Track and field improves as conference gets closer
Courtesy: Weber State  
Release: Saturday 04/30/2012
Courtesy: Robert Casey
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Amber Henry now has the fifth best time in the nation in the steeplechase.

The Weber State men’s and women’s track and field teams saw more improvements over the weekend as the Wildcats get closer to the Big Sky Conference meet. 

Sunday night WSU junior Amber Henry improved her time in the steeplechase as she competed at the Payton Jordan Invitational at Stanford.  Henry posted a career best time of 9:53.94 in the race which included several of the top collegiate and professional runners in the nation.  She was the third collegiate finisher in the race and that time ranks as the second best in Weber State history and is the third fastest in Big Sky Conference history.  It is also the fifth best in the nation this season and is an automatic qualifying time for the U.S. Olympic trials.   

The rest of the Wildcat teams competed Friday and Saturday at the BYU Robison Invitational in Provo.  The Wildcat women’s team had three new conference qualifiers and had 12 seasonal best performances. 

The Wildcats made great improvements in the sprints.  Senior Kristen Billings took fourth in the 100 meters but posted a career best time of 11.91.  That time ranks as the sixth fastest time in Weber State history and is the fourth best in the Big Sky this season. 

Senior Audrey Smith had a career best time of 12.07 and Amanda Alston posted a time of 12.10 in the 100 meters, also a season best. 

In the 400 meters Alston won the event and had a career best time of 54.50 in the event.   That time is tied for the third best in school history and is the top time in the conference this season. 

Junior Laken Hintze won the 1500 meters with a seasonal best time of 4:28.18, winning the event by more than seven seconds.  The time ranks as the third best in the Big Sky this season. 

Senior Loren Storey qualified for conference in the steeplechase with a time of 11:16.80. Both relay teams also performed well and the 1600 meter relay team now has the second fastest time in the conference.   

On the field side the highlight of the day was freshman Elisa Isakson who tied the Weber State school record in the pole vault with a mark of 12-00.  Isakson won the event by nearly one foot. 

Lauren Thomas qualified for conference in the heptathlon with 4,034 points, taking fourth overall.  AmyLynn Schmidt qualified in the high jump at 5-03.50.   Freshman Lauren Navidomskis finished third in the high jump at 5-01.00. 

As for the Wildcat men the team got a big lift from senior Tyler McBee who was competing in his first meet of the season.  McBee took second in the 400 meter hurdles, posting a time of 52.41.  That time is currently the fastest in the Big Sky this season.  He also finished third in the 100 meter hurdles at 14.73, now the sixth best in the Big Sky. 

The men’s 400 meter relay team took second at 41.20, now the second best in the Big Sky this season. 

On the men’s field side Zach Parry was the top collegiate finisher in the hammer throw with a mark of 194-05.75.  Parry also finished sixth in the shot put at 49-01.00. 

Chris Struckman had a seasonal best mark of 23-01.25 in the long jump to finish seventh overall, and he qualified for conference in the event.  Dustin Martin finished sixth in the discus. 

“Both teams accomplished a lot and continued to make improvements,” said WSU Director of Track and Field Jim Blaisdell.  “We now will have our home tune up meet this week and then it’s time for conference.”

The Wildcats will return home this week for the final meet before the conference championships when they host the Weber State Twilight meet this Wednesday at Stewart Stadium.