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Thursday , June 21 2018
Home | Tag Archives: utep track and field

Tag Archives: utep track and field

Saruni Named C-USA Male Track Athlete of the Year

UTEP track and field claimed the Conference USA Male Track Athlete of the Year for the second consecutive year with sophomore Michael Saruni being named this year’s award winner, it was announced by the league on Thursday morning.

Saruni was crowned the NCAA Champion in the 800m at the NCAA Track and Field Indoor Championships, where he ran the No. 2 time in collegiate history at 1:45.15. His time ranks just behind his coach Paul Ereng (1:44.84, 1989). The Kenya native set a world best time in the 600m at the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Collegiate stopping the clock at 1:14.79.

During the outdoor season, Saruni garnered a bronze-medal finish at the 2018 NCAA Track and Field Outdoor Championships with a time of 1:45.31 and earned his fourth-career All-American honor. ]

He etched his name into NCAA track and field history when he clocked the NCAA record in the 800m at the Desert Heat Classic halting the clock at 1:43.25. His time broke the two-year streak held by Donovan Brazier (1:43.55, Texas A&M).

Saruni holds both indoor and outdoor records in the 800m at UTEP. He was also voted as a semi-finalist in The Bowerman watchlist.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live results and breaking news.

Miners Garner Two All-American Honors at the NCAA Championships

Eugene, Or. – UTEP’s sophomore Michael Saruni and junior Jonah Koech earned All-American honors in the 800m at the NCAA Outdoor Championships on Friday night.

“Sometimes your best is not enough and today was one of those days for Saruni,” said head coach Mika Laaksonen. “He is young and unbelievably talented so he will learn from this. Jonah ran his best 800m and gained plenty of confidence from today’s race. We are so proud of these guys.”

Having to fight against tough weather conditions, both Miners kept pace with the pack of runners throughout the first lap. Heading into the final 200m, Saruni opened a gap before being passed by Isaiah Harris (Penn St.) in the final 15m. The sophomore crossed the finish line at 1:43.31, earning a bronze-medal finish. Koech stopped the clock at 1:46.23 to finish sixth overall.

Saruni and Koech combined to score nine points for the Miners and earn All-American Honors.

Saruni finished his season with a number of accolades, which include posting the NCAA 800m record 1:43.25 at the Desert Heat Classic, clocking a world-best 1:14.79 in the 600m, claiming the NCAA indoor title in the 800m, set the No. 2 NCAA indoor time in the 800m (1:45.15) and posting two school records in the 800m (indoor and outdoor).

Koech finished the 2018 campaign with two Conference USA outdoor titles in the 1,500m and 800m and an indoor conference title in the mile.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live updates and breaking news.

Saruni and Koech Advance to 800m Final

Eugene, Or. – UTEP’s Michael Saruni and Jonah Koech punched their tickets to the 800m final at the NCAA Championships on Wednesday night.

“This was the best possible outcome for us,” head coach Mika Laaksonen said. “Both got through from the heat that had by far the most talent in the field. We are very excited about Friday’s final, it will be one to watch.”

Saruni made his second consecutive appearance at the national championship stage in the 800m and cruised his way to a first-place finish in the first heat, clocking a time of 1:46.98. His time ranks as the second-fastest qualifying time among the eight other finalists.

Koech sprinted to a third-place finish in the first heat with a qualifying time of 1:47.28. The junior is making his first career appearance in the 800m final.

Both Miners will compete in Friday’s final at 7:45 p.m. MT. The action will be broadcasted live on ESPN.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live results and breaking news.

Saruni, Koech Prepped for NCAA Outdoor Championships

UTEP’s Michael Saruni and Jonah Koech head to the pacific northwest for the 2018 NCAA Outdoor Championships in Eugene, Oregon, on June 6 through 9.

This will be the second consecutive appearance Saruni at the NCAA Championships. Last year, the sophomore finished eighth overall after colliding with former teammate Emmanuel Korir. The Kenya native has since then improved over the season, claiming the NCAA Indoor title in the 800m by clocking the No. 2 time in NCAA history at 1:45.15.

