Track and Field Teams Set for Conference USA Indoor Championships
Feb. 24, 2005
Memphis, Tenn. - After solid performances throughout the first part of the season, the University of Memphis track and field teams are now set for the culminating event of the indoor season, the Conference USA Indoor Championships, which will be held Friday and Saturday, February 25-26 at the Yeoman Fieldhouse on the campus of the University of Houston.
With the great success of numerous athletes in the preceding meets, the U of M squads head south with hopes of bringing home several individual event titles.
Leading the way for the Tigers will be seniors Janon Busby and Daniel Kiss, while junior Gail Lee is the most promising threat for the Lady Tigers. Busby, who has ranked atop the conference in the triple jump throughout the season, has a season-best effort of 51-00.25" (15.55m) and takes an advantage of almost two feet over his nearest competitor into the conference meet. He also has a solid chance to score in the high jump, where he currently is tied for fifth in the rankings with a leap of 6-06.00" (1.98m).
Kiss, the U of M's lone competitor in the 60m hurdles, has been in the C-USA mix in the event for the entire season, but moved to the top of the rankings two weekends ago at the Tyson Invitational where he clocked a time of 7.84s. He is expected to be locked in a tight race for the 60m hurdle championship, but enters the race as a frontrunner.
Lee is the only Lady Tiger to lead the conference in an event, but actually gives the Memphis women a potential for two titles, as she sits atop the standings in both the shot put and weight throw. Her marks of 52-07.50" (16.04m) in the shot and 60-04.50" (15.05m) in the weight make her a solid pick to become a two-event champion.
Beyond the three conference leaders, a number of U of M athletes sit just off the pace and have the capability to challenge for further event crowns. Heading this group for the men is junior J.D. Erickson, who is in second position in both the shot and weight. His tosses of 55-10.25" (17.02m) in the shot and 60-07.25" (18.47m) in the weight make him a strong contender in both events.
Another U of M thrower, Norbert Gulyas, gives Memphis a second threat in the shot and weight, as he ranks fourth in the shot with a mark of 53-07.75" (16.35m) and 13th and within striking distance in the weight. Darius Frye, who currently sits in ninth in the shot and 14th in the weight could make a push to give the Memphis men three scorers in the throws.
Junior Austin Hunter, who posted a time of 48.74s in the 400m at the Tyson Invitational, holds fifth fastest time in the conference in the event, and has the best scoring shot of any of the Tiger sprinters.
Jumpers Imre Lorincz and Brandon Winbush give the men a chance for two scorers in the long jump where the pair rank seventh and eighth, respectively with leaps of 22-09.00" (6.93m) and 22-08.00" (6.91m).
800m specialist Avi Shaposhnik is the final Tiger to sit in scoring position entering the conference meet, as he is seventh in the event with a time of 1:55.87.
On the women's side, Daniele Riendeau and Chen Edri each rank fifth and pose serious threats in the one-mile and high jump, respectively. Riendeau has posted a time of 5:01.14 in the mile, which closely resembles the marks by the C-USA leaders, while Edri has a best jump of 5-07.75" (1.72m), but has narrowly missed 5-08.75" (1.75m) on several occasions, which would move her even closer to the top competitors.
Two remaining Lady Tigers, Sheena Ohlig and Cassandra Harding, also sit in position to have a major impact in Houston. Ohlig registered the seventh fastest time of 8.78s in the 60m hurdles, while Harding, who scored in the triple jump both indoors and outdoors last year, currently ranks 10th in the event with a leap of 37-09.50" (11.52m).
Several other U of M athletes enter the C-USA meet with the opportunity to move into scoring position. For the men, Gary Nemeth (100m and 200m) and Larry Harris (400m), each have the potential to break into the top-eight, while Josetta Brooks (60m hurdles), Annette Uzoh (shot put and weight throw), Chanel Dunn (100m) and Maria Majzik (long jump) could make their way into the scoring picture for the women.
The Memphis athletes will begin their quests for C-USA crowns Friday morning at 9:00 a.m. as the Indoor Championships begin with the start of the men's heptathlon. Events will continue throughout the day on Friday with the final event of the day set for 9:40 p.m. The meet will resume at 9:00 a.m. Saturday morning and is scheduled to conclude at approximately 5:00 p.m. Saturday evening.
Results for the Conference USA Indoor Championships will be posted at gotigersgo.com following the completion of competition each evening.