Two individual titles, DMR victory headlines day one at MPSF Championship
SPOKANE, Wash. – BYU men’s track and field completed day one of two in the school’s final conference championships as part of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation as Nathan Burnett, Zach Erikson and the distance medley relay team claimed conference titles in their respective events Friday.
Burnett’s MPSF pole vault title marked the second consecutive year a BYU athlete has won the award joining Zach McWhorter. Burnett posted a clearance of 5.20m/17-0.75 and gave the Cougars their first back-to-back indoor pole vault conference winners since 2005 and 2006.
“I am proud of Nathan for winning the men’s competition,” pole vault volunteer assistant coach Rick McWhorter said. “No one works harder than he does.”
Erikson’s 5,000-meter title made him the first-ever BYU athlete to win back-to-back indoor 5000m conference championships with a time of 14:14.12. Erikson is only a sophomore, winning the award last year as a freshman. A razor-thin separation divided the other two competing Cougars as twins Garrett Stanford and Jacob Stanford finished 0.12 and 0.14 seconds behind to finish in second and third.
The distance medley relay team of Brandon Garnica, Jace Jensen, James Corrigan and Luke Grundvig became MPSF champions with a 9:53.05 finish, emphasizing the positive momentum of the event for the program as BYU also took home the award in 2022. Garnica is now a two-time DMR champion, the only returning member from last year’s top-finishing squad.
Danny Bryant broke his year-old personal record in the weight throw by over four feet to post a 18.49m/60-8 mark. The Valencia, California native finished third, just two feet shy of first overall among a field of nine competitors.
Dallin Draper led all Cougars in the 200-meters at fifth with a 21.45 finish as Jared Davis (21.51) tied his personal record and Kyler Haughton (21.80) finished 0.72 seconds ahead of his last personal best.
In the heptathlon, Ben Barton and Dallin Vorkink wrapped up the 60-meter, long jump, shot put and high jump. Barton posted new personal records in the 60m (6.93) and shot put (12.97m/42-6.75) while taking first overall in the 60m and high jump. Vorkink finished atop the shot put, registering a mark of 13.48m/44-2.75 to finish nearly a foot and a half ahead of Cal State Fullerton’s second-place Andrew Aguilar.
The Cougars also had several qualifiers for final events tomorrow, including Treyton Anderson in the 60-meter hurdles, Dallin Draper and Kyler Haughton in the 60m. Draper and Haughton both crossed the line at 6.88 while Jared Davis tied a personal-best of 6.93 seconds.
The USTFCCCA recognized 27 BYU men's track and field athletes with All-Academic honors on July 13.