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Peterson High Jump Title Highlights Idaho Showing At Championships

Katelyn Peterson brought home the Big Sky title for the Vandals in the high jump. (Photo: Idaho) Katelyn Peterson brought home the Big Sky title for the Vandals in the high jump. (Photo: Idaho)

by Idaho Athletics

CHENEY, Wash.—Junior Katelyn Peterson highlighted Idaho's final day at the Big Sky Championships on Saturday. Peterson won the women's high jump, becoming the Vandals' first women's outdoor Big Sky Champion since 1995.

Peterson passed on the opening height of 1.52m, joining the fray at 1.62m. The Fairfield, Idaho native, cleared the bar in her first attempt at all four heights. Peterson cleared the final height of 1.73m (5-08) with ease, pressuring North Dakota's Rochelle Robb and Portland State's Cecelia Jackson. The remaining field was unable to match Peterson in three attempts, putting her on top of the podium.

Her mark set a new conference and individual season-best. She entered the meet with a Big Sky-best of 1.71m (5-07.25). Peterson adds to her gold-medal collection, previously winning indoor and outdoor gold at the 2014 Western Athletic Conference Championships. Saturday's win marked the first women's outdoor high jump gold for Idaho since Stacey Asplund in 1989.

“[Today] there was really good competition all the way up to the end,” Peterson said. “I just tried to focus on each height and process, not the end result. It was a really good day to jump and I am happy with the results.”

Freshman Taylor John Wilson scored in the men's javelin. His third throw of 57.41m (188-04) marked a new personal record, placing him seventh in the field. Senior Emmanuel Panchol finished 13th in the men's triple jump. He scored a best distance of 13.44m (44-01.25). Juan Medina-Cuenca posted a heave of 14.57m (47-09.75) in the men's shot put, placing 12th.

“I thought the team came out and competed well,” Director of Track & Field Tim Cawley explained. “There was a few areas where we might have been able to come out a little stronger, but you are always going to have those meets. Overall I thought the team fought really hard.”

Sophomore Kolcie Bates started the day for the Vandals in the women's hammer throw. She topped out at 44.91m (147-04). Bates continued in the women's discus along with teammate Adara Winder. She finished 16th with a throw of 41.38m (135-09), while Winder hit a distance of 39.26m (128-10). Faith Eruwa represented well in the women's triple jump. She launched a distance of 11.36m (37-03.25), placing ninth.

Idaho started the track events with the women's 1500m. Senior Holly Stanton ran with the lead pack for the first 800m but was unable to keep the pace. She finished 11th with a time of 4:37.74, setting a new personal record. Teammate Ally Ginther ran a 4:42.85, good for 15th. Sacramento State's Chloe Berlioux set a new Roos Field record for the event with a time of 4:24.44.

Freshman Christopher Black set a new personal record in the men's 1500m. He finished 19th with a time of 4:02.54.

“We got a lot of experience [this season],” Cawley said of his young core of athletes. “It is a different conference than the WAC. Even our upperclassmen have seen the difference. We have a lot of upperclassmen redshirting and we should be in a good situation next year to really come in and do some [good] things.”

Idaho finished in 11th in women's and 12th in the men's point totals. The women closed the meet with 30 points, while the men recorded nine points over the Vandals' two days of competition.

Sacramento State won the women's championship. The Hornets led the women's standings with 145.90 points .The men's title was split between Sacramento State and Northern Arizona each with 157 points. Montana State finished second in the women's standings with 142.20 points.

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