UW Track Gears Up For Conference Championships

May 10, 2011


MWC Outdoor Championships Central

RunnerSpace video of MWC Championships

After a week off from competition, the Wyoming track and field teams should be fresh for the Mountain West Conference Outdoor Track and Field Championships, which will begin Wednesday in Fort Collins, Colo.

Wyoming head coach Don Yentes sees a lot of potential in his men's team, despite the injuries that have plagued some of his top performers. He's counting on the available athletes to bring home some good performances.

"We're looking for guys to run as fast as they can, throw as far as they can, and jump as far as they can," Yentes said. "It should be exciting. We've got some guys who can really do some damage."

The women's group is a made up of mostly underclassmen, but they have the chance to show their talent this weekend.

"It's a young group, but there's a lot of potential there," Yentes said. "We're hoping they can get in there and see what happens and mix it up. They've got a chance to do some really good things."

Last year
In last year's event, the Cowboys found themselves in fifth place with 96 points while the Cowgirls finished ninth with 28.5 points.

The Cowboys won two individual titles last year, which included Lenyn Leonce in long jump and Kekoa Chavez in the 400-meter hurdles.

How UW stacks up
As of Monday, Afiya Walker had the conference's second-best time in the 400-meter dash (53.08 seconds). Christine Nelson was fifth in the 5,000-meter run (16:31.61) and Diana Long is third in the 400-meter hurdles (1:00.25).

Mario Harris is second in the 100-meter dash (10.46 seconds) and is third in the 200-meter dash (20.94). Brandon Douglass is fifth in the 100-meter hurdles (14.65) and Garrett Zans is sixth in the 3,000-meter steeplechase (9:00.98). Tyler Skinner has the top mark in the high jump (7 feet, ¼ inch), and Lenyn Leonce is second in the long jump (24-5). Joe Riccio is fourth in the hammer throw (190-7).

Last time out
The Cowgirls should have a lot of confidence from their last outing, which was the Front Range Championships on the very same track. The women's team scored 235 points to beat second-place CSU by nearly 80 points.

The Cowboys were third with 127 points, finishing behind Colorado State and Air Force.

The schedule
The action will begin Wednesday with the men's decathlon and the women's heptathlon, which will continue Thursday. The majority of the student-athletes will begin Friday when the rest of the track and field events begin. Action will wrap up Saturday.

For live results for all the events, fans can log on towww.rtspt.com/events/mwc/2011outdoor.