Memphis Track Sets its Sights on Ole Miss Invitational
April 10, 2009
MEMPHIS , Tenn. - The University of Memphis track and field squad prepares to compete at the Ole Miss Invitational in Oxford, Miss. at the Ole Miss Track and Field Complex on Saturday, April 11.
"I believe that if we can get good weather like we had last weekend, we have a few kids that are ready to make a pretty major breakthrough," said head coach Kevin Robinson. "I'm looking for some of our younger kids to step up and be competitive when it matters. We've got a good team and a solid group of athletes, but we just need the right conditions and the right timing for them to step up and perform."
Competition begins at 11:30 a.m. with the men's hammer throw and the women's javelin. Admission to this year's Ole Miss Invitational will be free of charge.
Sophomore Aaron Whetstone recorded two NCAA regional qualifying marks last week at the Joey Haines Invitational in Cape Girardeau, Mo. in the long jump with a mark of 7.50m (24-07.25) and a qualifying 15.01m (49-03.00) mark in the triple jump. Fellow sophomore Jerome Leslie recorded a personal best mark in the triple jump with a leap of 14.82m (48-07.50). Freshman Inger Anne Froysedal broke the Memphis school record in the triple jump at the same meet with a mark of 12.90m (42-04.00).
"Jerome (Leslie) is very close to qualifying regionally for the triple jump," said Robinson. "We've had a lot of kids that have really stepped up in practice including Inger (Anne Froysedal) who is looking very strong at this point."
Senior Christian McDonald grabbed his first NCAA regional qualifying mark at last week's Joey Haines Invitational of 62.80m (206-00).
"Greg Norrid is really starting to bounce back from his pectoral tear and he is starting to look very good in the shot put," said Robinson. "Christian (McDonald) is also looking very good and starting to push his performances up."
Several teams from around the region are expected to compete this weekend, including Memphis, Alabama, Jackson State, Louisiana Tech, host Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Tulane and Vanderbilt, while Big East foe Notre Dame will also take part in the meet.
"We're not going to see anything different this week that we haven't seen in the past weeks," said Robinson. "I think we have a core group of kids that can compete with anybody in the country. As long as the weather is there, I know that it will be a good competitive meet and hopefully we can step up to the bell and make some improvements."
This is the fourth meet of the outdoor season for the Tigers. Memphis hosts their own Memphis Tiger Invitational next weekend on Friday, April 17 and Saturday, April 18 at the Billy J. Murphy Track Complex.