The University of New Mexico track and field teams will have four indoor meets at home this winter, and both the men’s and women’s teams are hoping to show off some of their new additions. The UNM women’s team finished fourth at the Mountain West Conference Championship last season, while the men’s finished fifth.
The women's team lost school-record high jumper Jamari Drake to the University of Georgia and conference champion 3000m steeplechase veteran Charlotte Prouse to graduation; both finished top 10 in their respective events at last season’s NCAA National Championship and will be hard to replace.
Highlights in the incoming class this season include Lauren Fowler, a sprinter and long jumper out of Alta Sierra High School. Fowler has run consistently around 11.75 seconds in the 100m, which would have put her in seventh at last season’s Mountain West Conference Championship; her personal record of 11.63, which is her most recent time, would have gotten her fourth. All of her senior year long jump distances would have placed her in the top 10 at the championships as well, marking her as a potential threat in both events.
Also coming to join the UNM women is four-time NJCAA NCAA pole vault champion Carmen Villanueva Perez. Villanueva Perez will join Shannon Fritz, who finished fifth last season at the conference championships to form a dangerous vaulting duo.
The new additions to the men’s team are largely made up of sprinters, including Rivaldo Leacock, a transfer from the University of South Carolina who was a part of the ninth-best 4x400m relay team in the country. The only non-sprinter signee, distance runner Ethan Brouw, excels in the 800m and will bolster the mid-distance team for the Lobos.
Matthew Salcido is the sports editor at the Daily Lobo. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @baggyeyedguy