Opening weekend for track and field saw 15 Wildcats turn in personal bests at the Texas A&M Invitational in College Station on Saturday, Jan. 18. The ten-team meet included powerhouses such as Baylor, TCU and Texas State.
Junior Daniel Block’s time of 1:52.67 in the 800-meters finished second only to Texas A&M’s Hector Hernandez (1:51.93). Block contributed eight points to the men’s group total of 30, helping the ‘Cats to a seventh place tie with Louisiana Tech. The women’s team earned nine points to finish 10th overall at the Aggies’ McFerrin Athletic Center Indoor Track.
ACU Freshman Ramesheon Marine posted the second-fastest 60-meter hurdle time in school history with an 8.90, behind junior Lexus Williams’ 8.71 from 2012. Other top performers include weight throwers sophomore Jelani Rainey and senior Aaron Bynum, who threw for distances of 17.04m (55-11) and 15.95m (52-4), respectively. This places them at seventh and ninth on the ACU’s all-time top-10 indoor performance list. Senior Baptiste Kerjean placed fourth in the weight throw with a distance of 18.18m, while graduate student Shalaina Lakey and junior Lauren Hartwick both turned in top-10 performances in the women’s event.
In Lubbock, freshman Kenzie Walker placed third in the women’s pole vault at the Texas Tech Indoor Open with a personal best of 3.50m.
The number of top performances this weekend made a statement for the Wildcats, who hope to make a name for themselves in Div. 1.
“We hope to turn a couple heads and gain some respect from the bigger schools,” said senior Erik Forrister. “But we also hope they notice the way we compete, representing our school, our families, and most importantly, Christ.”
Saturday’s meet led off a lineup of incredible competition throughout the Wildcats’ spring season. The 2014 schedule includes meets at the University of Oklahoma, Texas Tech, the University of New Mexico and the University of Texas, arguably making track and field’s season one of the toughest in ACU athletics this year. But coaches and players feel prepared and welcome the challenge.
“There are no secret formulas in track and field, consistent training is the only way to be successful,” said assistant coach Drew Graham. “The whole team, no matter the event group have been working harder than they ever have before, both in the weight room and on the track for the past six months. This should put them in good stead for a successful season.”
The Wildcats compete again this Saturday, Jan. 25 at the Oklahoma Invitational in Norman, Okla.