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Run, Wildcats, run: Track and field at Utah Tech invitational

Weber State University Distance runner, TJ Warnick at the UTech Track and Field Invite Day 1. (Stan Plewe/Utah Tech Athletics)

Weber State University’s men’s and women’s track and field recently reached the end of their indoor season. To begin their outdoor season, WSU headed to Southern Utah for the Utah Tech Invitational on March 22 and 23. The other schools who competed in the meet were Southern Utah University, Idaho State University, Utah State University, Westminster College and Utah Valley University.

“The transition is an interesting one to say the least,” Angelyca Chapman, a sprinter for the Wildcats, said. “Towards the end of indoor you can tell we are ready to go outdoors. There is a shift in our overall mood. We are all happier and bright-eyed again. I am feeling good about the team this year. We have a new coach, and I feel like this season will surprise us.”

Track and field events began on March 22. The track events were men’s and women’s steeplechase, 200 meter, 400 meter hurdles and 5,000 meter. For the field events, men’s and women’s discus throw, shot put, long jump and high jump took place.

On the women’s side, Hannah Bailey finished fourth in the steeplechase at a time of 11:12.43, and Kami Withers finished fifth at a time of 11:14.5.

Payge Walz placed second in the 200 meter race with a time of 24.42 seconds. Chapman was just moments after, finishing fourth at 24.95 seconds, and Jasmine Devers finished fifth with a time of 25.00 seconds.

In the 5,000 meter race Trisha Thompson Davis finished third with a time of 17:59.80.

In field events, Dawson Rothenbuhler placed third in shot put with a mark of 45′ 7 3⁄4”, and Shannan Fonua placed fifth with a mark of 41′ 7 3⁄4”.

For the long jump, Walz finished third with a mark of 17 ’9 3/4” and Shelby Johnson finished fifth with a mark of 16’ 5”.

Closing off with the high jump, both Abby Triplett and Aimee Chambers placed third at a mark of 5′ 1 1⁄4″.

In the men’s 200 meter dash Rodee Brow had a time of 21.62 seconds and finished in second. Cody Gehrett finished third in 22.04 seconds, and Tristan Spalding placed fifth at 22.07 seconds.

For the 400 meter hurdles Ben Johansen placed third at a time of 56.61 seconds.

In the 5,000 meter Taylor Knight placed first at a time of 14:31.70, Tanner Rogers placed third at 14:44.20 and Carson Horspool placed fifth at 14:48.55.

The men’s high jump finished the field events for the night, and Kale Thomas took first with a mark of 6’ 4 3/4”.

“Competing at the University level is definitely different,” Chapman said. “It is giving me a chance to challenge myself and grow — not just in my sport but as a person. I have learned a lot of things about myself as I compete in college track and I know that I will keep growing into my full potential.”

On March 23 the events began at 10 a.m. and continued until around 2:20 p.m. The track events were men’s and women’s 4×100 relay, 1,500 meter, 110 meter hurdles, 100 meter hurdles, 800 meter, 100 meter, 400 meter, 3,000 meter and 4×400 relay. The field events were men’s and women’s javelin throw and triple jump.

For the women, Saga Hagelin placed second in the 1,500 meter run with a time of 4:30.78.

Walz finished fourth in the 100 meter hurdles with a time of 13.96 seconds. Walz also placed second in the 100 meter dash with a time of 12.00 seconds and Abby Hancock finished just behind in third with a time of 12.04 seconds.

For the 800 meter, Sandra Aberg placed second with a time of 2:15.47.

Chapman finished in second place in the 400 meter with a time of 55.90 seconds.

In the 3,000 meter, Laurie Murphy finished first with a time of 9:56.10 and France Hudson placed fifth with a time of 10:28.53.

The women’s 4×400 relay consisted of Chapman, Walz, Devers and Eliza Smith. They finished in first at a time of 4:00.85.

In the field events, Alyssa Hansen placed second in the javelin with a mark of 150’10”.

For the men, Gehrett placed second in the 110 meter hurdles with a time of 15.16 seconds and Johansen placed fourth at 15.69 seconds.

In the 100 meter dash Amari Adams finished in second at a time of 10.88 seconds.

For the 400 meter, Orion Barger finished first at a time of 47.04 seconds. Brow finished second at 48.01, Colby Anderson placed fifth with a time of 49.25 seconds.

Weber’s 4×400 relay consisting of Barger, Brow, Anderson and Spalding placed first with a time of 3:17.74.

Records were made at the Utah Tech Invite as well. Cody Canard, a javelin thrower, broke the school record on his third throw, throwing the javelin 232’ 00”. Right after Canard broke the record, Josh Trafny broke it again on his third throw. He threw the javelin 232’ 11”. For Canard’s fourth throw he threw the javelin even further at 256’ 1”, setting the school record once more, a meet record, and the Big Sky All-time record. It was the No. 2 mark in the NCAA this year and qualified Canard for the U.S. Olympic Trials. Canard was named Big Sky’s men’s field athlete of the week. Canard and Trafny sit at No. 1 and 2, respectively, in school history.

“Both have worked so hard for so many years and today was a tremendous payoff,” head coach Corbin Talley said to Weber State Athletics. “Cody and Josh put on a show, and it was something special.”

This week Wildcat athletes will split up and travel to both Orem for the Utah Valley Collegiate Invitational and to Stanford, California, for the Stanford Invitational. The UVU Invitational will take place on March 28 and 29, and the Stanford Invitational on March 29 and 30.

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Jacoba Jones, Sports reporter

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