The men’s and women’s indoor track and field season is coming to a close with the Big Sky Conference Championships set for this weekend in Pocatello, Idaho.
The Big Sky Conference is packed with talent. During the fall, the Southern Utah University men’s cross country team took second in the Big Sky Conference Championships behind the Northern Arizona University (NAU) Lumberjacks. The Lumberjacks eventually went on to win the national title.
The Lumberjacks may have had the edge in cross country, but SUU has leaders in other categories along with improvements since the fall.
Senior Jayson Kovar has had a great indoor season and is among the leaders in the Big Sky Conference men’s shot put and weight throw. Kovar broke his own indoor shot put record this season throwing a 58’.5”.
Freshman Tre James stands at the number one spot in the Big Sky Conference for the men’s 60-meter with a time of 6.74 seconds. James is also ranked third in the 200 with a time of 21.68 seconds.
Among the leaders in the 200 is sophomore Brandan Harley, with a time of 22.07 seconds. Harley also has the fastest 400 time with a personal best of 47.97 seconds.
SUU took the first and second spot in the men’s 3,000 as well. Sophomore Joshua Collins and junior Matthew Wright have times of 8:02.03 and 8:07.61, respectively.
In addition, the men’s distance medley relay (DMR) broke a school record this season and holds the number one spot with a time of 9:48.48.
The men’s team looks to improve this season in the competitive conference.
“We’re there to compete, we’re there to fight,” Head Coach Eric Houle said. “We want to continue the progress we’ve been making.”
The women’s team finished in 12th last year. Houle has seen drastic improvements this season and believes the current team is as good as any teams that have won the Championship in the past.
Despite not having any athletes holding the number one spot on the women’s side, there are many athletes who have scoring potential for the Thunderbirds.
In the women’s one-mile, junior Sharlie Dimick has a time of 4:46.96, which is good enough to be ranked second in the conference.
The Big Sky Conference Championships started Thursday, with the men’s Heptathlon and the women’s Pentathlon; both events take two days to complete. All other events start today.