2004 MWC Outdoor Track & Field Championships Highlights
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics  
Release:  05/18/2004
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics

May 18, 2004


* The New Mexico men finished fourth for the fourth straight year, but recorded their second-highest score (94.5) under fourth-year head coach Matt Henry. Under Henry, the Lobo men have averaged 100.5 points at the MWC Outdoor Championships. UNM had scored an average of just 24 points at the outdoor conference championships in the seven years (1994-2000) prior to Henry's arrival.

* The Lobo men's team captured two event titles, the most since winning three events at the 1991 Western Athletic Conference Championships, had four athletes earn all-MWC honors and scored in 17 of the 19 events it had athletes entered in...the UNM women also won a pair of gold medals and earned all-conference honors in four events.


* Senior Mark Johnson (Fontana, Wisc.) earned all-MWC honors for the second time in the decathlon and fifth time in his career (indoor/outdoor) with his second place finish (7,325 pts.) on Thursday. The senior improved on his NCAA provisional qualifying score by 184 points and established career-bests in six of the ten events in the same week he completed his masters in business administration. Johnson's final race on Thursday, the 1,500, was the 160th event competition of his four-year career. He went on to compete in the long jump and pole vault on Friday.

* Sophomore teammate Dan Feltman finished fourth in the decathlon with an NCAA provisional qualifying and collegiate best score of 7,022. Feltman overcame a personal history of bad luck to score in the decathlon for the first time in his promising career. A blue chip decathlete from Deming (N.M.) High School, Feltman had yet to post a complete score in four multi-event competitions. As a true freshman, he was forced to pull out of the MWC indoor pentathlon due to injury, then, at the MWC decathlon in Albuquerque last spring, fell from third place after failing to keep his discus in bounds on three attempts. This year, Feltman was unable to clear a height in the pole vault during the MWC indoor heptathlon and once again scratched on all three discus attempts in three weeks ago in a decathlon competition at BYU. Like Johnson, he established career-bests in six of the ten events, including four on day two.


Mountain West Conference high jump champion Hank Baskett

* After runner-up finishes each of the past two years, junior Hank Baskett claimed his first high jump title, clearing a collegiate-best height of 6-11.00. Baskett, a 6-4, 215-pound wide receiver for the Lobo football team, jumped four inches higher than his nearest competitor to become the first Lobo to win the men's high jump since Kimani Harper's victory (7-00.50) at the 1994 Western Athletic Conference Championships. The former Clovis High School standout is the third Lobo to win a men's title at the MWC Championships, all under fourth-year head coach Matt Henry, and the fourth different high jump champion in men's program history.

* Junior Bridgid Isworth captured her first outdoor pole vault title after a second place finish a year ago. The native of Melbourne, Australia cleared 12-07.50 to extend the UNM women's streak to six years with at least one conference champion. Already the first indoor pole vault champion in UNM women's history, Isworth secured the program's first outdoor crown in the event with relative ease, despite competing in seven events in her first career heptathlon over the two previous days. Isworth, who finished second in the event on attempts last spring, defied her No. 5 seed to win by an easy four inches. She has earned all-MWC honors in each of her three pole vault competitions (indoor/outdoor).

* Junior Ben Ortega earned all-MWC honors for the fourth time outdoors with his third place finish in the 10,000 meters. Ortega crossed the line in 30:29.46, three seconds out of second place, in his first outdoor championship meet since 2002.

* Junior Veronica R. Gonzales took home all-conference laurels for the first time in her career with a third place throw of 146-06 in the javelin. The Carlsbad, N.M. native, who was sixth a year ago, is the first UNM woman to earn all-MWC honors in the event.

* Junior Jamie Fishencord broke teammate Amanda Barnes' recent school record in the discus by one inch with a mark of 151-09. Fishencord, who entered the meet ranked 14th, became the first UNM woman ever to score in the discus at the MWC Championships by placing seventh overall.

* Senior Sean Flaherty became the first Lobo to score in the 3,000-meter steeplechase with his eighth place (9:36.56) finish. Competing in his second career steeplechase race, Flaherty scored at the outdoor championships for the first time since taking eighth in the 800 as true freshman in 2001. He had competed in the 1,500 each of the past two years.


