James Wins Another Title in Final Day of MWC Championships

May 16, 2009

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During the final day of the Outdoor Mountain West Conference Track and Field Championships, University of Wyoming sophomore Jeremiah James claimed his second title of the weekend in the men's triple jump. In the team scoring the UW men and women struggled as they finished sixth and ninth respectively at the Louis S. Madrid Sports Complex on the UW campus.

BYU captured the team title with 214 points while TCU (139), New Mexico (135) and Air Force (124) battled it out for second, third and fourth respectively. Colorado State finished the four-day championship in fifth-place with a total of 110 points and Wyoming totaled 84 points.

On the women's side, BYU also won the title with a total of 190 points. TCU finished second with 125 points and were followed by Colorado State (95.5), San Diego State (87.5), Utah (76), New Mexico (75.5), Air Force (62), UNLV (53) and Wyoming (84).

"We had a few mental mistakes and a few slip ups and when you need every point available it really cost us," said UW head coach Don Yentes. "Our last race really puts the strength of the conference in perspective when we run the fourth-best time in school history and regionally qualify and we place fourth, it really says a lot to how good this conference is."

James needed only one attempt in the triple jump to secure his sixth career MWC Championship. His leap of 50' 9.25" was his personal best and fifth best in Wyoming history.

The Cowboys and Cowgirls have now qualified 14 members to the regional meet, seven for the Cowgirls and seven for the Cowboys.

"We have the most qualifiers in school history and I am really proud of how the kids stepped up and performed this year," said Yentes.

For the men, junior Kekoa Chavez finished the 400-meter hurdles in seventh with a time of 52.77, while junior John Alderson followed James in the triple jump with his own fourth place finish. Senior Sam Lambert and freshman Henry Ferreira had dual sixth place finishes in the shot put and javelin throw respectively.

In the 100-meter hurdles, senior Shaylee Babbitt finished second and junior Jennifer Schmitz finished seventh with their times of 13.52 and 13.84, both regional qualifying times. Babbitt moved into the third best time slot while Schmitz ran the sixth fastest time in UW history. Sophomore Afiya Walker and senior Sharon Larrier finished five, six in the 400-meter dash with times of 54.02 and 54.31 respectively; Walker's time was good for fifth in UW history.

In the high jump junior Johnna Jeffries crossed the bar at a height of 5' 7" good for second place, along with sophomore Britney Jackson who finished fourth with the same height. The women's 4x400-meter relay team which consisted of junior Erica Anderson, Walker, freshman Lindsey Simmons, and Larrier ran the fourth fastest time in UW history with a time of 3:38.98, which also qualified them for the regional meet.

"Overall, it was a great weekend and in my opinion one of the best run conference championships ever," said Yentes. "Everyone did a great job of running the meet and it was just spectacular."

The NCAA Regional meet will take place in Norman, Okla., on Friday and Saturday, May 29-30.