Wednesday , May 02, 2012 - 3:33 PM
OGDEN -- The Weber State outdoor track and field teams wrap up their 2012 regular season schedule Wednesday, hosting the WSU Twilight Meet at the Chick Hislop Track at Stewart Stadium.
Field events begin at 3 p.m. with the men's hammer throw at the throwing area located on Old Post Road just south of the University Village Living Complex. The first running event, the women's and men's 3,000-meter steeplechase, begins at 4:30 / 4:45 inside the stadium.
Athletes from BYU, Utah, Utah State, Utah Valley, Westminster and Weber State are expected to compete.
There is no admission charge.
Heading into the final regular season meet, coach Jim Blaisdell's women have 22 athletes qualified, in 39 events, for the 2012 Big Sky Conference outdoor track and field championships on May 9-12 in Bozeman, Mont. Blaisdell says it would be nice to get to the max number of 25 this week.
"Each team is allowed 25 athletes maximum to participate in the conference meet," said Blaisdell. "I think we can squeeze three more in on Wednesday, but the main purpose of the meet is to tune up and build momentum for the championship meet next week."
Blaisdell said he will rest his long distance runners this week, and those running in the shorter races will be able to pick and chose where they want to run.
Blaisdell's crew is coming off a solid week of performances at the Cougar Invitational and a meet at Stanford University.
At BYU, Kristin Billings ran a personal best of 11.91 in the 100 meters, bettering her old mark of 12.06. The 11.91 is the sixth fastest time in WSU school history. Amanda Alston ran a career best in the 400 meters (54.50) which ties her for the third best time in WSU school history. Elisa Isakson tied the WSU school record, and jumped a personal best, of 12-0 in the pole vault.
At the Peyton Jordan Invitational at Stanford University last Saturday, Amber Henry continued her upward climb in the 3,000-meter steeplechase. Her time of 9:53.94 is the second best ever in WSU school history and the third best in Big Sky Conference history.
It is only the third time she has run the event. The first time she ran it, back in March, she ran 10:12.00. At the MT. SAC Relays in early April she ran 10:00.17.
For her effort at the Jordan Invitational, Henry was named the Big Sky Conference Female Track Athlete Of The Week. That time also qualifies her for the 2012 USA Olympic Trials in June. It is the third-best time in the nation this season in NCAA Division I.
Coach Dan Walker's men now have 17 athletes qualified in 30 events for the 2012 Big Sky outdoor championship. Walker says he's looking for a "few good men" to come through on Wednesday and push that number higher.
"Our goal before the season was to have 20 athletes qualified in 30 events. We've met the event criteria, now we just need three more break throughs on Wednesday which would give us a solid crew for the conference meet." said Walker.
Walker got some good news last week. Tyler McBee, who missed the 2012 indoor season and most of the 2012 outdoor campaign, was declared eligible last week after completing some academic work.
It didn't take him long to establish himself. At the BYU meet, McBee posted a time of 52.52 in the 400 meter hurdles, which is the fastest time in the Big Sky this season.
McBee also gave the 4x100 meter relay team a boost as well. Running with Chris Struckman, Matt White and Dustin Durfee, the 'Cats ran 41.32 at the BYU meet, which is the second fastest time in the Big Sky this season. He also ran 14.60 in the 110 meter hurdles at the BYU meet. That is the fourth best time in the Big Sky this season.
For all those efforts, McBee was named the Big Sky Conference Male Track Athlete Of The Week.
Walker got another big boost from veteran Chris Struckman who popped a long jump of 23-1.25, qualifying him for the conference meet in that event.
Wednesday night's meet will be the final home meet appearance for nine Wildcat seniors.
Four men who are departing include:
* Chris Burnett (Farmington) was a long distance specialist in track and ran cross country.
* Brett Hales (Ogden). Hales was a distance runner, steeplechase specialist and cross country runner. He completed his outdoor career last year by finishing fifth in the 3,000 meter steeplechase at the NCAA Division I men's outdoor championship.
* Tyler McBee (Beaverton, Ore.). McBee has career best times of 14.33 in the 110 meter hurdles and 51.45 in the 400 meter hurdles. Those times are tied for 7th and 4th best, respectively, on the WSU all-time top 10 list.
* Zach Parry (Taylorsville) has excelled in the 35-pound weight throw, hammer throw and shot put. He has the school's third best effort in the hammer throw (198-09.00) and the third best mark in the 35-pound weight throw (61-00.00).
On the women's side:
* Kristin Billings (Kaysville) will go down as one of the best short sprinters in school history. Outdoors, she has career bests of 11.91 in the 100 meters and 24.37 in the 200. Those are the 6th and 9th best times, respectively, in WSU school history. Indoors, her time of 24.44 in the 200 meters, and 7.50 in the 60 meters, are both the 2nd best times posted in WSU school history.
* Jessica Carter Roses (Roy) completed her outdoor career in 2011 and was a solid performer in the middle distance races.
* Audrey Smith (Mona) has been a multi-event performer, running in the 100, 200 and 400 meters, plus long jumping. Last week she ran a career best of 12.07 in the 100 meters, ran a career best 24.95 in the 200 meters on April 13 and a career best of 56.95 in the 400 meters on April 14. Also on April 13, the jumped a career best of 17-11.75 in the long jump.
* Loren Storey (Kaysville) has been a steady runner in cross country and in the long distances during her four year career.
* Dottie Vea (Sandy) has blossomed this season. On April 21 she uncorked a career best of 171-03.00 in the hammer throw, the 3rd best mark in WSU school history. During the 2012 indoor season, she had a career best of 53-01.50 in the 20-pound weight throw. That is the 2nd best mark in WSU school history
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