Jan. 24, 2009
EL PASO, Texas - The UTEP track and field teams claimed three titles as they opened the 2009 indoor season at the Texas Tech Invitational on Saturday at the Athletic Center.
"Our teams had a good day today," head coach Bob Kitchens said. "It was a good first meet, we find ourselves at this point every year trying to find out where we're at. We've got a good idea of where we're at and now we've got to go back and work on what we've got to improve."
The 19th ranked women's team picked up gold in the mile as Jepchirchir Kigen clocked in at 5:05.95, Megan Chojnacki was seventh with a time of 5:34.48.
Dimitrios Fylladitakis recorded NCAA provisional marks on his way to claiming the crown in the weight throw with a distance of 20.28 meters (66-06 1⁄2). Hans Eriksson took the second place in the stand for the Miners with a throw of 18.40 (60-04 1/2) for silver.
Dominic Tanui, currently ranked 11th in the nation in the 800 meter, took first in the event with a time of 1:54.17. Aggrey Chirchir finished second, 1:54.73.
The women were boosted by a group of newcomers that gave UTEP three second place finishes. All-American Shalaiyah Sommerville, the only returnee to the women's 4 x 400 meter relay team, led Kendra Chambers, Siobhian Crain and Endurance Abinuwa to silver with a time of 3:46.28.
Abinuwa gave the Miners a second silver medal with a 24.42 run in the 200 meters. Kathya Garcia picked up another silver crown for the Miners in the 3,000 meter run clocking in at 10:00.97. Terran Alexander's mark of 16.60 meters in the weight throw was enough for a second place. Alexander finished 19th in the shot put.
Nicodemus Ng'etich took fourth in the mile for the men with a time of 4:09.60. Ronald Arajs had the second best time in the 55 meter relays, 6.42, but did not participate in the finals. Omololu Ogunlana finished 11th in the event.
The Miners will travel to Lincoln, Neb., when they return to action at the Frank Sevigne-Husker Invitational on February 6-7.