* Junior Matt Gonzales secured his first conference title with relative ease, winning the 5,000 meters with an MWC Outdoor Championships record time of 14:12.59, nearly 11 seconds faster than the previous meet standard and almost 14 seconds ahead of his nearest competitor on Saturday. Gonzales earned all-MWC honors for the fourth time in his career and finished as the Lobos' high-point man with 15 points after coming back to place fourth in the 1,500 on the final day. Gonzales is the third outdoor 5,000m champion in UNM men's history, joining Jeremy Vehar (1997) and Bill Managan (1989).

* Junior Amanda Barnes solidified her place as the best women's shot put competitor in UNM history, claiming her second straight league title and increasing her own school record with a mark of 50-11.00. Her mark was a full 18 inches beyond her previous best and marked the first time she surpassed the 50-foot mark in her career. Barnes and the late Darren Crawford (1989-90) are the only back-to-back conference shot put champions in the history of the UNM men's and women's programs.

* Junior Jacquelyne Gallegos capped her stellar comeback season from a near career-ending auto accident, claiming all-conference honors for the first time in her career with a third place in the 1,500. Gallegos, who missed virtually all of 2003 as she recovered from a broken back and pelvis, finished with a time of 4:31.94, just 1.7 seconds shy of second place. She is the first Lobo to earn all-MWC honors in the event and the only UNM woman to score after placing fifth as a true freshman in 2002.

* Senior Chris Garofola time of 14.48 in the 110-meter hurdles was the best by a Lobo in over a decade and good for fifth place. Garofola also finished fourth in the 100 (10.87) and helped the 4x100 (41.38) relay team to a fourth place finish, before an injury forced him out of the 200 and 4x400 relay finals.

* Junior Willie Yuen's enjoyed the highest MWC finish of his career by taking fourth place in the triple jump (47-03.75)...sophomore Kimilia Davis became the first UNM woman to score in the 200 and 400 since Arline Smith won both events in 2001...Davis also led the Lobo 4x400m relay team to its best finish (5th) since 2000 (2nd)...junior Cameron Clarke (7th) scored in the 1,500 for the third straight year while fellow junior Nick Martinez scored for the first time in his career by placing sixth in the 5,000.

NCAA Midwest Regional Qualifiers

(12 in 5 men's and 4 women's events)

Sr. Jason Barkemeyer (Belen, N.M.)

Shot Put * 56-09.50 * UTEP Springtime Invitational - El Paso, Texas (March 27)

Discus * 173-02 * Texas Relays - Austin, Texas (April 2)

Jr. Amanda Barnes (Carlsbad, N.M.)

Shot Put * 50-11.00 * MWC Championships - Las Vegas, Nev. (May 15)

Jr. Hank Baskett (Clovis, N.M.)

High Jump * 6-11.00 * MWC Championships - Las Vegas, Nev. (May 14)

Fr. Kayla Brown (Bloomfield, N.M.)

Javelin * 142-05 * Willie Willams Classic - Tucscon, Ariz. (March 19)

Fr. Robert Caldwell (Socorro, N.M.)

Pole Vault * 16-04.75 * NMSU Invitational - Las Cruces, N.M. (April 3)

Jr. Cameron Clarke (Albuquerque, N.M.)

5,000m * 14:13.90 * Mt. SAC Relays - Walnut, Calif. (April 16)

Jr. Jamie Fishencord (Littleton, Colo.)

Hammer * 179-04 * Don Kirby Invitational - Albuquerque, N.M. (May 1)

Jr. Matt Gonzales (Santa Fe, N.M.)

5,000m * 13:44.52 * Mt. SAC Relays - Walnut, Calif. (April 16)

Jr. Veronica R. Gonzales (Carlsbad, N.M.)

Javelin * 152-01 * Don Kirby Invitational - Albuquerque, N.M. (May 1)

Jr. Bridgid Isworth (Melbourne, Australia)

Pole Vault * 12-07.50 * MWC Championships - Las Vegas, Nev. (May 15)

Sr. Mark Johnson (Fontana, Wisc.)

Pole Vault * 16-04.75 * Texas Relays (decathlon) - Austin, Texas (April 1)

Jr. Derek Mackel (Albuquerque, N.M.)

Pole Vault * 16-04.75 * Mesa Classic - Mesa, Ariz. (April 9)