The track and field team finished its first meet of the season with individual successes, featuring almost a dozen team members with top-10 individual performances and multiple personal bests at the Texas A&M Invitational.
Diana Garcia-Munoz, sophomore from Phoenix, got the top finish for the Wildcats in second place in the 3,000-meters.
Munoz had an exceptional cross country season last fall as she was named an all Southland Conference selection, and her hard work is appearing to benefit her as a distance runner in the track season as well.
“It feels great knowing that I have a personal record for my first race, but I still have to keep in mind that conference for outdoor is more than three months away,” said Munoz. “Hopefully I can peak at the right time.”
Two other Wildcats made top-three finishes. Rosen Daniel, freshman from St. Lucia, took third in the 400-meter race during his first collegiate meet.
Kenzie Walker, sophomore nursing major from Abilene, took third in pole vault with a personal best of 12:9.5.
“I feel like I have a new confidence,” Walker said. “Being a freshman last year, I had no idea what to expect or who my competition would be, but this year I am familiar with how the meets work and some of the competitors.”
Alexandria Hackett and Daniel Block are two returners who had fifth-place finishes in the 800-meter race, while Sterlen Paul, sophomore international student from Trinidad, took eighth.
Victoria Gutierrez, freshman from Abilene, is another newcomer who had a top-10 finish in her first collegiate appearance.
With three disqualifications that would have resulted in top scores, the women’s team took ninth place with 21 total points while the men managed to finish in eighth with 24 points overall.
Individually, the Wildcats left many opponents with no chance. Collectively, the group has only had one organized practice, so the teams still have a lot to improve on before the Southland Indoor Championships take place.
The ‘Cats will be back on the track Jan. 30-31 at the Masked Rider Open in Lubbock.