His time ranks just behind his coach Paul Ereng (Virginia, 1989) at 1:45.84.

Over the outdoor season, Saruni set the NCAA 800m record at the Desert Heat Classic with a time of 1:43.25. His time broke a two-year stand by Donavan Brazier (Texas A&M, 1:45.55).

Koech will make his second career trip to the national stage in the 800m. During his freshman year he finished ninth overall on the way to earning second team All-American honors. Koech captured the Conference USA indoor title in the mile while placing second in the 800m, tying Saruni with 18 points scored.

The junior notched two conference outdoor titles, doing so in the 1,500m and pulling a surprising upset over Saruni in the 800m, to lead the Miners with 20 points.

Both Miners will compete in the first heat of the semifinals on Wednesday at 7:15 p.m. MT. There will be three heats of eight runners; the top-two finishers from each heat will earn an automatic spot in Friday’s final with the next two best times completing the final field of eight runners.

The 800m final will start at 7:45 p.m. on Friday.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live updates and breaking news.

Flyin’ Miners Complete Final Day at the NCAA West Region Preliminaries

Sacramento, Ca. – The UTEP track and field team concluded the NCAA West Region Preliminaries on Saturday.

Only two Miners competed on the final day of the meet. Newcomer Shakeem Smith raced in the 110m hurdles where he clocked a time of 14.37 to finish 22nd overall. The sophomore finished the season with a personal-best time of 13.97 and ranks fifth in program history.

In the women’s 1,500m, junior Lilian Koech narrowly missed out on a top-12 finish. The Kenya native crossed the finish line with a career-best 4:18.65 earning a 14th-place finish to end the season.

For Michael Saruni and Jonah Koech the season continues. Both mid-distance runners advance to the NCAA Outdoor Championships in Eugene, Ore., on June 6-9.

Saruni has established himself as the greatest 800m collegiate runner, setting the NCAA record time of 1:43.25 at the Desert Heat Classic. He is the overall favorite heading into the championship rounds. Koech ranks ninth in the country with a season-best time of 1:47.05. He had no trouble qualifying to the next round earning a third-place finish on Friday.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live updates and breaking news.

Saruni, Koech Punch Ticket to NCAA Championships

Sacramento, Ca. – UTEP’s sophomore Michael Saruni and junior Jonah Koech dominated the men’s 800m by earning a trip to the NCAA Outdoor Championships on Friday.

“Both Saruni and Koech got the job done,” head coach Mika Laaksonen said. “They didn’t leave anything to chance and executed their race.”

Koech got out early to lead the pack with Saruni trailing behind in the middle of the group. Saruni used a late kick at the end to push himself ahead of the field to finish with a winning time of 1:46.37. Koech crossed the finish line in third place stopping the clock at 1:47.05.

Both Miners will move on to Eugene, Ore. for the NCAA Championships on June 6-9.

In the 400m, senior Asa Guevara sprinted notching a time of 46.37 and just narrowly missing out on a bid to the NCAA Championships. Guevara finished his career at UTEP earning spots on the all-time list in the 200m (20.51) and 400m (45.26).

“Asa ran a great race and tried to put himself in a position to advance to the NCAA Championships and came up just shy,” Laaksonen said. “He had a great career with us and we will sorely miss him.”

Newcomer Shakeem Smith moves on to the 110m hurdle quarterfinals on Saturday at 8:05 p.m. MT. Smith clocked a time of 14.19 to finish fourth in his heat. The Bahamas native will need a top-12 finish in order to move on to the NCAA Championships.

Also competing on Saturday will be Lilian Koech in the 1,500m. Koech advanced to the quarterfinals on Thursday with a time of 4:21.51. The Kenya native will race at 7:45 p.m.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live updates and breaking news.

Four Miners Advance to Friday’s Quarterfinals

Sacramento, Ca. – The UTEP track and field team completed day one at the NCAA West Region Preliminary round with four student-athletes making the quarterfinal round on Thursday afternoon in Sacramento.

The first Miner to punch their ticket was Lilian Koech in the 1,500m. Koech finished fourth in her heat with a time of 4:21.51, earning an automatic bid to the next round. She will enjoy a full day’s rest before returning to the track on Saturday for the 1,500m quarterfinal at 7:45 p.m. MT.

