UVU track: Wolverines open outdoor season at UNLV this weekend

By James Warnick

For the Deseret News

Published: Thursday, March 6 2014 4:31 p.m. MST

Just one week after competing at the 2014 WAC Indoor Championships, the Utah Valley University men's and women's track and field teams head to Las Vegas, Nev., to open their outdoor seasons. The UNLV Track Classic will be held Friday and Saturday at the Myron Partridge Stadium and Sheila Tarr-Smith Field.

The opening outdoor meet of the season begins Friday at 3:00 p.m. PT. The women's javelin, women's pole vault and women's 3000-meter run will kick off the meet. On Saturday, the Classic begins at 10:00 a.m. with the women's hammer throw. The 4x100m relay will then mark the first running event of day number two at noon, and the Classic is set to conclude at 2:30 p.m. with the 4x400m relay.

Just last week in Moscow, Idaho, the UVU men took third at their first-ever WAC Indoor Championship while the women placed fourth. The men came in third with 113 points, while host Idaho won the men's side with 173 points and Grand Canyon took second with 172. On the women's side, GCU won the field with 166.50 points, while Kansas City placed second with 144.50, Idaho third (127) and UVU fourth (80).

Individually, junior Nicholas Taylor led the men's squad by winning the 60m dash (6.84) and taking second in the 200 (21.57). Freshman Ryle Williams also had a big meet by winning the high jump as well as setting a school record in the process by clearing 6 feet 11 inches (2.11m). The relay squad of senior Chris Dorton, junior Trevor Sharp, sophomore Gary Hatch and freshman Kyler Sprague also took home the distance medley relay title with a time of 10:20.29. Senior distance runner Macy Butterfield placed third in the 5000m run (15:15.52), while fellow senior Michael Ashton took third in the pole vault (4.70m).

On the women's side, senior Ali Shields (3,224 points), sophomores Ashli Schulz (3,094) and Gately Garnett (3,094), and freshman Mindy Stapel (3,020) took second through fifth, respectively, in the pentathlon. Junior distance runner Ivie Gonsalves also had a strong showing as she finished second in the 3000m run (10:02.35), while sophomore Samantha Sweet placed third in the 400m dash (56.58). The tandem of sophomores Shaelee Sweatfield, Celeste Gutzman and Schulz along with freshman Caity Beddes placed third in the distance medley relay with a time of 12:28.31.

After the Classic, the Wolverines travel to Southern California the following weekend to take part at Cal State Fullerton's Ben Brown Invitational and Occidental College's Oxy Distance Carnival. UVU then hosts its lone home meet of the regular season on March 28.

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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