Jessica Fox and Shauna Smith Crowned Champions at MWC Championships
May 14, 2005
FORT COLLINS, Colo. -
Seniors Jessica Fox and Shauna Smith both won event titles Saturday at the Mountain West Conference Championships, in Fort Collins, Colo. Fox won two, in both the 200 and 400-meters, while Smith came out on top in the 400-meter hurdles. 11 total UW athletes placed in the top three in their events to earn All-Conference honors.
"Overall I thought the meet went pretty well," said UW head coach Don Yentes. "I was very pleased with the kid's performances and I thought they represented the program well."
The Cowgirls finished the meet in third place with 92.5 points, behind BYU (218) and Colorado State (171). San Diego State (88), UNLV (66), New Mexico (64.5), Air Force (59), and Utah (58) rounded out the rest of the field.
Fox and Smith had remarkable days for the Cowgirls, just as they have done throughout their careers. Fox's time of 51.72 in the 400-meters not only gave the All-American her second career title in the event, but also broke her old UW school record of 51.92. She also went on to win the 200-meters with a time of 23.25. Smith finally earned the 400-meter hurdle title that had eluded her in her career. The All-American's time of 55.31 was also good enough for a new MWC Championship meet record and currently gives her the fastest time in the nation. Smith also went on to place fifth in the 100-meter hurdles.
However, Fox and Smith were not done there. The two, along with sophomore Amanda Hopper, and freshman Sharon Larrier, went on to set a new MWC Championship meet record in the 4x400-meter relay when they won the event with a time of 3:34.91. The duo also teamed up with Hopper and junior Adewunmi Abudu to finish fourth in the 4x100-meter relay with a time of 46.65.
Sprinters Larrier and Hopper also had a good day in their respective events. Larrier earned All-Conference honors individually when she finished behind Fox in the 400-meters to take second with a personal best time of 53.33. Hopper wound up fifth in the 400-meters with a time of 54.34 and sixth in the 200-meters crossing the line in 24.59
Senior Tanice Barnett earned All-Conference honors for the second consecutive year when she finished third in the 1500-meters. Her time of 4:33.03 qualifies her for the NCAA Regional Meet in two weeks. Senior Ingvild Carstens also found a way to contribute team points with a seventh place finish in the 400-meter hurdles.
In the field events, the Cowgirls were also able to manufacture some team points. With her last jump, of not only the meet, but also her career, senior Courtney Schlegel went a personal best 40' 2" in the triple jump. This distance would be good enough for third place and All-Conference honors. Junior Janine Brathwaite ended up seventh with a jump of 37' 8-1/2". Freshman Kat Doherty scored team points with her performance in the pole vault when she cleared 11' 3-1/2" for an eighth place finish.
On the men's side, the Cowboys ended up fifth with 64 points, ahead of Utah with 33 points. BYU won the meet with 280 points, followed by Air Force (168), Colorado State (150.5), and New Mexico (107.5) to complete the field.
Sophomore Dwight Neptune turned heads at the meet when he finished third in the 100-meters with a time of 10.79. This would be Neptune's first time in his career to earn All-Conference honors. The Pokes' 4x100-meter team, consisting of senior Bret Zowada, sophomores Neptune and Adam Kelly, and freshman Jon Lockhart, also received All-MWC honors when they finished third with a season best time of 41.35.
Junior Jeremiah Johnson came close in the 800-meters to being an All-MWC selection when he finished fourth with a time of 1:51.52. Junior Jermaine Kelly's personal best time of 47.72 in the 400-meters proved to be quick enough for fifth, just one-tenth of a second from third place. Freshman Michael Arnwine and senior Eric Suter would also give the Cowboys points with their seventh and eighth place finishes in the 110-meter hurdles.
As for the field events, the Cowboys would get their third thrower to earn All-MWC honors over the weekend. Sophomore Tyg Long's toss of 54' 8-3/4" in the shot put was enough for third place, while senior Kyle Herl wound up in fifth with a throw of 52' 10-3/4".
Up next for UW track and field will be the NCAA Midwest Regional Meet on May 27-28, Norman, Okla. This meet will only be for the ten UW athletes who met the NCAA Regional qualifying marks during the outdoor season.