Senior Asa Guevara was the next to earn a quarterfinal slot in the men’s 400m. Guevara crossed the finish line to finish third in his heat stopping the clock at 47.03. The Trinidad and Tobago native will return tomorrow and race in the 400m quarterfinals at 6:30 p.m.

In the men’s 800m, mid-distance duo Michael Saruni and Jonah Koech had no issues running their way into the quarterfinal round. Koech won his heat running a time of 1:50.05. Saruni cruised his way to a second-place finish in the second heat with a time of 1:49.53. Both runners will compete on Friday at 7:30 p.m.

Competing in the women’s 400m hurdles, Dreshanae Rolle clocked a time of 59.67 just missing out on a qualifying spot.

Donivan Ortega was the lone Miner to compete in any field events, finishing with a mark of 6.94m (22-9.25) in the long jump.

Friday’s schedule will begin at 5:30 p.m. with newcomer Shakeem Smith racing in the 110m hurdles. He will need to place in the top 12 in order to advance to Saturday’s quarterfinal race at 8:05 p.m.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter an UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live updates and breaking news.

Flyin’ Miners Set for the NCAA West Region Preliminaries

The UTEP track and field team has seven student-athletes competing at the NCAA West Region Preliminaries on May 24-26 in Sacramento, Calif., hosted by Sacramento State.

Over the next three days, student-athletes from around the nation will take the track to punch their ticket to the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Ore.

Getting the action started for the Miners will be Donivan Ortega competing in the long jump on Thursday at 5:30 p.m. MT. The sophomore established himself early this season setting a personal best of 7.54m (24-9) at the UTEP Springtime taking first place. Ortega notched three consecutive performances jumping over 7.00m (23-0).

Dreshanae Rolle will race in the 400m hurdles prelims starting at 6 p.m. Rolle clocked a career-best 59.02 at the Conference USA Championships taking home a second-place showing. She’s ranked 34th in the west region heading into the meet. Finals will take place on Friday at 8:15 p.m.

Junior Lilian Koech will take the track at 7 p.m. racing in the 1,500m prelims. Koech has racked up an impressive outdoor season earning seven top-five finishes. She was crowned the C-USA Champion in the 1,500m running a personal-best 4:18.72. The Kenya native ranks 17th in the west region. The finals will be on Saturday at 7:15 p.m.

In the 400m, senior Asa Guevara will represent the Miners starting at 8:20 p.m. Guevara has earned six top-five finishes over the season. He claimed gold at the C-USA Championships in the 400m with a personal best of 45.26. The Trinidad and Tobago native ranks eighth in the west region. The 400m finals will start at 6:30 p.m. on Friday

Closing out the first day of competition will be the highly anticipated 800m at 9:10 p.m. featuring Michael Saruni and Jonah Koech. Saruni clocked the NCAA All-Time Best record in the 800m with a time of 1:43.25 at the Desert Heat Classic in Tucson, Ariz. The sophomore ranks first in the country. Koech notched gold medals in the 800m and 1,500m at the conference championships. The junior heads into the competition ranked ninth in the nation.

Newcomer Shakeem Smith will participate in the 110m hurdles on Friday at 5:30 p.m. Smith notched a fourth-place finish at the C-USA Championships with a time of 14.09. The 110m hurdle finals will be on Saturday at 5:30 p.m.

During the preliminary rounds (Thursday/Friday), the top-three finishers from each heat plus the next three best times will advance to the quarterfinals (Friday/Saturday). The top-three finishers from each quarterfinal heat plus the next three best times will advance to the NCAA Championships.

Live Stats available here.  Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live updates and breaking news.

Saruni Makes Fifth Straight Appearance on Bowerman Watch List

In his second year in the Orange and Blue, Michael Saruni has established himself as one of the greatest 800m runners in NCAA history and has been named to his fifth Bowerman Watch List honor, it was announced by the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association on Thursday.

