May 13 | 07:50 AM
Brigham Young University

Clarence F. Robison Track and Field Complex

1600 N. Canyon Road Provo UT 84604

Joseph Hovey | Posted: 13 May 2023 | Updated: 31 May 2023
Joseph Hovey

Women's track and field locks up two more regional qualifiers at Last Chance Meet

Claire Seymour competes at the 2023 BYU Last Chance Meet.
BYU women's sprinters celebrate at the 2023 BYU Last Chance Meet. Lexy Halladay-Lowry competes at the 2023 BYU Last Chance Meet. Lexy Halladay-Lowry competes at the 2023 BYU Last Chance Meet. Haley Johnston competes at the 2023 BYU Last Chance Meet. Adaobi Tabugbo competes at the 2023 BYU Last Chance Meet.

PROVO, Utah — No. 12 BYU women’s track and field secured two more entries to the NCAA West Preliminary in its final regular season competition at the annual BYU Last Chance Meet at Clarence Robison Track and Field on Saturday.

Jessica Thompson punched her ticket to the regional meet with a personal-best throw of 16.27-meters/53-4.5 in the shot put. Thompson now ranks 27th in the West Region, surpassing Evangelynn Harrris of Arkansas State.

The junior from Plains, Montana also jumped to No. 2 all-time at BYU, tying teammate Gretchen Hoekstre. Only Amy Christiansen Palmer’s 17.71m/58-1.25 (1998) stands in Thompson and Hokestre’s way of a school record.

The women’s 4x400-meter relay squad entered the weekend with a season-best time of 3:39.47, two spots out of regional qualifying position. Meghan Hunter, Marianne Barber, Brilee Pontius and Claire Seymour blew past the previous-best to clock 3:33.85 and punched their ticket to regionals.

"Women's 4x400 came through big time," said BYU sprints coach Kyle Grossarth. "We were hoping they could run a 3:37 just to qualify for regionals, but then they almost broke the school record."

With Saturday’s performance, the 4x400m squad ranks 18th in the West, surpassing Texas A&M’s “B” squad, and clears Penn’s squad for 25th nationally. Hunter, Barber, Pontius and Seymour also came close to cracking the school record of 3:33.30. Seymour, Hunter, Alena Ellsworth and Lauren Ellsworth-Barnes combined to set that record in 2021.

While coming up short of regional qualifying, several other BYU women set personal bests on Saturday.

Freshman javelin thrower Mary DeGraffenried took third with a toss of 44.84m/147-1.25. DeGraffenried improved on her previous-best of 42.74m/140-2 set on March 18 at the Cardinal Classic.

Alissa Fielding and Taylor Rohatinsky each set personal bests in the 800-meters, running 2:07.26 and 2:08.35, respectively. Both Fielding and Rohatinsky won’t qualify for the 800m at the regional but are set to compete there in the 1,500-meters.

"This is the kind of last chance meet that you really want because you see people rise up in each category and do things well," said BYU director of track and field Ed Eyestone. "You want to save the best for last and so I think this sets us up really well going into the first round of the NCAAs." 

Regional entries are set to be finalized in the coming days with competition beginning for the BYU women at Sacramento State’s Hornet Stadium on May 25.