March 29, 2012
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The Purdue track and field teams open their outdoor home season on Friday and Saturday as the Boilermakers host the Mike Poehlein Invitational. Friday’s action is scheduled to start at 3 p.m. and Saturday will begin at 10 a.m.
A total of 553 athletes from 13 schools will compete over the two days. Indiana, Notre Dame, Butler, and Ball State are among the traveling schools. Friday’s action will consist of the men’s and women’s hammer throw. Three Boilermaker women and two men are scheduled to compete. Dani Bunch will lead the group as the sophomore gets her first action for the outdoor season. Breann Fife and Emily Leckenby will also contend for the event title. Cal Luby and Jakob Engel will throw on the men’s side with a number of other Boilermakers competing unattached. Engel will also compete the next day in the discus and shot put.
Saturday’s action will begin with the javelin and discus to follow. Kaitlyn Brace leads the Purdue javelin group as the freshman won the event last week at the SEC/Big Ten Challenge with a throw of 43.76m (143-07.00). Kylie Hermanson, Elaine Gilbert, Laura Grabowski, and Emily Becker will also compete in the event. In the discus, Terri Anderson leads the group along with teammates Liberty Slinden and Bunch.
In the pole vault, scheduled for noon, Katie Vierk, Amanda Downey, Elizabeth Stover, and Alex Metzger will compete for the Boilermakers. Nikki Nunn will lead the Purdue group in the long jump as well. The sophomore also has the best seed mark. Kara Conflenti and Maria Paolillo will represent the Old Gold and Black in the women’s 5000m run. Conflenti has the top seed time in the event. Eight Boilermaker women will compete in the 1500m run. Dana Payonk and Jennifer Hall lead the Purdue bunch with identical seed times of 4:45.00.
Ciana Tabb will compete in the women’s 100m hurdles and dash. The sophomore ran a 14.35 second time in the hurdles last week. Purdue also has five competitors in the 400m dash. Taylor Morrison leads that group.
On the men’s side, the long jump looks to be a highly contested event. Seth Virgil from Purdue has the best seed mark for the Boilermakers with a distance of 7.28m (23-10.75) while Darrian Mikell of Indiana Wesleyan has the overall best mark of 7.40m (24-03.50). Geoff Davis will compete in the high jump for the first time in the outdoor season. The junior has a seed mark of 2.23m (7-03.75) which is the best in the field.
Dan Porter, Brett Klosterhoff, Dominic DeSantis, and Tyler Wynn will compete in the men’s 1500m. They will be challenge by a speedy group from Notre Dame among others. The 110m hurdles should be a good one as well. Brandon Winters from Purdue will compete with the second best seed time. Tyyon Neal has the top mark heading into the race with a 14.18 seconds time. Winters and Mario Cosey will be in the 100m dash as well. That race has a total of four individuals with sub-11 second times.
Live results will be available on PurdueSports.com during the events. Also check the Purdue track and field Twitter feed and Facebook page for results.