Track Heads To Arkansas For ASU Invitational

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
Montez Griffin (photo by Joshua McCoy)

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
Montez Griffin (photo by Joshua McCoy)
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM

Jan. 24, 2013

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OXFORD, Miss. – The No. 23-ranked Ole Miss men and the Ole Miss women will look to carry the momentum of some strong early-season indoor track outings into this Friday’s ASU Invitational in Jonesboro, Ark.

Action at the ASU Convocation Center will get underway at 10 a.m. CT with field events for both the men and women. The weight throw and shot put will serve as the meet’s initial two events. The running events are slated for an 11 a.m. start with preliminaries in the 55-meter dash and the 55-meter hurdles. The finals will get underway around 1:30 p.m.

The 23rd-ranked Rebel men have been paced by a pair of All-Americans in senior Ricky Robertson and sophomore Sam Kendricks so far this season.

Robertson is the reigning SEC Indoor Field Athlete of the Week after his NCAA-leading triple jump (52-8.25) at last week’s Auburn Invitational in Birmingham. The Hernando, Miss., native also ranks seventh in the NCAA in the high jump (7-2.5) and tied for 25th in the long jump (24-1.5). He leads the SEC in both the triple jump and high jump.

Kendricks is tied for second in the NCAA in the pole vault (18-1.75) and tied for the best pole vault by any American this year. In three meets this indoor season, the Oxford, Miss., product has broken three meet records, a facility record and has topped his own school record twice.

Other Rebel men ranked top 50 in the nation in their events include Morris Kersh in the triple jump (37th, 48-11.5) and Montez Griffin in the 400 meters (50th, 48.20).

The Ole Miss women have a star freshman sprinter in the making and enjoyed a bevy of quality distance runners join the squad at the last indoor meet.

Asia Cooper, who hails from Jackson, Miss., has assaulted the Rebel record books as a rookie. She ranks 22nd in the NCAA in the 60 meters with a time of 7.44 last weekend that ranks her fifth in school history. She has run 7.45 or better in each of her first three collegiate meets.

The distance runners were led in Birmingham by sophomore Haley Cutright, who broke the Ole Miss women’s indoor mile record with a winning time of 4:50.47 that ranks her 36th in the country. The previous school record of 4:50.71 had been held by Rachel Ellison since the 2004 SEC Championships. Senior Anne Threlkeld and Cutright finished sixth and eighth, respectively, in the 3,000 meters with times that ranked them both among the top five in school history.

The women's distance medley relay team made up of Tia Leake, Monica Williams, Sofia Hellberg-Jonsen and Margaret Harkness placed second in Birmingham with a time of 11:57.48 that ranks the unit second-best in school history and 23rd in the NCAA this year.

Other Rebel women who rank top 50 in the national rankings include Hellberg-Jonsen in the 800 (28th, 2:11.28), Jazmin Miller in the weight throw (28th, 62-8.75), Marci Morman in the triple jump (40th, 40-0.75) and long jump (47th, 19-2) and Fabia McDonald in the long jump (47th, 19-2).

Approximately 17 schools are scheduled to compete in the ASU Invitational including host Arkansas State, Troy, Louisiana-Lafayette, South Alabama, McNeese State, Southeast Louisiana, Central Arkansas and UALR, among others.

Admission to the 2013 ASU Invitational is $4 for adults and $2 for kids.

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