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BYU teammates Conner Mantz and Casey Clinger finish in top 12 in 5,000-meter run at U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials

BYU teammates Conner Mantz and Casey Clinger finished eighth and 12th, respectively, in the finals of the 5,000-meter run.

SHARE BYU teammates Conner Mantz and Casey Clinger finish in top 12 in 5,000-meter run at U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials
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Runners compete during the finals of men’s 5000-meter run at the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials Sunday, June 27, 2021, in Eugene, Ore.

Charlie Riedel, Associated Press

BYU teammates Conner Mantz and Casey Clinger finished eighth and 12th, respectively, in the finals of the 5,000-meter run Sunday morning on the final day of the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials in Eugene, Oregon.

Mantz took the lead late in the race hoping to avoid a mass sprint for the finish line, but it was too little too late in the hot, humid conditions. Mantz, the NCAA cross-country champion, was clocked in 13:32.69. Clinger’s time was 13:50.20.

The first three finishers — Paul Chelimo, Grant Fisher and Woody Kincaid — will advance to the Olympic Games. Chelimo won the race with a time of 13:26.32.

The race was originally scheduled for Saturday, but excessively hot temperatures forced postponement to Sunday, when conditions proved to be even worse. With temperatures climbing to 108 degrees on the track, most of the day’s events, scheduled for the afternoon and evening, were pushed back until late Sunday night. 

Almost two dozen athletes with Utah connections competed in these Olympic trials, but none made the team. The closest was Courtney Wayment, who, despite a performance that made her the ninth fastest American ever, finished fourth in the 3,000-meter steeplechase. Only the top three advance to the Olympics. Mantz produced Utah’s second best performance, placing fifth in the 10,000-meter run.