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The UTEP track and field team kicked off the indoor season at the Cherry and Silver Invitational in the Albuquerque Convention Center on Friday.
The Miners took the track for the first time this year and set the bar high for the rest of the season.
On the men’s side there were five Miners representing the Orange and Blue in the 600m. Abiola Onakoya was the second collegiate runner to cross the finish line with a personal-best time of 1:19.71. El Paso native Daniel Tarango took first in the second heat of the night, clocking in a time of 1:21.77. The freshman finished fifth out of 12 runners.
Manuel Lopez took seventh place with a time of 1:23.11, while A-Shawni Mitchell registered a time of 1:24.10 and freshman Tommy McCoy recorded a time of 1:27.45 in the event.
Kristian Dillard posted a time of 51.14 as the top-Miner finisher in the men’s 400m, teammate Kyron Joseph also competed in the indoor 400m for the first time and set a time of 51.59.
Texas transfer Mark Jackson was the men’s top finisher in the 200m clocking in a time of 22.04.
On the field, Demetris Elia claimed silver in the weight throw with a personal-best 18.31m (60-01.00). The sophomores registered the 49th-best mark in the nation in the event, thus far. Alejandro Maldonado also ended the night on a high note setting a personal best in the pole vault with a mark of 4.20m (13-09.25).
The women’s team was led by Yolanda Suggs, who clocked in an indoor personal best of 24.61 in the 200m earning fourth place overall.
Senior Mariah Bowers sprinted out of the competition and was the top finisher of the first heat of the 600m. The distance runner finished fourth out of 18 runners and recorded a time of 1:38.43 in the event.
On the field, newcomer Nickevea Wilson jumped an indoor personal-best mark of 5.65m (18-06.50) in the long jump and was eighth overall.
Taylor Gunn and Krystal Fleming were the two Miners, who wore the Orange and Blue in the women’s weight throw and claimed 15th and 16th place with tosses of 13.31m (43-08.00) and 13.25m (43-05.75), respectively.
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