UW Track and Field Athletes Rank High Heading into NCAA Championships

June 8, 2004

LARAMIE, Wyo. -

Five University of Wyoming track and field athletes are scheduled to compete at the 2004 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, June 9-12 in Austin, Tex. Cowgirls Jessica Fox and Shauna Smith and the 4x100 and 4x400 meter relay teams along with Cowboy Zack Scheafer will represent Wyoming looking to earn All-American honors and a chance to compete at the U.S. Olympic Trials.

Fox, a junior from Burns, Wyo., is looking to garner All-American honors in the 400 meter dash for the second consecutive season. She currently ranks 21st in the nation with a time of 52.65. At the 2003 NCAA', Fox finished 11th in the event to become the first All-American sprinter in Cowgirl history. She qualified for the NCAA's by finishing fifth in the event at the NCAA Midwest Regional with a time of 52.65.

A native of Sheridan, Wyo., Smith is also seeking All-American status for the second consecutive season. She heads into the NCAA's with the seventh best time in the nation in the 400 meter hurdles, 56.73 - a UW school record. Last season, Smith placed seventh in the event, becoming UW's first hurdler to earn All-American honors. Smith took second place in the 400 meter hurdles at last week's NCAA Midwest Regional (56.73).

For the first time in program history a relay team from UW will compete at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. Wyoming sends two teams in its bid for its first All-American relay team. The 4x100 meter team of freshman Amanda Hopper, senior Kima Wells, Fox and Smith rank 21st in the country with a school record time of 44.63. The 4x400 meter relay squad, consisting of the same four Cowgirls, currently owns the seventh best time in the country with a Mountain West Conference and UW record time of 3:33.01. Texas owns the top time (3:23.75) followed by LSU (3:27.04) and South Carolina (3:28.88).

Zack Schaefer is the lone Cowboy to earn a trip to the NCAA Outdoor Championships. A junior from Battle Ground, Wash., Schaefer owns the ninth best throw in the nation with a distance of 213' 10". The mark is the fourth best distance in Cowboy history. He looks to be the first Cowboy to earn All-American honors in the hammer throw since Jason Hammond (2001).

Competition begins Wednesday, June 9 at Mike A. Myers Stadium on the campus of the University of Texas in Austin. CBS will broadcast the 2004 NCAA Outdoor Championships, June 19th at 2 p.m., MT.