Women’s track team to race at hom

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    By DARREN WILCOX

    The BYU women’s track and field team will be at home Friday and Saturday for the Cougar Invitational, their first home meet of the season.

    The women’s track team, currently ranked sixth in the nation by the U.S. Track Coaches Association, is coming off a great performance at the Texas Relays in Austin last weekend. Many of the athletes say they are excited about the chance to race at home.

    “It is nice that we don’t have to travel anywhere [to compete],” said Dixie Williams, a junior hurdler from Fallon, Nevada. Williams will compete in five events and said she is a little nervous to be competing in front of friends and family.

    In the past, this meet has been plagued by bad weather. One year the meet was actually stopped early because of snow.

    “We always have to run in the snow and rain,” said Williams who said the size of the crowd will depend on the weather.

    Tiffany Lott, junior All-American and world record holder in the 55-meter indoor hurdles, agreed that the weather could be a factor.

    “Relatively warm weather will help,” Lott said in reference to the invitational. “Some awesome athletes will be competing, and it will be a great meet.”

    Kristel Berendsen, a BYU All-American triple jumper, said she is excited for the chance to compete at home.

    “All our fans and friends can come and watch,” Berendsen said.

    The Cougar Invitational is not a scored meet, meaning that no team points will be awarded for individual finishes.

    Many Utah colleges will compete at the invitational, including Utah State University, the University of Utah and Weber State University.

    “It’s going to be a lot of fun,” said Becky Jackson, a sophomore from Salt Lake City. Jackson will compete in the pole vault Friday along with teammate Michelle Baxter. It will be the first time the pole vault is entered as a women’s event at the Cougar Invitational, so the winning scores will be archieved as new meet records.

    The invitational is scheduled to begin Friday afternoon at 1:30 with the last event on Friday getting underway at 5 p.m. Saturday, the Cougars will get an early start as the first event begins at 10 a.m. The final event Saturday is scheduled to start at 2:40 p.m.

    The men’s track and field team will also be competing at the invitational. Admission to the meet is free both days.

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