After opening the outdoor season at the TCU Invitational in Fort Worth, the track and field team returns to Elmer Gray Stadium to host its third-annual Wes Kittley Invitational meet.
At TCU the Wildcats were unable to crack the top three spots in any event against stiff Big-12 and SEC competition, but junior Ryan Cleary and senior Kenzie Mascorro led the way for ACU with fourth and fifth place finishes respectively. Cleary finished fourth in the 800-meter run with a time of 1:54.30 and Mascorro cleared a height of 12-feet, 10 inches, just short of career-best, but still good enough for fifth place.
Four different competitors also recorded personal bests as senior Lee-Andrew Bloomfield posted a time of 49.18 in the 400, and the throwing trio of juniors Josh Hunter and Ryan Simmons and sophomore McKennon Cecil also recorded career-best throws.
Head coach Lance Bingham said the team showed lots of potential in its first of seven meets this outdoor season.
“I thought overall we had a good effort, we had several personal records, Kenzie Mascorro had a great vault and nearly broke the school record,” Bingham said. “These early meets are a way to work out and get good training in. I think it puts us further down road in a good position as we continue to prepare for conference.”
This weekend’s home meet will be the first of three for the Wildcats this outdoor season and will feature Big-12 powerhouse Texas Tech, Oral Roberts, Tarleton State, Angelo State, West Texas A&M and a few others.
Wes Kittley, who the invitational is named after, coached ACU track and field for 16 seasons and has led the Red Raiders to 12 NCAA top-10 finishes since starting there in 2000.
Bingham said a home meet brings other challenges in the logistics of making the meet run, but is another chance for the team to progress.
“Embracing this idea of progressing and saying, let’s just keep getting better, keep progressing is important for us,” Bingham said. “Approaching this meet with the mindset of putting forth the best effort and being excellent for Christ is our goal.”
The meet will begin Friday with the decathlon, heptathlon, men’s and women’s 5K and 10K.