Mersal, Mitchem to Represent UW at NCAA Track & Field Championships
* University of Wyoming press release
LARAMIE -- Kareem Mersal and Katelyn Mitchem will represent the University of Wyoming Track & Field Teams as they head to Austin, Texas and Mike A. Myers Stadium for the 2023 NCAA Track & Field National Championships set to take place Wednesday through Saturday of this week.
Mersal will compete in the Long Jump on Day One of the Championships with the finals of the Long Jump slated for 8PM Central time. Mersal qualified in 12th at the NCAA West First Rounds and is back at the Championships for the second straight year as he earned second-team All American status with his performance in 2022, finishing in 16th place out of 24. Mersal set his personal-best jump at the 2023 Mountain West Championships of 25-8.25 which is a record in the event at Wyoming.
Associate Head Coach Quincy Howe said this about Mersal. “It’s always great to see someone who does all the right things make it a step closer to their ultimate goals. It is no easy feet and being back there for a second consecutive year has moved it into the realm of expectation rather than hope. Experience is always a great teacher and for Kareem to be back at the pinnacle of our sport in the NCAA again, the experience that he has garnered will hopefully be another puzzle piece towards earning 1st team all American status.”
Mitchem will race in the semifinals of the 3000M Steeplechase on Thursday at 8:02. In two heats of 12 the Steeplechase will advance the top five runners from each heat and the next two fastest times overall. The finals are set to be ran at 8:24 on Saturday evening.
Mitchem began her season receiving the Elite 90 Award at the 2022 Cross Country Championships. Mitchem earned the award with her perfect GPA and performance getting to the NCAA Championships as an individual. Mitchem placed in fifth at the MW Championships and then an impressive 14th place at the West Regional to earn her spot and take 143rd in Stillwater at the Championships.
Her season continued from there. Mitchem set two school records during the indoor season in the 800 and the Mile. The senior from Colorado took two podium finished at the MW Indoor Conference Championships, second in the Mile and third in the 800. That success continued during the outdoor season with school records set in the 1500, 3000M Steeplechase and the 5000, all followed by a second-place finish at conference and a spot in the NCAA Championships. Mitchem qualified in 11th at the NCAA West First Rounds.
Head Cross Country Coach Scott Dahlberg said. “Katelyn has put in a tremendous amount of work in many ways over her career. She’s been turning in some incredible workouts in training, but she’s also been fine tuning her mental prep heading into races. Her work ethic has always been there, but it’s been so fun watching her gain confidence over the years and putting the pieces together at the bigger races. The more times she’s had those positive experiences in races, the more she has proven to herself she’s capable of accomplishing the goals she’s had. She’s not only made those goals a reality for herself but has also made a huge Impact on her teammates as to what’s possible for them as individuals and as a team moving forward.”
This will be the third consecutive season in which the Brown & Gold will be represented at the NCAA Championships. Nathan Reid and Mersal in 2022 and Colton Paller in 2021. Paller earned a first team All American nod in 2021 in the Discus with Reid finishing in 23rd in 22.
Head Track & Field Coach Bryan Berryhill added. “We are proud of the work Katelyn and Kareem have put in this year to qualify for the NCAA Finals in Austin. This is the third straight year we will have student-athletes represented at the NCAA Championships, and that is always one of our goals to have the brown and gold represented at the highest level. This gives us momentum going into next year, where we will look to continue the streak of qualifying Cowboys and Cowgirls to the NCAA’s.”
Myers Stadium boasts a track that is a nine-lane European oval featuring a wider turn radius than traditional tracks to allow for more speed in the turns. Field event performers enjoy the all-inclusive site that is equipped with dual jump lanes, several throwing circles and a pair of high jump aprons. The stadium seats more than 20,000 spectators. Each day the Championships will be live on ESPN2 while fans can tune into each individual event on ESPN+ to ensure they don’t miss a second of the action from each event.
Stay up to date on Wyoming Track & Field by following @wyo_track on Twitter.
From Bison to Triceratops - All of Wyoming's Official Things
- From Bison to Triceratops - All of Wyoming's Official Things