Saruni has been the headliner for the Miners during the 2018 season, after registering a world record 1:14.79 in the 600m during the indoor season. He made his return to the national stage in College Station, Texas, for the NCAA Indoor Championships running a winning time of 1:45.15 and solidifying his spot at No. 2 NCAA All-Time Best in the 800m.

The Kenya native is coached by 1988 Olympic gold medalist Paul Ereng, who holds the indoor NCAA record in the 800m (1:44.84).

The sophomore sensation made history during the outdoor season at the Desert Heat Classic, breaking the NCAA 800m record previously held by Donovan Brazier (1:43.55, Texas A&M) with a time of 1:43.25.

Over the course of the season, Saruni has been named to the watch list five consecutive times. He is the second-most voted athlete on the watch list behind Grant Holloway (Florida), Josh Kerr (New Mexico), Justin Knight (Syracuse) and Ioannis Kyriazis (Texas A&M), who all have six straight appearances.

He joins the ranks of Miners who have made appearances on The Bowerman Watch List including, Blessing Okagbare (2010), Anthony Rotich (2014, 2015) and Emmanuel Korir (2017). Okagbare was named a finalist during her senior season and Korir made the semi-finalist cut last year.

Saruni is scheduled to compete in the 800m at the NCAA West Preliminary rounds on May 24-26 in Sacramento, Cailf.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live updates and breaking news.

Miners Claim 11 Medals at the Conference USA Championships

HOUSTON – The UTEP track and field team wrapped up the final day at the 2018 Conference USA Outdoor Championships taking him 11 medals in six different events on Sunday at Wendel D. Ley Holloway Field in Houston.

“Injuries really plagued us this heading into this meet and I felt both teams performed as best they could,” UTEP head coach Mika Laaksonen said. “The men’s team was only 10 points away from second place and showed how hard our team battled.”

Mid-distance duo, Jonah Koech and Michael Saruni dominated in the 1,500m and 800m finals. Koech claimed gold in the 1,500m with a time of 3:49.73, followed by Saruni taking home silver with a time of 3:50.09.

The Kenya natives returned in the 800m producing the same result, Koech (1:48.79) followed by Saruni (1:49.71) to finish first and second, respectively. Koech scored 20 team points, while Saruni added 16 points.

On the women’s side, Lilian Koech garnered a gold-medal finish in the 1,500m with a winning time of 4:18.72. She returned in the 800m running a time of 2:06.17 taking home silver. Linda Cheruiyot notched a fifth-place showing in the 800m with a time of 2:11.63 and crossed the finish line at 4:33.67 in the 1,500m for eighth overall.

Koech scored 18 points for the Miners, while Cheruiyot added another five points.

Newcomer Shakeem Smith sprinted to a bronze-medal finish in the 400m clocking a personal-best time of 51.95. Earlier in the day Smith narrowly missed out on a podium finish clocking 14.05 in the 110m hurdles garnering fourth place. Smith scored 11.5 team points.

Senior Asa Guevara captured his first C-USA title in the 400m running a career-best 45.26. He returned in the 200m earning fourth overall with a time of 20.97. Guevara scored 15.5 team points.

In the women’s 400m hurdles, junior Dreshanae Rolle earned runner up by clocking a personal-best 59.02 and scored eight team points.

In the men’s 5,000m, newcomer Boaz Ronoh led the trio of Miners competing with a time of 14:48.87 to take fourth overall. Freshman Cornelius Kapel followed closely behind crossing the finish line at 14:51.15 in fifth place. Antony Kosgei clocked a time of 15:06.36 to finish 10th overall. Kapel and Ronoh combined for nine team points.

Sophomore Madision Gibson added three team points in the 400m clocking a time of 54.88 earning sixth overall.

Donivan Ortega leaped out to 14.94m (49-0.25) in the triple jump finishing in seventh place and scoring 2 team points.

Closing out the night in the women’s 4x400m relay, Gibson, Rolle, Annettee, Bolomboy and Imani Adams combined efforts sealed a silver-medal finish with a time of 3:40.45 registering eight team points.

The team standings on the men’s side was a battle for second place, the Miners finished sixth overall with 100 points. Charlotte took home first with 149 points, Southern Miss took home second with 110 points, UTSA third with 109 points, Rice and WKU tied for fourth with 105 points.

