Feb 292004
Authors: John Teten

COLORADO SPRINGS – The CSU men’s track and field team came up

just short of a title in this weekend’s action-packed Mountain West

Conference indoor track and field championships.

With 164 points the men finished second behind winner Brigham

Young (169.5). The women finished third with 103 points.

Saturday’s final event, the men’s 4×440 relay, decided the final


BYU, CSU and Air Force each entered the final event with the top

three team scores, with the Rams trailing the Cougars and


When junior John Woods grabbed the baton and sprinted away on

the third leg, the Rams were behind both Air Force and BYU. Woods

made up ground, but the final result rested on Brandon Kent and the

race’s final leg.

Kent, a junior, bolted around the track amid echoing chants of

“C-S-U” from his exuberant teammates and Ram faithful. Kent passed

Air Force’s Jim Campbell and approached the BYU frontrunner. Kent

crossed the finish line .19 seconds short of the victory. The

second-place relay finish propelled CSU past Air Force but just shy

of BYU.

Senior Austin Vigil was among the many star athletes this

weekend, when he broke two MWC championship meet records. On

Friday, he captured the men’s 5,000-meter title, finishing in 14

minutes, 43.20 seconds. On Saturday, he topped the 3,000, finishing

in 8:33.29.

“These were my first two victories collegiately,” Vigil said.

“It was a good time to get it done.”

The men’s high jump also provided fireworks for the Rams. Jacob

Benson and Jon Uher each gave heavenly performances. Benson leaped

to first, Uher to second.

“It was definitely a God thing,” Uher said. “We were praying

before every jump. It’s true, white boys can’t jump … without

divine intervention.”

“It was awesome,” said Benson, who also finished fourth in both

the long jump and triple jump. “I was so psyched; we were feeding

off one another and praying.”

Brian Kelly came from the back of the pack to claim second place

in the 800.

“It’s hard to be patient,” Kelly said. “You’re thinking, ‘Oh,

God, I’m not gonna catch these guys,’ but sitting in the back

allows me to see the race unfold.”

Junior John Woods also had a big weekend. Woods won the 60

(6.69), the 200 (21.16) and the men’s high point award (22). Other

big performances included Brandon Kent and Justin Hazzard finishing

second and third in the 400, respectively. Mike Nicks took third in

the mile and Magnus Lohse finished second in the shot put.

BYU ran away with the women’s championship, nearly 100 points

ahead of runner-up San Diego State. However, that did not leave the

Rams void of star power.

Danielle Korb took third place in the mile run and 10th in the

3,000. Also in the mile, Rebekah Yetzer finished seventh.

Keela Niemeyer won the shot put with a throw of 15.62 meters and

freshman Janay DeLoach placed second in the long jump. Cristina

Gourdin and Katie Lloyd ended third and fourth in the women’s


Distance runners Nicole Feest and Colleen Blair were the only

two able to break up a powerful BYU distance group. Feest took

fourth and Blair fifth in the 3,000; BYU had the other five of the

top seven. In the 5,000, Blair finished fourth and Feest seventh,

once again surrounded by Cougars.

The weekend was one full of excitement, fierce competition and

high-octane performances.

“It’s the most intense meet of the year,” Kent said. “You plan

on running your best in front of family, friends, all your

teammates. It’s always fun to watch, to sit back and hear the


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