UTEPs Jonah Koech (left)
Irving, Texas – Jonah Koech’s gold finish in the 1,500m run and silver in the 800m run at the Conference USA Championships was enough to garner the respect of Conference USA head coaches around the league for Male Track Performer of the Meet honors on Friday.
Koech took gold in the 1,500m run on his way to setting a C-USA meet record with a time of 3:43.39. The Kenya native used excellent strategy and utilized a devastating kick in the final 100 meters to surpass MTSU’s Eliud Rutto for glory.
The freshman returned to the track a little under two hours later and competed in the 800m run. This time it was Rutto holding off Koech for gold, but the mid-distance star took silver with a time of 1:50.00.
Koech earned UTEP a total of 18 team points with his first and second-place showings and he was also named Freshman of the Meet.
Koech will spring back into action next weekend at the NCAA West Preliminaries in the 800m run. He will need to finish in the top 12 of that event to advance to the NCAA Championships. He will have the sixth-fastest seed time (1:46.84) headed into the competition.