On the women’s side, Southern Miss finished first with 131 points, Mid. Tenn. Claimed second with 116 and UTEP finished eighth overall with 52 points.

The Miners will return to competition for the NCAA West Preliminaries held in Sacramento, Ca., on May 24-26.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live updates and breaking news.

Fourteen Miners Advance to Finals at C-USA Championships

HOUSTON – UTEP track and field wrapped up day three at the 2018 Conference USA Outdoor Championships at the Wendel D. Holloway Field.

“We had some good performances throughout the day,” UTEP head coach Mika Laaksonen said. “There are still some things we need to work on but both men’s and women’s teams put themselves in a good position for tomorrow’s final.”

The day started with a second and third-place showing by Jonah Koech and Michael Saruni in the 1,500m. Koech clocked a time of 3:59.14, followed by Saruni (3:59.15) earning an automatic-qualifying spot in Sunday’s final at 5:15 p.m. MT.

The mid-distance duo also advanced to the 800m final. Koech crossed the finish line with a time of 1:50.79 to win the first heat. Saruni cruised to an easy second-place finish in the second heat with a qualifying time of 1:52.93. The 800m final will start at 6:20 p.m. on Sunday.

Lilian Koech and Linda Cheruiyot matched their male counterpart’s performances by qualifying in both the 800m and 1,500m. Koech notched an overall first-place finish in the 1,500m with a time of 4:34.35 and garnered second place in second heat of the 800m clocking in at 2:12.50. Cheruiyot registered a time of 4:34.41 in the 1,500m finishing second in the second heat and took first in the third heat of the 800m with a time of 2:12.30.

The Kenya natives with compete in the 1,500m final on Sunday at 5:05 p.m. and will return for the 800m final at 6:25 p.m.

Newcomer Shakeem Smith stamped his place in the 110m hurdles with a time of 14.10 and the fourth-fastest qualifying time in the field. Smith squeezed his way into the 400m hurdles final with the eighth and final qualifying time of 54.33.

He will race in the 110m hurdles final starting at 5:35 p.m. and in the 400m hurdles at 8:35 p.m.

Junior Dreshanae Rolle showed her speed in the 400m hurdles qualifying to Sunday’s final with a time of 1:01.30. Rolle earned the third-fastest qualifying time and will race tomorrow at 6:40 p.m.

Senior Asa Guevara cruised his way into the 200m and 400m finals. Guevara registered a time of 20.82 in the 200m, which was the third-fastest time of the night. He clocked 46.17 in the 400m notching a second place overall. Guevara will compete in the 400m at 5:50 p.m. and again at 6:50 p.m. in the 200m.

Madison Gibson notched a personal-best 54.95 in the 400m earning her a spot in tomorrow’s final. Gibson clocked the fourth-fastest qualifying time and will race at 5:55 p.m.

The men’s team earned five points in the pole vault after freshman Etamar Bhastekar climbed over the bar at a career-best 4.82m (15-9.75).

The team is currently in fifth place overall with 22 points, while the women’s team is in 10th place with 10 overall points.

The action continues tomorrow on the final day of the 2018 Conference USA Outdoor Championships with the field events starting at 2 p.m. and the running events at 5 p.m.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live updates and breaking news.

Mokrasova Captures Gold in the Heptathlon at the 2018 C-USA Outdoor Championships

HOUTSTON – Senior Lucia Mokrasova finally captured the elusive gold medal in the heptathlon by scoring 5,523 total points at the 2018 Conference USA Outdoor Championships on Friday at the Wendel D. Holloway Field in Houston.

The senior scored 2,159 in three events on the second day of competition. She opened the day with a fourth-place finish in the long jump, landing a mark of 5.57m (18-3.25) securing 720 points. The Slovakia native followed that by tallying 626 points in the javelin with a toss of 37.28m (124-1). Heading into the final event, the senior clocked a time of 2:20.78 in the 800m to garner 813 points.

Mokrasova is a three-time indoor pentathlon champion with two second-place finishes in the heptathlon, making this her first career gold medal in the event.

