Wyoming Track and Field Heads to MWC Outdoor Championships

May 13, 2008


The University of Wyoming Track and Field team will take to the Mountain West Conference Outdoor Championships starting Wednesday, May 14 and continuing through Saturday, May 17 in Fort Worth, Texas, hosted by TCU.

Competition will begin Wednesday at high noon with the heptathlon and decathlon events. The Pokes are represented by lone decathlete, sophomore Jay Petsch, who currently ranks seventh in the MWC with a total of 5,718 points, accumulated at the Cougar Invite earlier this April.

Thursday, will bring the conclusion to the heptathlon and decathlon and the beginning of the men's hammer throw. Competing in the hammer throw will be freshman Alan John who qualified for the NCAA regional meet with a toss of 190' at the Front Range Invite in Laramie, Wyo., on the third of May.

On Friday, May 16th, the day will begin at 7:30 a.m. as the women's 10,000-meter run will start off the day and end at 5:00 p.m. with the women's hammer throw. Most of the running events that day will be qualifying for the finals to be ran on Saturday beginning at high noon. A complete schedule of the events is available at www.themwc.com.

"We look forward to having some young kids get some experience and exposure on the conference level," said UW head coach Don Yentes. "They have been improving all year and we look for some of them to make some noise this weekend."

The University of Wyoming has eight individuals qualified for the NCAA Midwest Regional Championships so far this season, four for the Cowboys and four for the Cowgirls. The regional meet is scheduled for May 30-31 in Lincoln, Neb.

The top performance this season belongs to senior Kate Burton with her school record holding toss of 209' 8" in the hammer throw. She is followed by fellow senior, Gretchen Johnson who qualified for Regionals at the Stanford Invite earlier this April with time of 16:35.98 in the 5,000-meter run. That time was also good for second best all-time in UW history. Junior thrower Courtney Gougler qualified in the discus with a toss of 166', along with Shaylee Babbitt who qualified in the 100-meter hurdles and leads the MWC this season in her event.

As for the men, they are led by sophomore John Alderson who qualified in the triple jump. He currently sits in second place in the MWC and third place in the long jump. Alderson follows freshman Jeremiah James in the long jump as James has qualified with his leap of 24' 1". James will compete in the long, triple and high jump events this weekend. Along with Alan John in the hammer throw, senior Vashone West qualified in the 100-meter dash with a time of 10.38, good for fourth best in the MWC.

"Kate (Burton) and Gretchen (Johnson) have both been very big parts of this program for the past few years and will be sorely missed and hard to replace," said Yentes.

Live results can be found HERE during each day of the Championships.