COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Air Force junior Shelley Spires and senior Kyle Pater were honored by the Mountain West this afternoon (Jan. 17), as the pair swept the conference’s Indoor Field Athlete of the Week awards. Spires was received the women’s weekly honor for the second time in as many weeks – and the fourth time in her career – while Pater earned the first men’s honor of his career.
Spires made history on Friday, Jan. 13, as she became the first Air Force female in program history to break the six-foot bar in the high jump. Registering a career-best clearance of 6’0”, Spires won the Potts Indoor Invitational by over two inches, set the facility standard at Colorado’s Indoor Practice Facility, and improved her own Academy record by three-quarters of an inch. A native of Mobile, Ala., Spires was perfect of first-attempt clearances during her run to six feet (five-of-five). The junior, who is currently ranked sixth in the NCAA, also debuted in the Mountain West history book following that meet, as her 6’0” clearance is tied for fourth on the conference’s all-time list.
Pater, a native of San Diego, Calif., posted a career-best clearance of 17’11” to win the pole vault at the Potts Indoor Invitational. Improving his own personal-best height by two inches, the senior won the event by two feet and set the facility standard at the IPF. With the seventh-best clearance in Academy history, Pater is currently ranked first in the Mountain West and third in the NCAA so far this season.
The pair, who shared the conference’s Jan. 17 award with Colorado State’s Cole Rockhold (men’s track athlete of the week) and Lorenda Holston (women’s track athlete of the week), return to action this weekend, when the Falcons host the 27th-annual Air Force Invitational on Jan. 19-21.