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BYU track: men's track heads to Seattle for MPSF Championship

By Mason Porter

For the Deseret News

Published: Thursday, Feb. 21 2013 7:17 p.m. MST

PROVO, Utah -The BYU men's track and field team will compete at the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation championships this week, vying for the conference crown against 11 other schools, including No. 11 Oregon, No. 13 Arizona State and No. 14 Arizona.

"This is the most important meet of the indoor season for us," head coach Mark Robison said. "It's a scored meet, so it's kind of a barometer for us to show us how we match up against some of these Pac-12 schools."

For the 11th year in a row, the University of Washington will host the event at its Dempsey Indoor Facility. Last year, in its first season in the MPSF, BYU finished with 67 points, good for fifth place behind Arizona State (131.5), Stanford (81.5), Oregon (77) and Arizona (70).

"For lots of our guys, this is their last meet of the indoor season," Robison said. "We've got a few athletes that we're pretty sure will qualify for the national meet, but for everyone else, this is kind of their moment to show what they've got against some really good competition."

Jared Ward, Tylor Thatcher, Ryan Waite and Victor Weirich are the BYU athletes who are most likely to earn a spot at the NCAA Indoor Championships. The nation's top 16 athletes in each event will qualify for the national meet, which takes place in Fayetteville, Ark., on March 8 and 9. Ward and Thatcher are currently ranked 10th and 15th, respectively, in the 5,000-meter run. Waite is ranked 11th in the 800 meters and Weirich is all but a lock for the NCAA meet with the third-best pole vault mark in the country.

The MPSF Championship begins at 1 p.m. MST on Friday with the women's weight throw. The men's Distance Medley Relay will be the final event of the day, scheduled for 8:25 p.m. MST. Saturday morning will kick off at 11:30 MST with the men's heptathlon 60-meter hurdles. The meet will conclude with the men's 4 x 400 meter relay at approximately 3:40 p.m. MST on Saturday.

Daily recaps will be posted on the BYU men's track and field schedule page soon after the daily results are available.

Mason Porter is a Sports Information Director for BYU Athletic Communications. Contact him at mretrop@gmail.com.

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