May 13, 2005
FORT COLLINS, Colo. -
The University of Wyoming track and field teams completed day one of competition Friday at the Mountain West Conference Championships, in Fort Collins, Colo. Cowboys Kyle Herl and Zack Schaefer, and Cowgirl Michelle Kvernmo earned All-MWC Honors in their respective events.
On the men's side, the Cowboys are currently in fifth place with 30 points, ahead of Utah with 8 points. BYU is in the lead with 112 points, ahead of CSU (72.5), Air Force (53), and New Mexico (33.5).
The Cowboys had a good day with a majority of the field event finals on Friday. Seniors Herl and Schaefer went second and third place in the hammer throw to give the Pokes points early. Herl's best throw measured 208' 7", while Schaefer was close behind with a toss of207' 1". Herl would go on later in the day to score more teampoints in the discus when he finished fifth with a season best throw of 169' 3".
The men's high jump proved to be productive for the Cowboys as well. Junior Tom Hall matched a season best height of 6' 6-3/4"that would prove to be good enough for fourth place. Sophomores Phillip Thomas and Jared Grant would follow Hall in fifth and sixth place. Thomas cleared the same height as Hall, but more missed attempts caused him to fall to fifth, while Grant went 6' 4-3/4".
Other positives for the Cowboys were that four additional athletes made it to the finals in their events. Junior Jeremiah Johnson ran the fastest time in the 800-meters on Friday to clinch a berth into Saturday's finals, while sophomore Dwight Neptune qualified in the 100-meters. Junior Jermaine Kelly earned a spot in the 400-meter finals and freshman Michael Arnwine did the same in the 110-meterhurdles.
With a majority of the finals to be run Saturday, the Cowgirls managed to accumulate 12 team points, just ahead of New Mexico with 10 points. Colorado State ended the day in first with 94 points and was followed by BYU (79), Utah (34), San Diego State (18), and UNLV(14) to complete the rest of the field.
The Cowgirls team points came as a result of some great performances in the 10,000-meters. Of the four Cowgirls competing in the event, they all earned team points. Kvernmo's time of 38:30.24 was not only good enough for third place and All-MWC honors, but also has the potential to put the junior in the top five in UW history after the altitude adjustment. Senior Natalie Kean finished in sixth place with a time of 39:09.77, just ahead of freshman Gretchen Fagley in39:29.62. Junior Emerald Reid rounded out the four with a gutsyeighth place finish and a time of 40:34.46.
The UW women also qualified five athletes for eight different events for the finals on Friday. In the 400-meters, senior Jessica Fox (53.00), sophomore Amanda Hopper (54.39), and freshman Sharon Larrier(55.06) earned the top-three times heading into Saturday's finals.Fox also qualified in the 200-meters with the fastest time of the day of 23.22, while Hopper qualified with a time of 24.53. Senior Shauna Smith earned herself a spot in the finals in both the 400-meter and 100-meter hurdles. Her time of 57.74 in the 400-meter hurdles was the fastest time of the day in the event. Senior Ingvild Carstens will join Smith in the 400-meter hurdles finals due to a season best time of 1:02. 14.
"We are getting better," said UW head coach Don Yentes. "Our men fought hard today and did a great job, while our women in the 10,000-meters had an outstanding effort."
Competition will continue Saturday with the field events starting at 10:30 a.m. and the track finals at 11:30 a.m.