2015 Mountain West Indoor Track & Field Championships Begin Thursday

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The 2015 Mountain West Indoor Track & Field Championships begin Thursday, Feb. 26 at the Albuquerque Convention Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and are hosted by the University of New Mexico.

Real-time scoring and results, along with post-race interviews, event highlights and photo galleries from the 2015 MW Outdoor Track & Field Championships, which runs through Saturday, Feb. 28, are available on the Championship Central page of TheMW.com at http://www.themw.com/#!/page/chamhttp://www.themw.com/#!/page/championship_c-itrackpionship_c-itrack. In addition, Friday and Saturday’s track events will be broadcast live on the Mountain West Network. Fans can watch those events at http://www.themw.com/#!/watch-live.

New Mexico is the defending champion on the both the men’s and women’s side. A total of 17 teams (six men, 11 women), will compete in the meet.

The reigning Performer of the Meet for both the men and women, Utah State’s Nic Bowens and Chari Hawkins, return to the track in 2015. Bowens set a MW all-time and Championship record last year in the 60 Meters with a time of 6.61, while his winning 200 Meters time of 21.11 was the fifth-fastest in Championship history. Hawkins claimed the Pentathlon title with 4,173 points and also took second in the 60 Hurdles (8.44) and High Jump (5’-8.50’’).

The host Lobos have carved a few names into the Conference’s record books this season, as two all-time records were smashed. Senior Django Lovett cleared 7’-3.00’’ in the High Jump, while on the women’s side, Sammy Silva set a new mark in the Mile with a time of 4:33.48. Both records were set at the New Mexico-hosted Don Kirby Elite Invitational on Feb. 13-14.

Air Force’s Joey Uhle, winner of the Pole Vault at the 2013 and 2014 MW Indoor Track & Field Championships, cleared 18’-2.50’’ at the 25th Air Force Invitational on Jan. 22, 2015 in Colorado Springs, Colorado, good for the second-best all-time mark in the Mountain West.

Men’s Event Notes
60 Meters: Bowens, a senior, is the defending champion, but New Mexico junior Ridge Jones enters the Championship with the top time in the Conference this season at 6.67. Bowens is second at 6.70 and Utah State junior Parker Bluth is third at 6.78.

200 Meters: Bowens will enter the meet with the league’s fastest regular-season time at 21.06. He is the reigning champion at 200 Meters. Bluth (21.22) and Jones (21.43) aren’t far behind.

400 Meters: Last year’s winner, junior Cole Lambourne of Utah State, possesses the top time in the MW this season at 48.06. Bluth is second (47.50), followed by another Utah State sprinter, freshman Clay Lambourne (47.95).

800 Meters: Clay Lambourne also leads in the 800 Meters entering the 2015 MW Championships. His time of 1:50.64 is a half-second ahead of another freshman, Wyoming’s Ricky Faure (1:51.14). Cowboy senior Thomas Atkinson ranks third at 1:51.29.

Mile: New Mexico sophomore Elmar Engholm paces the group with a time of 3:57.95, followed by last year’s winner of the event, Utah State senior Eric Shellhorn, who has posted a 3:59.13. Sophomore Matt Dorsey of Air Force has the third-fastest time in the event at 4:01.37.

3000 Meters: Lobo senior Adam Bitchell’s 7:53.27 stands as the top time in the event this season, followed by Air Force junior Patrick Corona (7:55.01) and Colorado State sophomore Jefferson Abbey (8:04.76).

5000 Meters: Bitchell leads in this distance race, too, with a time of 13:50.05. Boise State senior David Elliott and Colorado State senior Ben Larson are second and third with times of 13:57.27 and 13:58.85, respectively.

60 Hurdles: Jordan Charles, a sophomore from Wyoming, leads the pack with a 7.95, followed by senior teammate Colin Herold (8.13) and Air Force freshman Jamiel Trimble (8.20).

4x400 Relay and Distance Medley Relay: Utah State owns the fastest time in the 4x400 at 3:09.43, while Boise State holds the Distance Medley Relay lead at 10:10.43.

High Jump: Following Lovett in the Conference rankings is Air Force sophomore Taylor Smith with a 7’-1.50’’ clearance and Colorado State sophomore Collin Scheer, who checks in at 7’-0.25’’.

Pole Vault: Uhle’s teammate, junior Dylan Bell of Air Force, has also cleared the 18-foot barrier this season. Bell’s top vault is an 18’-0.50’’. Another Falcon vaulter, sophomore Kyle Pater, ranks third in the MW at 17’-0.75’’.

Long Jump: New Mexico junior Allan Hamilton leads the way entering the 2015 MW Championships with a leap of 25’-2.75’’. Fellow Lobo, junior Yannick Roggatz, ranks second at 24’-4.25’’ and Colorado State senior Justin Green is third at 23’-8.00’’.

