March 29, 2006
Coming off a very impressive indoor season under first year head coach Kyle Kepler, the University of Utah women's track and field team is preparing to begin the 2006 outdoor season. The Ute's compiled 69 personal best marks and generated 37 new all-time top 10-performances during the indoor season and have their sights set even higher for the outdoor campaign. The Utah women finished sixth as a team at the Mountain West Conference indoor championships and will aim to move up the conference ladder during the outdoor season.
"We had several personal and season bests at the indoor conference meet and scored the number of points we thought we could," commented coach Kepler. "We just lack the depth that some of the other teams in the MWC have right now. We have to double and triple all of our athletes while the schools at the top can be more selective. Once we build this program's numbers and talent pool in the coming years I fully expect Utah to be a team at or near the top of the conference standings on a yearly basis."
During the indoor season the Utes were led by Amanda Feigt. Feight was a two-time all-conference performer at this year's MWC indoor championships. She was also a five-time honoree of the weekly Utah Track and Field Outstanding Performer award (1/14, 1/21, 1/28, 2/4, and 2/12), and was awarded the Utah Most Valuable Performer award for her performance at the MWC championships.
Accomplishments from other girls on the team include:
AJ Roby.....MVP (2/4); OP (1/21); PR's-2
Janett Ern.... MVP (2/12); OP (2/25 MWC championships); PR's-2
Kellie Anderson...MVP (1/28, 2/12); OP (1/14, 2/4, 2/25 MWC championships); PR's-7
Haley McAllister...MVP (2/4); OP (1/14, 1/28, 2/12, 2/25 MWC championships); PR's-6 in three different events
Vanessa Mortensen...OP (1/14, 1/21, 2/25 MWC championships); PR's-2
Liddy Steele (pole vault), Ashely Warnick (distance), Nicki Hugie (middle distance), Nikki Mancinelli (high jump), Ashley Patterson (sprints/jumps), and Jennifer Cutrer (hurdles) also had very solid indoor seasons.
"I really like the approach this team took during the indoor season," said coach Kepler. "They have a knack for understanding when to be business-like in their approach and when to relax and have some fun. They know what needs to be done and they do the right things the right way. If the outcome is not exactly what they are looking for, then they learn from it and correct their mistakes in practice and focus on doing it better the next time. Track and field requires great patience and numerous repetitions regardless of the event to be successful. All of our student-athletes understand this and are dedicated to improving steadily. As a coach, that's all you can ask for."
The Utes open the outdoor season this weekend at the Stanford Invitational and the BYU Invitational.