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BYU’s relay team sets new school record at NCAA Championships

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EUGENE, Ore. — Five was the magic number for local runners Friday at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships.

Weber State’s Mike Hardy finished fifth in the steeplechase, BYU’s Shaquille Walker was fifth in the 800 meters and then BYU’s 4x400 relay team finished fifth in the last race at Hayward Field.

The performances capped a strong showing by local college runners at the NCAA Championships at the University of Oregon.

Along with Hardy’s fifth-place finish in the steeplechase with a time of 8:42.30, BYU’s Steve Flint finished 10th in the steeplechase with a time of 8:54.80.

Walker, who set a new 800-meter school record earlier this year with a 1:47.44, ran a 1:49.26 in Friday’s championships to finish fifth. Iowa State’s Edward Kemboi won with a time of 1:49.26.

In the final race of the four-day NCAA Championships involving Utah athletes, BYU’s 4x400 relay team of Mario Harper, Sean Adams, Jesse White and Walker finished fifth with a time of 3:05.56, breaking the old school record.

Korey Smith, Adams, Tyrell Yardley and Walker ran a 3:07.66 earlier this season.

Here’s a look at how some other Utah athletes fared Wednesday and Thursday during the NCAA Championships.

BYU’s Jason Witt finished third in the 10,000 meters with an impressive time of 29:04.58. Oregon runners were first 1-2 with Edward Cheserek winning in 28:58.92 and Eric Jenkins finishing second in 28:59.13.

Southern Utah’s Nate Jewkes finished 14th in 29:51.74 and BYU’s Spencer Gardner was 16th in 29:59.02.

BYU’s Anginae Monteverde set a new school record in the pole vault with a clearance of 14’01.25.

Utah State’s Chari Hawkins earned second-team All-American honors for the third straight year by finishing in 14th place in the heptathlon with a school-record total of 5,750.

Southern Utah’s Kayla Kovar finished 13th in the hammer throw.

The following athletes didn’t advance out of Wednesday and Thursday’s semifinals: BYU’s Braydon Bringhurst (pole vault), BYU’s Mark Carlson (400 hurdles), BYU’s Kelsey Brown-Gilbert (800 meters), Utah State’s Cole Lambourne (400 meters), BYU’s Shea Martinez (800 meters), UVU’s Trac Norris (steeplechase).