UCCS has 15 named all-RMAC as teams take sixth at conference championships

By Doug Fitzgerald published February 26, 2011

KEARNEY, Neb. - Jonathan Wright joined Lauren Graham as a Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference champion as the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs completed a strong showing at the RMAC Indoor Track & Field Championships Saturday at the Health & Sports Center.

Wright won the men's 400-meter dash final with a time of 50.39 seconds, edging a trio of Nebraska-Kearney runners. Graham won the women's pole vault on Friday, breaking the RMAC record in the process.

In all, 27 UCCS athletes scored points during the two-day event as both the men's and women's teams finished in sixth place. For both, it was a better finish than predicted in the preseason coaches' poll. To accomplish that, 35 of the 38 UCCS athletes participating finished equal to or better than their place on the RMAC's performance list coming into the event.

The Mountain Lions also had another national qualifier. Erika Cushnie cleared 1.67 meters (5 feet, 5.75 inches) in the women's high jump, earning a provisional qualifying mark. She took third overall in the event.

Cushnie's mark set a new UCCS school record. Also establishing new school standards were the women's 4 X 400-meter relay team (Ashley Benfield, Alexa Urban, Briana Kay Alley and Dawn Eckert). Benfield set a new school record individually in the 400-meter dash in the prelims and then broke it again in the finals.

While the records were impressive, the most inspirational performance was turned in by Colby Elliott in the Heptathlon. Competing on an injured foot, Elliott did his jumps opposite-footed and nearly matched his personal best in the high jump. He aggravated the injury in the 60-meter hurdles but still gutted out the pole vault and ran the 1,ooo meters in what amounted to a soft cast.

The results show a seventh-place finish and two team points for Elliott. The results can't come close to showing his heart.

Brien Hopkins led UCCS in the Heptathlon with a second-place finish, while Canyon Parcell took sixth and Elliott seventh.

The UCCS women's team tied Colorado State-Pueblo with 41 team points each, thus splitting the four Steel & Silver Series points available for indoor track. UCCS now leads the rivalry series 22-10 and needs just one more point to retain the Ent Federal Credit Union Trophy for the sixth straight year.

In other women's results, Chelsie Overocker finished fourth in the triple jump, Urban took fifth in the 800, Kaitlin Frier and Melissa Buchanan took 13th and 14th in the 3,000 and Emily Weeks finished 12th in the long jump.

In other men's events, Anthony Davis took fifth in the 800 and teamed with Jon Christian, Travis Whitman and Alan Ford to grab second in the 4 X 400-meter relay. Mike English finished eighth in the 5,000 and Chris Reynolds and Matt Winfrey took 11th and 12th in the 800.

Combine those with Friday's results and 15 Mountain Lions earned all-RMAC honors. Below is the list:

UCCS women earning all-RMAC honors were:
First Team
Lauren Graham - Pole vault

Second Team
Erika Cushnie - High jump
Chelsie Overocker - Triple jump

Third Team
Ashley Benfield - 400-meter dash
Alexa Urban - 800-meter run
Kaitlin Frier - 5,000-meter run

UCCS men earning all-RMAC honors were:
First Team
Jonathan Wright - 400-meter dash
Brien Hopkins - Heptathlon

Second Team
4 X 400 relay team (Jonathan Wright, Jon Christian, Travis Whitman and Alan Ford)

Third Team
Anthony Davis - 800-meter run
Anthony Cardinale - Long jump
Canyon Parcell - Heptathlon

UCCS Players/Staff Featured

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
Kaitlin FrierKaitlin Frier
Kaitlin FrierKaitlin Frier
Kaitlin FrierKaitlin FrierDistance
Kaitlin FrierKaitlin FrierDistance
Kaitlin FrierKaitlin FrierDistance
Kaitlin FrierKaitlin FrierDistance
Kaitlin FrierKaitlin Frier
Kaitlin FrierKaitlin Frier
Brien HopkinsBrien HopkinsJumps/Multi'sFr
Brien HopkinsBrien HopkinsJumps/Multi'sSo
Brien HopkinsBrien HopkinsJumps/Multi'sJr
Brien HopkinsBrien HopkinsJumps/Multi'sSr
Anthony DavisAnthony DavisSr.
Anthony DavisAnthony DavisDistanceJr
Anthony DavisAnthony DavisDistanceSo
Anthony DavisAnthony DavisDistanceFr
Anthony DavisAnthony DavisDistanceFr
Anthony DavisAnthony DavisDistanceSr.
Mike EnglishMike EnglishDistanceSo
Mike EnglishMike EnglishDistanceFr
Mike EnglishMike EnglishDistanceSr.
Mike EnglishMike EnglishSo
Mike EnglishMike EnglishFr
Mike EnglishMike EnglishSr.
Mike EnglishMike EnglishDistanceJr
Mike EnglishMike EnglishJr
Ashley Benfield Ashley Benfield Hurdles/Sprints So
Ashley Benfield Ashley Benfield Hurdles/Sprints
Ashley Benfield Ashley Benfield Hurdles/Sprints
Ashley Benfield Ashley Benfield Hurdles/Sprints
Ashley BenfieldAshley BenfieldSo.
Ashley BenfieldAshley Benfield
Ashley BenfieldAshley Benfield
Ashley BenfieldAshley Benfield
Lauren GrahamLauren GrahamJumps
Lauren GrahamLauren GrahamJumps
Lauren GrahamLauren GrahamJumps
Jon ChristianJon ChristianSprints
Jon ChristianJon ChristianSprints
Alan Ford Alan Ford SprintsSo
Alan Ford Alan Ford SprintsFr
Alan Ford Alan Ford SprintsSr
Alan Ford Alan Ford SprintsJr
Erika CushnieErika CushnieJumps
Erika CushnieErika CushnieJumps
Chelsie OverockerChelsie OverockerJumps
Chelsie OverockerChelsie OverockerJumps
Matt Winfrey Matt Winfrey Middle Distance So
Matt Winfrey Matt Winfrey Middle Distance Fr.
Matt Winfrey Matt Winfrey Middle Distance Fr.
Matt WinfreyMatt WinfreySo
Matt WinfreyMatt WinfreySo
Dawn EckertDawn EckertSprints
Dawn EckertDawn EckertSprints
Dawn EckertDawn EckertSprints
Dawn EckertDawn EckertSprints
Dawn EckertDawn Eckert
Colby ElliottColby ElliottMulti Event
Colby ElliottColby ElliottMulti Event
Additional News Stories
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May 19, 2011Nine Mountain Lions earn USTFCCCA all-region honorsNine University of Colorado Colorado Springs track & field athletes were named to the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association All-Central Region team, which was released Tuesday.Alan Ford, Marc Hensley, Travis Whitman and Jonathan Wright were all named all-region as members of the UCCS 4 X 400-relay team, while Anthony Cardinale earned the honor in the long jump. On the women's side, honorees were Ashley Benfield (400-meter hurdles), Lauren Graham (pole vault), Chelsie Overocker (triple jump) and Alexa Urban (800-meter run).
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May 9, 2011Hopkins, Seniors Highlight Day at RMAC ChampionshipsGOLDEN, Colo. – Brien Hopkins’ performance in the decathlon at the 2011 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Outdoor Track & Field Championships was much more than the third-place finish indicated by the official results.
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