UTEP to host C-USA Track and Field Championships beginning on May 11

UTEP+Track+and+Field+has+not+won+the+C-USA+men%E2%80%99s+title+since+2013.+The+women+are+looking+to+regain+their+2015+championship+title%2C+lost+to+Rice+in+2016.
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UTEP to host C-USA Track and Field Championships beginning on May 11

UTEP Track and Field has not won the C-USA men’s title since 2013. The women are looking to regain their 2015 championship title, lost to Rice in 2016.

UTEP Track and Field has not won the C-USA men’s title since 2013. The women are looking to regain their 2015 championship title, lost to Rice in 2016.

File Photo The Prospector

UTEP Track and Field has not won the C-USA men’s title since 2013. The women are looking to regain their 2015 championship title, lost to Rice in 2016.

File Photo The Prospector

File Photo The Prospector

UTEP Track and Field has not won the C-USA men’s title since 2013. The women are looking to regain their 2015 championship title, lost to Rice in 2016.

Mike Flores, Staff Reporter

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After a successful outdoor track and field season for both the UTEP men and women’s team, it’s time for the Conference-USA Outdoor Championships, which begin May 11 and wrap up on May 14 in El Paso, Texas.

Athletes from the UTEP men’s team to watch going into the C-USA Outdoor Championships are the duo of two freshman runners, Emmanuel Korir and Michael Saruni, as well as  sophomore Jonah Koech.

Other participants who will perform in El Paso for the post-season runs will include runners that have had notable years throughout the season, such as Eliud Rutto from MTSU, Cra’vorkian Carson from Southern Mississippi, Tom Nobles from Charlotte, Patrick Prince coming out of UTSA and many more track and field performers who have each earned C-USA Athletes of the Week honors this season.

Sophomore Tobi Amusan is one of the UTEP female runners to keep an eye on, as she was recently named UTEP’s Athlete of the Year, alongside former running back Aaron Jones.

Some highlighted female runners coming to the Sun City will be Syd Howells (UTSA) and Abike Egbeniyi (MTSU) who has two C-USA Athlete of the Week honors, and her teammate Agnes Abu, who also has been named C-USA Athlete of the Week twice this season.

Last season at the C-USA Outdoors Championships, held in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, the men’s Western Kentucky team was crowned first place with a team score of 148. Middle Tennessee State (123) and UTSA (113) rounded out the top three last year.

UTEP men’s track finished in the sixth spot with a score of 74. The Miners beat Rice, FIU, Southern Mississippi and Louisiana Tech.

The lone first-place winner for UTEP last year was the then freshman Jonah Koech in the 1500-meter finals, with his time of 3:43.39.

The last time UTEP men’s team took home the championship was in 2013, when they scored 166.5 as a team.

On the women’s side last year, Rice took the crown with their score of 122. MTSU (119.5), WKU (115.5) and UTEP, with a final score of 91, were the top four schools last season.

There were five events that saw a UTEP athlete finish in first place in last year’s Outdoor Championships—and two belonged to Tobi Amusan, who was a freshman last season. Amusan beat all her competitors in the 200-meter finals (23.27) and in the 100 hurdle finals (13.06).

Lucia Mokrasova, a sophomore last year, also placed first in two events; the overall winner of the women’s heptathlon and the women’s heptathlon shot put with a score of 741.

Yanique Bennett, a junior at UTEP last year, finished first in the 400 hurdle preliminaries with her time of 1:00.09.

At the last event for the Miners, the Brutus Hamilton Challenge in Berkeley, California, they finished their regular season with 11 first-place finishers in 25 events and almost saw Korir break an NCAA outdoor record in the 800-meter race, as he finished just .18 seconds away from achieving the goal.

UTEP will get a much-needed week off before the conference tournament begins, as they have competed for three straight weeks.

When the invitational opens the doors on Thursday, May 4, the first event of the day will be the heptathlon at 2:45 p.m., quickly followed up with the decathlon event at 3:15 for the only two competitions on day one.

On day two at 10 a.m., the women’s hammer throw kicks off the Friday slate. The other competitions set to take place on Friday are the men’s hammer throw, both decathlon and heptathlon events, the men’s 800-meter heptathlon, 10,000-meter women’s competition and the 1,500-meter decathlon, and finally finishing day two with the 10,000-meter men’s event at 9 p.m.

On May 13, the field events will start at 1 p.m. and end at 6:30 p.m. But running events will kick off at 5 p.m. and go all the way to the 3,000 steeplechase men’s final at 9:20 p.m.

To end the C-USA Championships on Sunday—all of the high jumps, triple jumps, vault events, shot put competitions, relays and hurdles will be completed.

At the conclusion of the weekend-long tournament, the top three finishers in each event will earn all-conference honors with first team accolades going to the winners. Also, the runners coming in second place in their respective events will receive second-team honors and the same goes for the third place athletes who will get third-team awards.

Every award will be announced and voted for, including Coach of the Year in C-USA for both the women’s and men’s team. The first and second-place universities will be given a trophy, and the first-place squad will earn awards.

Additionally, all of the C-USA coaches will get together and reward both a women and men’s competitor for Track Athlete of the Year and Field Athlete of the Year.

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