Broken school records highlight dual-meet weekend
AMES, Iowa – All-Americans Clayton Young and Erica Birk-Jarvis broke program records as nine BYU track and field athletes moved up the school record boards at the Iowa State Classic and Texas Tech Shootout on Saturday.
“One of the big reasons we come to the Iowa State Classic is because of the quality of competition in the distance field,” BYU head coach Ed Eyestone said. “We had some amazing performances at both of the meets and I’m proud of how our athletes have been competing.”
Iowa State Classic
Birk-Jarvis broke the all-time record at BYU on her way to winning the women’s 3000m invite at the Iowa State Classic on Friday. Her time of 9:00.69 broke the previous record of 9:04.06 set in 2004 by All-American Michaela Mannova.
“Erica was very impressive and put herself in position to likely qualify for the NCAA Championships,” Eyestone said. “She got a little gapped at one point, but she was strong in the final 800 meters to close things out and break the school record.”
Young took first in the men’s 5000m invite at the Iowa State Classic with a time of 13:34.46 to set the new school record. The senior also ran the fastest times in meet and facility history breaking the previous records by almost three seconds. Current teammate, All-American Rory Linkletter set the previous 5000m school record of 13:41.01 at the Iowa State Classic last season.
All-American Connor McMillan and Conner Mantz moved up BYU’s top 10 record boards in the 5000m as well. McMillan clocked 13:38.63 to move up five spots to No. 2 all-time while Mantz finished with a time of 13:39.27 for the third-best time in school history.
“When you have three guys who break the previous school record, you know it has been an outstanding race,” Eyestone said. “I was very proud with how the guys stepped up and we’ll have to see what happens when it comes to qualifying for the NCAA Championships.”
On Saturday, Talem Franco ran the men's mile in 4:01.16 to record the eighth-fastest time in school history. All-American Matt Owens and Patrick Parker also earned personal bests in the mile with times of 4:01.50 and 4:03.14, respectively.
Lauren Ellsworth-Barnes ran the women's 800m in 2:07.14 to tie current teammate All-American Madey Brooks-Dickson for the ninth-best time in program history. This is the second time this season Ellsworth-Barnes has earned a spot in the school records after running on the record-breaking DMR team at the UW Invite.
All-American Whittni Orton won the women’s mile with a time of 4:39.19 and Anna Camp-Bennett took second with a career-best 4:41.01. Kate Hunter (4:47.44) and Sadie Sargent (4:47.48) both earned personal best times in the women’s mile to place 5-6.
Texas Tech Shootout
Michael Bluth ran a career-best 46.94 in the men’s 400m on Friday to earn a spot on the school record boards with the fourth-best time in BYU history. Bluth competed again on Saturday in the 200m earning a personal-best 21.44.
“We knew that it was only a matter of time before we had a performance like this from Michael,” Eyestone said. “He is going to be one of the key components of our men’s DMR relay team that we’ll be running next week at Notre Dame.”
On Saturday, Jaslyn Gardner earned her second spot on BYU’s top 10 boards after clocking 24.45 in the women’s 200m for the ninth-fastest time. The true freshman ran the No. 5 women’s 60m time in her college debut at the BYU Indoor Invite in early January.
Clark Brown ran a career-best 21.20 in the 200m to move up to No. 8 all-time at BYU. Brown had a strong performance in the 60m final on Friday taking fifth place overall with a time of 6.81.
Jefferson Jarvis had his best indoor performance in the men’s shot put with a mark of 18.06m/59-3. Jacob Foutz improved his personal record in the shot put by almost two meters with a toss of 17.06m/55-9.25.
All-American Andrea Stapleton-Johnson took second in the women’s high jump with a height of 1.82m/5-11.5 and Elise Romney cleared 3.97m/13-0.25 to take fifth in the women’s pole vault.
The Cougars will travel next to compete at Notre Dame’s Alex Wilson Invitational on Saturday, Feb. 16, at the Loftus Sports Center. Broadcast information and live stats will be available on the BYU track and field schedule pages two days prior to the meet.
BYU gears up for this weekend's meets in Texas and Iowa
PROVO, Utah – The BYU track and field teams head to Texas and Iowa to compete in the Texas Tech Shootout and Iowa State Classic this week. Events will begin Friday, Feb. 8 and go through Saturday, Feb. 9.
“Both meets this weekend will have top talent,” BYU head coach Ed Eyestone said. “There’s going to be good competition and chances for improvement. These meets are all about trying to hit national-qualifying marks as well as improving marks for the conference meet cuts that will be made in preparation for MPSF.”
Eyestone is looking forward to another weekend of strong performances from the middle distance and distance runners at the Iowa State Classic after their top-ranking finishes at the University of Washington Invite. Several Cougars will be moved into different events to compete for additional national-qualifying marks.
After earning competitive marks in the 3000m, Connor McMillan, Conner Mantz and Clayton Young will be racing in the 5000m. The Cougars currently hold the ranking as the No. 1 3000m squad in the NCAA. All-American McMillan previously finished in the 3000m with a time of 7:51.55 for the eighth-fastest time in BYU history.
Eyestone is also expecting a strong 5000m race by All-American Rory Linkletter. In the 2018 indoor season, Linkletter received first-team All-America honors after taking sixth-place overall in the 5000m at the NCAA Indoor Championships.
The BYU men’s mile squad is currently ranked No. 2 in the NCAA and Eyestone noted that the Cougars will be striving for a four minute mile this weekend. Eyestone anticipates strong races from Talem Franco, Marcus Dickson, Patrick Parker and Matt Owens. Owens will be joining the mile squad after competing in the 3000m steeplechase during the 2018 outdoor season and taking sixth place at the NCAA Outdoor Championships.
On the women’s side, Eyestone is looking forward to seeing what Erica Birk-Jarvis and Olivia Hoj can do in the 3000m. Previously at the University of Washington Invite, Birk-Jarvis set a school record (10:56.51) in the DMR and Hoj ran the No. 2 3000m time in BYU history (9:11.75). Eyestone expects a competitive race from Whittni Orton in the mile as she looks to improve her time. Orton currently holds the indoor school record in the mile (4:34.88), which she ran at last year’s Iowa State Classic.
The rest of the event groups will travel to Texas to compete in the Texas Tech Shootout at the Sports Performance Center.
“Texas Tech has one of the fastest tracks in the country,” Eyestone said. “The sprinters and jumpers are excited to have the opportunity to go down there and improve on their marks.”
Eyestone expects Andrea Stapleton-Johnson to deliver a strong performance in the high jump after reaching a career-best mark earlier this season and maintaining the NCAA-leading mark of 1.87m/6-1.5.
Jefferson Jarvis and Austin Carter are two throwers that Eyestone anticipates will continue to compete well. At the Dr. Sander Invitational, freshman Carter threw a mark of 16.88m/55-4.5 to beat his personal record by more than a meter and ultimately take seventh. Jarvis previously took first place in the shot put (17.99m/59-0.25) at the Air Force Team Challenge and fifth in the shot put at the Dr. Sander Invitational.
Eyestone is looking forward to what sprinters Michael Bluth and Jaslyn Gardner will bring to the competition this weekend. At the Dr. Sander Invitational, Bluth earned a pair of second-place finishes in the men’s 400m and 200m. After clocking the fifth-fastest 60m in BYU history earlier this season, Gardner finished first in the 60m at the Air Force Team Challenge.
Follow @BYUTFXC on Twitter for team updates from the meet. Live results can be found on the BYU track and field schedule page on the day of the meet. The schedule of events and meet information can be found on texastech.com and cyclones.com.