Despite Blackout, Mountain Lions Get Power Surge at Air Force Invite

By Shannon Payne published February 14, 2009

U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. - It was lights-out for the Mountain Lions' competition at Saturday's Air Force Invitational "literally and figuratively. On the second day of the two-day competition, the power in the Cadet Fieldhouse went out just after eleven a.m., delaying an already slow track meet by three hours. The Mountain Lions however, were completely undeterred by the turn of events, continuing to compete in the same style that they are accustomed to.

The meet, though composed largely of NCAA Division I schools, also featured a number of Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference rivals from around the state and served as a tune-up in the final two weeks leading up to the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference championships.

"It's always good for us to get to compete in big meets like this," said assistant coach Corey Kubatzky. "It gets us comfortable with having to compete in multiple heats and at a high level."

Thanks to the men's and women's 4x400 meter relay teams, UCCS fans got to watch two school records fall in a span of about 15 minutes. Even more impressive was the fact that none of the runners competing in either relay had fresh legs, as all of them had raced in at least two events prior to the start of the 4x400.

Jenny Hunt started the women off with a conservative but competitive pace, gradually working her way up through the pack in good position to pass the baton off to Kelsey Barry. Barry, Kylie Honigord and Dawn Eckert ran three especially aggressive legs to take the team to a record time of 4:04.41, and earning them a fifth place finish in a Division-I laden field.

During Friday's events, Barry, Eckert, and Hunt had all competed in the 400 meters, with Eckert and Hunt also competing in the 200 meter dash shortly beforehand with Ailena McDonald. Honigford, along with Tracey Falsetto, had also competed in the prelims of the 800 meter run and advanced to Saturday's finals, where Falsetto took fifth and Honigford placed 11th.

The men's side of the 4x400 had similar success as David Mueller got the team off to an excellent start. After Alex Vazquez and Jason Shaver's legs of the race, Chris Reynolds finished the job and took the team to a ninth place finish, narrowly being out-leaned at the line by Air Force in their heat, but besting RMAC rivals Metro and Western State. Their time of 3:25 flat was also a school record.

"We were all really tired, so we didn't really go into the race with any expectations," said Reynolds. "The main goal was really to just get in a good seed-time for conference, but other than that we didn't really go in with expectations and it didn't really cross my mind that we would break the school record. So we're pretty excited."

Mueller and Shaver, along with Vy Nguyen, had also competed Friday night in the 200 meter dash. Reynolds and Vazquez had run in the prelims of the 800, where Reynolds moved into Saturday's final, and Vazquez narrowly missed a qualifying spot and instead competed in Saturday's consolation heat of the 800. Reynolds and Vazquez took fifth and sixth, both in 1:55. Behind the two, Josh Jones took 26th overall.

Steve Gomez continued on his campaign to earn a berth at the NCAA Championships. Jumping for the first time in actual high-jump spikes rather than sprint-spikes, Gomez-currently ranked 12thin the nation-cleared a height of 2.05 meters. The mark was enough to earn him fourth place, and was just off of his personal best.

Brian Hopkins, normally a high jumper alongside Gomez, took to the 60 meter hurdles, where he placed 20th.

Kaityn Frier, one of the only competing distance runners, out-kicked Colorado State's Samantha McMillan in the final straightaway to take fourth. Alex Tiernan placed fifth in the seeded men's heat, while Joel Keinitz took fifth in the un-seeded heat. Anthony Davis, in his first race after returning from injury, took 39th in the 400 meters.

The pair of Trevor Nau and Preston Williams took 34th and 37th during Friday night's weight throw.

"This was the kind of meet we needed and sets us up well heading into the Mines meet next Friday evening as a tune-up for the RMAC meet," said head coach Mark Misch. "We still have some folks who aren't healthy that we held out of this meet, but hopefully we will be firing on all cylinders at Mines."

 

UCCS Players/Staff Featured

Kelsey BarryKelsey BarrySprints
Kelsey BarryKelsey BarrySprints
Kelsey BarryKelsey BarrySprints
Kelsey BarryKelsey BarrySprints
Kelsey BarryKelsey BarrySprints
Preston WilliamsPreston WilliamsThrows
Preston WilliamsPreston WilliamsThrows
Preston WilliamsPreston WilliamsThrows
Christopher ReynoldsChristopher ReynoldsMid-Distance
Christopher ReynoldsChristopher ReynoldsMid-Distance
Christopher ReynoldsChristopher ReynoldsMid-Distance
Christopher ReynoldsChristopher ReynoldsMid-Distance
Christopher ReynoldsChristopher Reynolds
Christopher ReynoldsChristopher Reynolds
Christopher ReynoldsChristopher Reynolds
Christopher ReynoldsChristopher Reynolds
Joshua JonesJoshua JonesDistance
Joshua JonesJoshua JonesDistance
Joshua JonesJoshua JonesDistance
Joshua JonesJoshua JonesDistance
Joshua JonesJoshua Jones
Joshua JonesJoshua Jones
Joshua JonesJoshua Jones
Joshua JonesJoshua Jones
Kylie HonigfordKylie Honigford
Kylie HonigfordKylie Honigford
Kylie HonigfordKylie Honigford
Ailena McDonaldAilena McDonaldJumps/Sprints
Ailena McDonaldAilena McDonaldJumps/Sprints
Ailena McDonaldAilena McDonaldJumps/Sprints
Ailena McDonaldAilena McDonaldJumps/Sprints
Steven GomezSteven GomezJumps
Steven GomezSteven GomezJumps
Jason ShaverJason ShaverSprints
Jason ShaverJason ShaverSprints
Jason ShaverJason ShaverSprints
Jason ShaverJason ShaverSprints
Additional News Stories
July 8, 2009Barry, Frier garner individual academic honors, UCCS captures team recognitionThe University of Colorado at Colorado Springs was named a women's 2009 Division II All-Academic Track and Field Team by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches' Association.
May 21, 2009Barry Named First-Team All-Academic, Seven Others Named to Honor RollCOLORADO SPRINGS - University of Colorado at Colorado Springs runner Kelsey Barry was named Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Outdoor Track & Field First-Team All-Academic, the RMAC announced Thursday.
April 19, 2009Mountain Lions Compete in GunnisonThe Mountain Lions began their gearing-up process for the Conference Championships as they headed up to rare air to compete at the Mountaineer Open in Gunnison.
April 9, 2009Barry, Nine Others Named to Academic All-RMAC Team for Indoor TrackUniversity of Colorado at Colorado Springs junior Kelsey Barry was named second team indoor track & field all-academic by the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference while nine of her teammates were named to the RMAC's indoor track academic honor roll, the conference announced Wednesday.
March 21, 2009Mountain Lions Open Outdoor TrackSeason at Potts Invitational in BoulderBOULDER - The sprints and field events crews opened up their outdoor track season at CU-Boulder's Pott's Invitational. With the indoor season officially ending one week ago, Saturday offered unseasonably fair weather and a good day for the sprinters, throwers, and jumpers establish their standards to work off of for the outdoor season.
Visit our Facebook pageVisit the UCCS Mount Lion's Twitter pageVisit the UCCS Mountain Lions Youtube pageVisit UCCS Rss feeds