THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2012
Track & Field readies for A-Sun Indoor Championships Friday
The highlight of the indoor season starts Friday for the JU track & field team as it competes at the Atlantic Sun Indoor Championships in Johnson City, Tenn.

The Dolphins have won all six titles since the conference added the indoor championship in 2006. It will be a challenge for the Dolphins in 2012 after replacing nine of 17 scorers from the 2011 indoor title squad that totaled 101 of the 218 overall points.

The green and gold will have a small group of 16 athletes, including six new comers, who will contest the 14 individual event and two relay events during the two-day schedule.

“We will be relying on our veterans to guide the new comers in their first A-Sun Championship competition,” JU head coach Ron Grigg said. ‘”Any success we have will depend on contributions from all event areas, and all classifications.

“The A-Sun performance list shows the greatest level of parity in conference history. The race for the team title will likely be the tightest in the seven-year history of the event. I expect to see many, many conference records broken, and the conference top 10 lists will surely be thoroughly re-written.”

The Dolphins kick off the meet on Friday afternoon with the long jump at 3:30 p.m. Senior Stacey Young and junior Charlene Charles along with freshmen Petra Munkascy and Courtney Walker are scheduled in the event. Charles (2nd) and Young (4th) were each in the top five last season. Charles owns the best jump so far this year with a leap of 19’2.5” at the Sykes-Sabock Challenge Cup.

Charles, Young and Munkascy will also compete with freshman Shanique Walker in the 60-meter hurdle trials at 5:15 pm. Charles, Shadaey Campbell and Walker are slated to run in the 60-meter trails at 5:45 p.m. Charles is also scheduled to be in the high jump at the same time to try and defend her 2011 title.

Senior Akeela Bravo will be joined by junior Sara Schunter and freshman Sally Marie Futch in the shot put at 4 p.m. Senior Amalia Vogler along with juniors Bienna Freeman, Joane Pierre and sophomore LaTonya Payne are possible runners in the Distance Medley Relay at 6:20 p.m. to close the first day.

On Saturday, the Dolphins will send Bravo, Schunter and Futch to the weight throw at 11:30 a.m. Schunter had a personal-best toss of 48' 4.75" at the Sykes-Sabock Challenge Cup in the last JU meet.

Pierre and Keel will be joined by senior Baliee Hedstrom and sophomore Svenja Meyer in the mile at 12:30 p.m. Pierre posted a time of 4:59.74 in the mile two weeks earlier and won the meet last season in 5:02.17.

Later in the day, Pierre and Keel are slated to run again in the 800-meter with Freenma and Vogler at 1:55 p.m. Freeman broke the program record with a time of 2:09.35 which leads the A-Sun and rank 34th nationally. Pierre and Freeman took the top two spots in the 2011 meet.

Young and Shanique Walker will be in the triple jump starting 12:50 p.m. before the 60-meter hurdle finals at 1 p.m.

The Dolphins will have Campbell and Payne each run in the 400-meter at 1:10 p.m. Payne is the only Dolphin to compete in the 400-meter this season, running a 57.58 at the Sykes-Sabock Challenge Cup.

After the 60-meter finals at 1:45 p.m., Charles and Courtney Walker will run with Munkacsy and Courtney Walker in the 200-meter at 2:30 p.m. Walker had a team-best time of 24.74 in the UF Invitational on Jan. 22.

JU will end the meet with the 4x400-meter relay at 3:55 p.m. Vogler and Freeman each ran a leg of the winning relay squad in 2011 that had a time of 3:45.14. Charles, Campbell, Freeman, Courtney Walker and Shanique Walker may join the two above as a possible combination for the relay.

Fans can follow the action of meet through the live stats link on JUDolphins.com.