University of Utah senior distance runner Jessica Sams runs the 3000 meter run as The University of Utah and Weber State host the Utah Spring Classic at the McCarthey Family Track and Field Complex in Salt Lake City, UT on Friday April 06, 2018. (Photo by Curtis Lin/ Daily Utah Chronicle)

It was a successful weekend for the University of Utah Track and Field. Traveling to southern California, the team competed in both the Mt. SAC Relays and the Long Beach State Invite.

All-American Grayson Murphy competed in the 10,000-meter race at the Mt. SAC meet. Murphy placed fifth in the event with a time of 33:17.85, making her the new school record holder in the event. She beat the previous school record by 11 seconds.

According to Murphy, she and the staff did not decide she would participate until 12:30 p.m., with the race time set for nine at night. When she got to the starting line, she was not nervous because it was not her main event and so the pressure was minimal.

“[The record] was one of the ones I wanted to add to my school records, it was one of my goals this season so I am really glad I got out there and got it done,” Murphy said.

Louise Mercer also competed in the 10,000-meter. In her first time running the event, she placed 16th in the second section of the race with a time of 35:29.77, allowing Mercer to move into ninth place in school history.

In the 3,000-meter race, both Dakota Grossman and Bella Williams ran for the team. Grossman placed ninth in the second session and Williams took 13th in the first session. Grossman set a new personal best with this race and moved her into ninth in school history while Williams moved up to the 10th in school history.

In the second day of competition at Mt. SAC, Jessica Sams led the Utes. Sams competed in the 5,000-meter race where she took fourth place. In the Open-A race, she finished with a time of 16:14.44, setting a new personal record and moving into fourth place in school history. Head coach Kyle Kepler says that the performance Sams had is nothing new to him.

“It’s been there, you see it in practice. She knows she can do it but it’s just a matter of getting in the right race and piercing it all together and that is flat out the best race she has ever ran, probably in her entire life,” Kepler said.

Also competing in the 5K was Aubrey Argyle and Trina Moreno. Argyle finished in 15th place while Moreno placed 21st.

Sarah Newton led the Utes in the 800-meter race where she placed fourth. Grace Englund and Caitlin Faust also ran placing 9th and 14th respectively.

All three Utes who competed in the 1,500-race placed within the top 15. Hannah McInturff was the first Ute to cross the finish line, taking 9th. She was quickly followed by Megan Perkins-Killian in 11th and Nicole Griffiths in 14th.

The weekend was capped off when the 4×100 team took third place at the LBS Invite. The team consisting of Alissa Atisme, Englund, Jackie Martin and Faust ran a time of 3:41.15.

The Utes will once again split up this coming weekend. Some of the team will head down south to compete at the Robison Invitational hosted by BYU. Other members of the team will go to Drake University to compete in the Drake Relays. Both meets will begin on Friday, April 27th and end on Saturday, April 28th.


Sammy Mora
Sammy Mora is currently in her second year of writing for The Daily Utah Chronicle. Before writing here, Sammy was a four year staff member of her high school newspaper The Speaking Eagle where she reached the level of sports editor.


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