“I’d love to finish strong,” said Daven Russell, a fifth-year senior on the UVU track and field team. “I do have a few partially torn ligaments in my wrist and a bruised bone, but I still want to finish this strong.”

Russell’s injuries do not seem to be slowing him down as he enters the back end of his final season at UVU. At the UVU Collegiate Invitational, held March 29, Russell’s marks of 16.86m in the shotput and 57.49m in the hammer landed him first and third place, respectively.

“I’m just looking forward to the good conditions, the good competition and the good atmosphere,” said Russell, in anticipation of the final meets of the season. “I’d love to break 18m in the shot and I’d like to go over 60m in the hammer. I’d love to go out by double-qualifying in hammer and shot.”

Originally from Kanab, Utah, Russell was a two-time state champion in both the shot put and the discus before coming to UVU.  “I chose UVU because of Hector Perez, the throws coach.” Russell said, “I really liked his style of coaching and I really like him as a person.”

Perez was not the only coach that Russell spoke highly of.

“Coach Houle is a great coach. He just cares so much about his athletes and their success,” said Russell. “From what I can see he defines his own success by his athletes. He makes our victory his own, not the other way around.”

“You’re going to have great teammates to push you but at the end of the day you have to make your success your own priority,” Russell said, speaking to high school athletes that are considering attending UVU. “Success is in your own hands. It is based on what you do.”

Russell and the UVU track and field team head to the Utah Spring Classic held in Salt Lake City on April 13, after which they will embark on a schedule that takes them to various cities in California before heading home for the WAC Championship that will be held at UVU May 5-11.

Photo courtesy of UVU Athletics