Cougars ready for Air Force Team Challenge
PROVO, Utah — BYU track and field will compete in its first scored meet of the 2019 season at the Air Force Team Challenge at the Cadet Field House on Friday, Jan. 18.
“It’s fun for us to go into a competition knowing that we’re going to compete against some good teams and it’s one of the few meets that we’ll compete in that is scored,” BYU head coach Ed Eyestone said. “I think we’ll do well. We had some really good performances last week and we’ll have some athletes competing for the first time this season.”
The Cougars will compete against the men’s and women’s teams from Air Force Academy, Colorado State and Grand Canyon University. This marks the ninth-straight year BYU has competed at the U.S. Air Force Academy during the indoor track and field season.
Eyestone is excited to see the pole vault event group consisting of Raul Rios, Jameson Shirley and Stephen French back in action. All three cleared at least 16-feet last week with Rios setting a career-best 5.20m/17-0.75.
All-American Clayson Shumway will make his season debut competing in the mile. Shumway finished the 2018 outdoor season earning first-team All-America honors after taking seventh place in the 3000m steeplechase.
A week after clocking the fifth-fastest 60m in BYU history, true-freshman Jaslyn Gardner will be joined by one of the Cougars’ top returning sprinters Haley Rogers in her debut. Rogers ran the squad’s fastest 200m during the 2018 indoor season with a time of 24.60.
Eyestone was impressed with Abram Schaap’s performance at the BYU Indoor Invite as an unattached athlete and is looking forward to seeing him in uniform this Friday. Schaap took second in the 300m (34.02) while also running a 6.99 in the 60m. Freshman Easton Bianchi will compete in uniform and make his BYU debut after clocking a 6.95 in the 60m as an unattached athlete last week.
All-American Andrea Stapleton-Johnson and Jacob Foutz will look to continue their hot starts to the 2019 indoor season. Stapleton-Johnson cleared 1.83m/6-0 in the high jump last week which gives her the third-best clearance in the NCAA Division I so far this season. Foutz has beaten or matched his career best in the weight throw each of the three meets he’s competed in this season and now holds the eighth-best mark in school history (19.52m/64-0.5).
“We’re going to go battle,” Eyestone said. “With the athletes we have, I think that we have a good chance to win the meet on both the men’s and women’s side.”
Follow @byutrackfieldxc on Instagram and @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 goairforcefalcons.com.
The USTFCCCA recognized 27 BYU men's track and field athletes with All-Academic honors on July 13.