The senior secured 10 team points for the Miners, putting them tied for third place through three events.

On the men’s side, Antony Kosgei led the Orange and Blue in the 10,000m final by crossing the finish line with a winning time of 31:13.45, scoring 10 points. Kosgei was followed by freshmen Boaz Ronoh (31:23.53) and Cornelius Kapel (31:45.02) who finished fourth and seventh, respectively.

Together the trio distance runners tallied a total of 17 points for the men’s team, putting them second in the team standings.

The Miners return to track for day three on Saturday with the field events starting at 2 p.m. MT and the running events at 4:30 p.m.

The spotlight will be on sophomore Michael Saruni when he will compete in the 800m and 1,500m on Saturday along with teammate Jonah Koech. Saruni garnered national and world-wide attention when he broke the 800m NCAA Record at the Desert Heat Classic with a time of 1:43.25. Donavan Brazier (Texas A&M, 1:43.55) previously held the record which stood for two years.

Saruni and Koech hold the No. 1 and No. 2 spots in the conference in the 800m. Koech ranks first overall in the 1,500m, while Saruni will compete in his first of the season. Both will take the track at 4:30 p.m. in the 1,500m and will return in the 800m at 6:30 p.m.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live updates and breaking news.

Mokrasova Gains Early Lead After Day One at the C-USA Outdoor Championships

HOUSTON – UTEP senior Lucia Mokrasova left nothing to chance as she started her final heptathlon competition scoring 3,364 points leading the field of 15 athletes at the 2018 Conference USA Outdoor Championships on Thursday in Houston.

“She had a good day to open the competition,” UTEP head coach Mika Laaksonen said. “She really focused on her events and she could have a chance at national depending on how tomorrow goes.”

Mokrasova started the day clocking the fastest time in the 100m hurdles crossing the finish line at 14.42 and gaining 920 points. She followed that performance with a third-place finish in the high jump, leaping over the bar at 1.66m (5-5.25) tallying 806 points.

The Slovakia native won her second event in the shot put landing a mark of 13.28m (43-7), good for 746 points. In the final event of the first day, Mokrasova notched a time of 24.94 in the 200m winning her third event and registering 892 points.

Mokrasova established a 219-point lead over Middle Tennessee’s Qetuwrah Abdullah (3,145). She will return to the track on Friday at beginning with the long jump at 3:30 p.m. MT, followed by the javelin and 800m run.

Also competing on Friday will be newcomer Benjamin Coronado in the men’s hammer throw starting at 1:00 p.m. Coronado notched a personal-best 44.28m (145-3) at the UTEP Springtime.

Antony Kosgei, Cornelius Kapel and Boaz Ronoh will all compete in the 10,000m final at 7 p.m. Kosgei ranks fifth heading into the final with a season-best 30:20.92, while Ronoh and Kapel will compete in their first 10,000m race of the season.

The bulk of the Miners will compete on Saturday with field events beginning at 2 p.m. and running events at 4:30 p.m.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live updates and breaking news.

UTEP Track and Field Headed to Houston for the C-USA Outdoor Championships

The UTEP track and field team will close out the 2018 outdoor season with a trip to Houston, Texas, for the Conference USA Championships on May 10-13 hosted by Rice.

The Miners will compete against 13 different schools from across the league in four days. The Charlotte men’s team won the indoor title along with Middle Tennessee women’s team back in May.

Getting the action started will be senior Lucia Mokrasova in the heptathlon on Thursday at 1:45 p.m. Mokrasova has enjoyed a successful career with the Miners, holding the school record with 5,671 points. The Slovakia native will compete in the 100m hurdles, high jump, shot put and 200m on the first day. She will return to the track on Friday at 3:30 p.m. in the long jump, followed by the javelin and the 800m.

Mokrasova currently ranks second in the league with a season-high 5,160 points scored at the Texas Relays.

The men’s 10,000m final will feature three Miners on Friday at 7 p.m. Antony Kosgei will lead newcomers Boaz Ronoh and Cornelius Kapel in the charge. Kosgei ranks fifth heading into Friday’s final with a season-best 30:20.92, while Ronoah and Kapel will compete in their first 10,000m race.

