Austin, Texas – Two budding stars in the UTEP track and field program displayed their skilled prowess in front of a crowd of 21,006 fans at the Mike A. Myers Stadium on day four of the 89th Clyde Littlefield Relays. Tobi Amusan took gold in the 100m hurdles and Jonah Koech unleashed a dagger finish to take gold in the mile run.
“It’s great to have two freshman athletes perform at this level at this big of a meet,” head coach Mika Laaksonen said. “We’re really happy to have both of these athletes. They both had outstanding performances today.”
Amusan, who ran the fastest 100m hurdle time in the preliminaries on Friday, shaved off .15 seconds off her time in the prelims and clocked a time of 13.12 to edge Payton Stumbaugh (13.18) of Arkansas.
Koech wowed the crowd by unleashing a lethal finish over the last 200m to take gold in the mile with a time of 4:00.82. It was his second race in two days, but the freshman showed no ill effects. Koech’s mile time converts to a 1,500m run time of 3:43.05, which would rank him No. 1 in the country. The mile is not frequently run in the outdoor season, thus the reference to the conversion of the 1,500m run.
“The Texas Relays was pretty productive for us,” Laaksonen said. “We started on Wednesday with Lucia (Mokrasova), and she got a national qualifying mark and Rasmus (Maukonen) threw well for us on Fridayand then obviously our two athletes today.
“We still have some work left to do on our relays. We might have some health issues and we have a couple things we can clean up before conference comes around.”
The Miners will return to action next weekend at the Sun Angel Classic in Tempe, Ariz.