BYU’s track and field teams overcame adverse weather conditions and advanced a combined seven athletes to the National Championships during the West Regional meet in Austin, Texas that was held Thursday through Saturday.
The men’s team qualified five athletes during the regional including Jared Ward, Tyler Thatcher, Victor Weirich, Ryan Waite and Curtis Carr.
“We had some phenomenal performances,” men’s head coach Mark Robison said. “For the most part, everybody moved up from where they were ranked on the descending order list.”
Jared Ward and Tyler Thatcher ran well to advance in the 10,000 meters with times of 30:01.87 and 30:11.22, respectively.
Lifetime bests were recorded in the 3000 meter steeplechase from Curtis Carr and Steve Flint. Carr finished with a time of 8:41.70, while Flint narrowly missed moving on with his time of 8:46.19.
Ryan Waite’s time of 1:48.55 was good for eighth place in the tight 800 meter race and will make his third appearance in the National Championships.
In the pole vault, a strong performance from Victor Weirich gave the Cougars its fifth and final athlete for nationals.
The women’s team advanced two athletes to the National Championships in Kelsey Brown and Natalie Stewart.
Brown came in to the regional with the fourth fastest time in the West in the 800 meters but had to overcome a tough heat to advance with a time of 2:05.57.
“Kelsey had to run a pretty physical race,” women’s assistant coach Corey Murdock said. “Early on she was boxed in and almost literally had to push her way out.”
Stewart recorded her best time of the year at the right time in the 400 meter semifinals finishing in 52.97 to secure a spot at nationals. Her time is one of the fastest times in school history for that event.
Overall the coaches were very pleased with the efforts of their athletes during the three day meet as many athletes turned in their season or lifetime best marks.