Lobo Track Hosting Don Kirby Tailwind Open with Eye on Postseason
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics  
Release:  04/30/2014

Don Kirby Tailwind Open — Albuquerque, N.M.

When: Friday, May 2
Where: Great Friends of University of New Mexico Track & Field Stadium in Albuquerque
Live Results: LiveRunningResults.com

With a possible Mountain West sweep upcoming, the Lobos are hoping there is no place like home.

The University of Mexico track and field team is hosting the Don Kirby Tailwind Open Friday as it looks to prepare for the Mountain West Outdoor Championships — and a potential sweep of the conference track and field titles — in two weeks.

The Lobos, winners of the MW indoor championships and cross-country championships, are primed for another title run and will try to gain some extra experience at their home meet, which has proven to be one of their most productive meets of the year.

“If you look at our history, some of our best jumps in the history of the school have come at our home meet,” New Mexico head coach Joe Franklin said. “And that’s what we expect this weekend — to have the people jumping and sprinting and vaulting compete well and hard and prepare to win a conference championship.”

The Lobos have seen considerable success at home, with some of the school’s top marks in the short sprints, jumps and the pole vault coming in Albuquerque.

K. Spencer  
Kendall Spencer  

And UNM hopes to continue that trend and record improvement in what Franklin calls the Lobos’ last tune up before defending their conference crowns.

Headlining New Mexico’s homestand are the cherry and silver’s top-notch jumpers, including MW indoor titlists Kendall Spencer, Warrick Campbell and Aasha Marler.

Spencer launched his best long-jump mark of his career at the 2012 edition of the Don Kirby Tailwind, leaping 26 feet, 8 ¼ inches. He’s consistently performed well in Albuquerque and will look to improve on his current season best of 24-11.

Campbell is another Lobo who has seen success at home, as the triple jumper notched his career-best distance (52 feet) at the Albuquerque Convention Center indoors. This weekend is Campbell’s first triple-jump action outdoors.

Marler, coming in with outdoor bests of 19-4 ¼ in the long jump and 40 ½ in the triple jump, has been trending up in 2014, capturing the school’s indoor long jump record in February.

The Lobos will also look to Reneilwe Aphane, Yannick Roggatz and Jannell Hadnot — all of whom have recorded jumps that rank top five in the MW — and Jadon Boatright in the horizontal jumps.

The women’s pole vaulter will also be striving for some final improvements Friday, with the top two finishers at the MW indoor meet, individual champion Margo Tucker and runner-up Annie Stirling, competing.

Tucker leads the team with a clearance of 12-7 ½, but holds the school record of 13-3 ¾, while Stirling is second on the team with a mark of 12-6. Both, along with Emily Heisler and Nathalie Busk, can vie for the conference title outdoors.

  Margo Tucker
  Margo Tucker

Elsewhere on the field, Markus Miller is entered in high jump, Logan Pflibsen (fourth in the MW) is entered in the pole vault and the Lobos’ javelin contingent of Richard York (tops in the MW), Marcus Simon (sixth) and Nik Aston (seventh) will take aim.

On the track, the Lobos will continue to look for strong times with the some of the distance runners traveling to Sunday’s Payton Jordan Invitational.

For the women, athletes competing in the sprints and hurdles at the Don Kirby Tailwind include Brittany Myricks, Kayla Fisher-Taylor and Peri Moran in the short sprints and Haley Sanner, Zoe Howell and Lucretia Vigil in the 400.

The women will also compete Holly Van Grinsven, Samantha Bowe and Christina Clark in the hurdles.

The men will look toward Ridge Jones, Charles Lewis and Chris Kline in the sprints, with Mustafa Mudada and Cheyne Dorsey in the the 400 hurdles.

Additionally, New Mexico have entered a handful of athletes in the middle-distance and distance events, including Sophia Torres, Stephanie Mladinich, Ashlee Smalley and Adriana Lopez for the women and Gabe Aragon, JP Cordova and Jake Shelley for the men.

Currently, the Lobo women check in at third in the Women's Mountain Regional Index that was released by the U.S. Track and Field/Cross Country Coaches Association on Tuesday. The Lobo men are ranked fourth in the men's version of the same index. Nationally, the USTFCCCA tabbed the UNM men 30th.

Live results for the Don Kirby Tailwind can be found at LiveRunningResults.com. Also, check back at GoLobos.com Friday night for a recap and results.