Saturday will see the bulk of the Miners competing for a spot in Sunday’s finals.

The spotlight will be on sophomore Michael Saruni when he will compete in the 800m and 1,500m on Saturday along with teammate Jonah Koech. Saruni garnered national and world-wide attention when he broke the 800m NCAA Record at the Desert Heat Classic with a time of 1:43.25. Donavan Brazier (Texas A&M, 1:43.55) previously held the record which stood for two years.

Saruni and Koech hold the No. 1 and No. 2 spots in the conference in the 800m. Koech ranks first overall in the 1,500m, while Saruni will compete in his first of the season. Both will take the track at Saturday at 4:30 p.m. in the 1,500m and will return in the 800m at 6:30 p.m.

Senior Asa Guevara will compete in the 200m and 400m. The Trinidad and Tobago native set a personal best in the 200m with a time of 20.51. His time ranks eighth in program history and 15th in the nation. Guevara will race in the 400m at 5:25 p.m. and again at 7:25 p.m. in the 200m.

Newcomer Shakeem Smith entered the league for the Miners making an immediate impact in the hurdle events. Smith clocked a personal-best 13.97 in the 110m hurdles at the Desert Heat Classic. His time ranks fourth in school history and third in C-USA. The Bahamas native registered a season-best 400m time of 53.35 at the UTEP Springtime ranking him No. 4 in the league.

Smith will compete in the 110m hurdles at 5 p.m., followed by the 400m hurdles at 7 p.m.

In the field events, Donivan Ortega leads the Orange and Blue in the long jump setting a career-best 7.54m (24-9) at the UTEP Springtime. Ortega’s leap ranks him No. 5 on the C-USA list this season. The long jump competition will begin at 2:30 p.m.

On the women’s side, Rebecca Oshinbanjo will compete in the 100m hurdles where she ranks third in conference. The junior clocked a season-best 13.71 at the Texas Invitational to finish fourth overall. Oshinbajo will compete at 5:10 p.m. on Saturday.

Junior Dreshanae Rolle has steadily improved in the 400m hurdles. She started the season by clocking a personal best time of 1:00.00 at the Texas Relays. Rolle lowered that time down to 59.57 at the Desert Heat Classic taking third overall. Heading into the conference championships, Rolle ranks second in the event. She will race on Saturday at 7:10 p.m.

Mid-distance duo, Lilian Koech and Linda Cheruiyot will compete in the 800m and 1,500m over the weekend. Koech (2:07.06) ranks second in the league in the 800m followed by Cheruiyot (2:10.05) in the No. 3 spot. Koech also ranks No. 2 in C-USA in the 1,500m after clocking a season best time of 4:25.59 at the Texas Relays, taking third overall and the second collegiate athlete to cross the finish line.

The Miners will race at 4:45 in the 1,500m and will return for the 800m beginning at 6:40 p.m.

Sunday’s Final will begin with field events at 2 p.m. and running events starting at 5 p.m.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and UTEPTRACK on Instagram for live updates and breaking news.

Miners Garner C-USA Athlete of the Week

UTEP’s Lilian Koech and Michael Saruni were named Conference USA Track athletes of the week for their performances at the Desert Heat Classic, the league announced on Tuesday.

Saruni etched his name into track and field history when he clocked 1:43.25 and set the NCAA 800m record. Donavan Brazier (Texas A&M, 1:43.55) previously held the record for two years.

The Kenya native passed former teammate Emmanuel Korir (1:43.77) on the all-time best in program history.

This marks the sophomore’s second weekly award of the season. Saruni’s time ranks as the fastest in the world this year.

Koech notched her first C-USA weekly award of the season after running 2:07.06 in the 800m to take home gold. The junior notched her fifth top-five finish of the outdoor season and garnered her second sub-2:08 in the 800m this season. The Kenya native currently ranks second in the league in the 800m and second in the 1,500m.

The Miners will enjoy a week off from competition before heading to Houston, Texas, for the C-USA Outdoor Championships hosted by Rice on May 10-13.

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