Triple Jump: Warrick Campbell of New Mexico is the defending champion and the senior will enter the 2015 MW Championships with the top mark in the Conference at 51’-5.00’’. Air Force sophomore John Reynolds (49’-2.25’’) and Colorado State senior Jonathan Edmunds (48’-10.75’’) are second and third, respectively.

Shot Put: Air Force junior Grant Hamilton, second in the event at the 2014 MW Championships, currently leads the Conference with a mark of 59’-5.50’’. Air Force sophomore Darby Maier is second (58’-9.50’’) and Colorado State junior Tyler Schultz ranks third (58’-6.75’’).

Weight Throw: Tyler Anderson, a junior from Wyoming, leads the group of MW competitors with a throw of 65’-11.00’’. Colorado State senior Jake Schneeberger (65’-3.50’’) is second and Schultz (61’-6.75’’) ranks third.

Heptathlon: Colorado State senior Justin Green looks to defend his title in the multi-event competiton. Green’s 5,380 points is currently the top point total in the Conference, followed by teammates Josh Cogdill (junior; 5,188) and Hunter Price (sophomore; 5,015).

Women’s Event Notes
60 Meters: UNLV freshman Destiny Smith-Barnett enters the 2015 MW Championships with the league’s top time at 7.43, followed by Colorado State sophomores Emily Romo (7.51) and Lorenda Holston (7.53).

200 Meters: Romo possesses the top mark at 24.20, with Boise State senior Megan Kelley in second (24.22) and Colorado State sophomore Leah Fair ranking third (24.39).

400 Meters: Kelley leads the field (55.27), trailed by Nevada freshman Katherine Surin (55.41) and Wyoming senior Erin Kirby (55.71).

800 Meters: In addition to leading the Mile, Silva also holds the top time in the 800 Meters this season, clocking in at 2:08.14. New Mexico junior Sophie Connor ranks second (2:08.20) and San Diego State freshman Ellison Grove is third (2:10.86).

Mile: Silva’s all-time mark of 4:33.48 leads the way, followed by Lobo senior teammates Tamara Armoush (4:45.69) and Nicole Roberts (4:50.27).

3000 Meters: Another Lobo, sophomore Calli Thackery, controls the top time in the MW this season at 9:07.31. That’s nearly 20 seconds ahead of freshman teammate Alice Wright (9:26.42). Boise State freshman Emma Hyyppa ranks third at 9:27.69.

5000 Meters: Boise State junior Marisa Howard leads Wright and 2014 MW Champion Holly Page, a senior from Wyoming. Howard’s time is 16:07.90, while Wright clocks in at 16:09.38 and Page at 16:20.10.

60 Hurdles: San Diego State sophomore Micha Auzenne and New Mexico junior Holly VanGrinsven have each posted an 8.37 this season, followed by Utah State’s Hawkins at 8.41.

4x400 Relay and Distance Medley Relay: UNLV claims the top time in the 4x400 Relay at 3:42.45, while New Mexico leads the Distance Medley Relay field at 11:01.44.

High Jump: Jazmyn Webster, a senior from Colorado State, enters the 2015 MW Championships with the top clearance this season at 6’-0.00’’. Hawkins is second at 5’-10.50’’ and Boise State sophomore Jordan Ward is third at 5’-8.75’’.

Pole Vault: San Diego State holds down the top two positions, with freshman Bonnie Draxler leading the way at 13’-8.25’’, followed by Karen Snapper at 13’-2.25’’. New Mexico junior Annie Stirling has also cleared 13’-2.25’’ this season.

Long Jump: New Mexico junior Aasha Marler, the 2014 champion and Fresno State senior Je’Nia Sears, the 2013 champion, enter the 2015 Championships ranked one-two in the Conference, with Marler’s 20’-5.25’’ holding a slight edge over Sears’ 20’-4.25’’. UNLV sophomore Ayana Gales is third at 19’-6.75’’.

Triple Jump: Utah State senior Sam Nielson leads the field with a leap of 42’3.50’’, followed by New Mexico sophomore Jannell Hadnot (42’-0.75’’) and Marler (41’-7.75’’).

Shot Put: Colorado State teammates Aaliyah Pete and Kiah Hicks possess the top two throws in the MW this season. Pete, a sophomore, has registered a 54’10.00’’, while Hicks checks in at 52’-6.75’’. San Diego State senior Jasmine Burrell is third with a throw of 51’-8.50’’.

Weight Throw: Defending champion Hicks is second to last year’s runner-up, Wyoming’s Shreese Daniels. Daniels, a senior, has uncorked a 68’-1.00’’ this year while Hicks checks in at 65’-11.75’’. Burrell is third at 64’-10.75’’.

Pentathlon: Hawkins aims to defend her title and will enter the 2015 MW Championships with the season’s best point total of 4,059. New Mexico junior Samantha Bowe is second at 3,658 points and Colorado State junior Jessica Green is third at 3,545 points.