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UVU track: Wolverine track set for WAC Indoor Championships

By James Warnick

For the Deseret News

Published: Tuesday, Feb. 25 2014 8:30 p.m. MST

The Utah Valley University men's and women's track and field teams will head to Moscow, Idaho, this week for their first-ever WAC Indoor Championships. The championship meet will run Wednesday through Friday at Idaho's Kibbie Dome.

Just months after the men's cross-country team won UVU's inaugural WAC title at the WAC Cross Country Championships in Seattle, the Wolverine men and women will look to pick up their first conference track and field titles this week.

The meet will begin Wednesday with the men's heptathlon and the women's pentathlon. The pentathlon will kick things off at noon on Wednesday with the running of the 60-meter hurdles. The heptathlon will then carry over to Thursday morning and will conclude with the 1000m run at 1:45 p.m. The field events as well as mainly preliminary running events will also be held Thursday with the men's weight throw getting things going at 1 p.m. The third and final day of the meet will then consist of more field events as well as final running events. Friday's championship day will begin at 10:30 a.m. with the women's weight throw and will conclude with the men's 4x400m relay at 3:45 p.m.

The Utah Valley men and women will each have 25 athletes apiece competing for their respective squad. Junior Michael McPherson highlights the men's team as he leads the WAC in the 60m (6.88), the long jump (7.40m) and the heptathlon (5,535 points). McPherson also ranks 11th nationally in the heptathlon and was named the WAC Field Athlete of the Week on Tuesday after his stellar showing at the USATF Indoor Championships last weekend. The junior from Parker, Colo., set two school records in the heptathlon as well as four personal bests in the event.

Sophomores Cole Eisenhour and Jason Lynch as well as junior Nicholas Taylor and freshman Ryle Williams will also enter the meet in first place in the conference in the 60m hurdles (8.13), 5000m (14:46.73), the 200m (21.47) and the high jump (2.10m), respectively, for the UVU men.

On the women's side, sophomore Ashli Schulz leads the WAC in the pentathlon (3,196), while freshman Mindy Stapel ranks second in the high jump (1.60m).

During their five seasons of competition in Great West Conference, the Wolverine men and women ran the table at the outdoor championships by winning all 10 titles. On the indoor side of things, the UVU men and women each won one title apiece as they both took home the GWC Indoor Championships in 2012.

At the WAC Championships, Utah Valley will be looking to qualify as many athletes as it can for the NCAA Indoor Championships that will take place on March 14-15 in Albuquerque, N.M.

James Warnick is an assistant sports information director at Utah Valley University. For more information about Wolverine athletics, visit www.WolverineGreen.com.

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