Jackson Sets American Steeplechase Record

by Jeff Reynolds, BYU Athletic Media Relations

BYU senior Elizabeth Jackson turned in a 9:55.63 in the 3,000-meter steeplechase to set an American record on Friday, cruising to an easy victory at the 2001 Mountain West Conference Outdoor Track & Field Championships in San Diego. After day three, the BYU women, who have won 18 straight outdoor league championships, lead the field with 85 points, while the men are in third place with 41 total team points.
“Whenever I run, I always start out trying to set a new PR,” Jackson said. “It really was a tough race. I really didn’t feel very good, especially the last two laps. They were hard. Hopefully I will keep getting stronger and can continue dropping my time.”

The BYU women picked up 26 points in the steeplechase, with Jackson picking up 10 first-place points. Freshman Nan Evans recorded a personal best, 10:12.90, to take third, while senior Tara Haynes (10:17.39), Katie Martin (10:50.73) and Sherida Rogers (11:06.12) finished fourth, fifth and eighth respectively. The Cougars have qualified at least eight athletes for the NCAA National Championships. Jackson’s time shaved nearly two seconds off the previous American record of 9:57.20, which she previously set during the US Olympic Trials in Sacramento, Calif., last summer.

After taking second in the heptathlon earlier in the week, freshman Maret Komarova posted a personal-best 144’00” in the javelin to pick up third-place honors in the event. Junior Carrie Sanders recorded a mark of 142’03” to finish fourth for the Cougars.

Having to withdraw from the heptathlon on Thursday with lower back pain, BYU trainers worked throughout the day to get senior Kirsten Bolm ready for competition in the 100-meter hurdles, as well as the long jump. Bolm qualified for Saturday’s finals in the hurdles with a time of 13.46. Bolm also won her second straight MWC Outdoor long jump title with a mark of 20’10.50″. Sophomore Nikki Hughes recorded a career-best to finish second in the long jump, posting a provisional mark of 20’07.00″.

Sarah Ellett blew out the competition in the 10,000 meters, posting a conference meet record 35:20.34 in the event. Amy Bair finished fourth with a time of 35:33.00.

Four Cougars qualified for the 800-meter finals on Saturday, including Jamie Philburn (2:14.43), Holly Haguewood (2:14.59), Tara Haynes (2:14.89) and Nan Evans (2:16.22).

In men’s action, seniors Kenneth Andam and Thobias Akwenye advanced to the finals on Saturday in both the 100 and 200 meters. Andam won both the 100 and 200-meter preliminaries, including a 20.78 in the 200. Senior Slade Combs, who also qualified in the 110-meter hurdles, qualified for Saturday’s final in the 200. Both Akwenye and Combs qualified in the 200 with an identical 21.20.

Senior Chris Kemp turned in the top qualifying mark in the 400-intermediate hurdles with a heat-winning time of 52.03. Sophomore Daymon Visser also qualified for the finals with a 53.07 in the 400-meter hurdles.

In the 10,000 meters, senior John Hedengren came up just a little short, taking third place with a time of 30:17.61. Freshman favorite Josh Rohatinsky did not compete in the 10K with a sore ankle, but will continue to prepare for the NCAA National Championships in Eugene, Ore., after posting a qualifying mark of 29:07.36 at the Stanford Invitational on March 31.

BYU picked up 10 points in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, recording a third- and fifth-place finish in the event. Junior Tyler Bushnell took third with a season-best 9:04.10, while Trevor Pettingill also posted a season-best 9:09.51.

In the javelin, junior Dan Uffens outdistanced the field by nearly 10 feet, winning the event with a mark of 203’01.00″.

The Cougars will wrap things up tomorrow, competing in several final events throughout the day. For a complete schedule and results for the 2001 MWC Outdoor Track & Field Championships, please visit the Mountain West Conference website at: http://mountainwestconf.fansonly.com/sports/c-track/stats/051601.html

San Diego, CA – Wednesday 05/16/01 to Saturday 05/19/01


Women’s 3,000 Meter Steeplechase

C Conference: 9:59.50 Elizabeth Jackson, BYU 04/21/01
a NCAA Auto Qual: 10:20.00
p NCAA Prov Qual: 11:10.00

Finals – Results – Friday 05/18/01

===== ========================= == ========================= ========== ===
1 Elizabeth Jackson SR BYU 9:55.63 C 10
2 Meg Larson SO CSU 10:10.16 a 8
3 Nan Evans FR BYU 10:12.90 a 6
4 Tara Haynes SR BYU 10:17.39 a 5
5 Katie Martin FR BYU 10:50.73 p 4
6 Trina Bateman SO Utah 10:59.12 p 3
7 Erin Cunningham SR CSU 11:02.24 p 2
8 Sherida Rogers SO BYU 11:06.12 p 1
9 Jean Taylor FR Air Force 11:09.40 p
10 Jennifer Stakiw SO San Diego State 11:22.68
11 Lara Coppinger SO Air Force 11:24.85
12 Hillery Gemmill JR San Diego State 11:37.01
13 Stephanie Hanks Wyoming 11:41.29
14 Sophia Hawker SR San Diego State 11:47.14
15 Leslie Jackson FR Wyoming 11:59.80
16 Hannah Radzinski SO New Mexico 12:11.42

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