American.The top eight finisher's along with the top eight Americans earnAll-American honors by the United States Track and Field Association.
Junior Shauna Smith posted the sixth best time of the day in the400 meter dash. Her time of 52.09 places her in the finals, set forSaturday at 5:45 p.m. Smith's time also breaks her previous schooland Mountain West Conference record of 52.11 in the event which sheset last week at the Iowa State Last Chance meet.
Also competing in the 400 meter dash Friday was junior JessicaFox. She finished with the 12th best time of the day, 52.90, but didnot qualify for the finals. Fox also competed in the prelim's of the200 meter dash, finishing 14th on the day with a time of 23.78. Senior Kima Wells competed in prelim's of the women's 60 meterdash on Friday. Wells clocked in at 7.44 to finish 15th overall. Hertime did not qualify for finals competition.
In the women's weight throw, senior Andrea Batt's bestdistanceof 58' 5 3/4" came up short for the finals. Her throw was goodenough for 16th place. Batt will compete Saturday in the women'sshot put.
"This meet is not easy," said UW head track and field coachDonYentes. "Our kids fought hard today against the best competition inthe nation. Jeremiah (Johnson) earned All-American honors today, andhe is just a sophomore. Shauna (Smith) and Jessica (Fox) both rangreat, Shauna just ran a little better in her heat. She will go for anational championship tomorrow."
"Our thrower's have a chance to score some big pointstomorrow,and we are all looking forward to see how our 4x400 realy team willshape up. It is really exciting seeing our kids compete well at thislevel. It speaks volumes for how hard they have worked thisseason."
The 2004 NCAA Track and Field Championships concludes tomorrow inFayetteville, Ark. Saturday's competition will feature four eventswith Wyoming competitors. Juniors Zack Schaefer and Kyle Herl willcompete in the men's weight throw, Batt in the women's shot put,Smith in the finals of the 400 meter dash, along with Fox, Wells,Smith and freshman Amanda Hopper in the women's 4x400 meter relay.