Dec. 6, 2013
The Purdue track and field teams were forced to change their plans just before departing for the Southern Illinois Invitational on Friday afternoon. Due to significant snow storms in the Midwest, the Boilermakers will now travel to Fort Wayne, Ind., for the Mastodon Opener, hosted by IPFW.
-The Boilermakers will compete at the IPFW Athletics Center in Fort Wayne, Ind.
-The Mastodon Opener is scheduled to begin Saturday at 11 a.m. ET.
-Purdue will compete against IPFW, Butler, Valparaiso, Oakland, Miami (Ohio) and Indiana Tech.
-Schedule of Events
-Purdue will send 20 men and 24 women to the season-opening meet.
-On the men's side, Coy Blair (shot put, weight throw), Chukwuebuka Enekwechi (shot put, weight throw), Kevin Griffith (600m, 4x400m), Andre' Peart (60mH, 400m, 4x400m) and Brandon Winters (60mH, 200m, 4x400m) are the top returners who will compete. Each of them qualified individually for the outdoor regionals last season.
-Tyler Askew (60m, 200m, long jump), Lachlan Brown (600m, 4x400m), Demetrius Carr (long jump, triple jump, 4x400m), Frederick Kendal (600m, 4x400m), Obokhare Ikpefan (60mH, 400m, 4x400m), Skyler Peetz (high jump, long jump, 4x400m), Luke Veldt (800m) and Joseph Zweng (pole vault) are scheduled to compete for the first time in their careers as Boilermakers.
-Chris Arvia (600m, 4x400m), Mario Cosey (200m, 4x400m), Caleb Fricke (weight throw), Andrew Kendrick (600m, 4x400m), Rob McNair (400m), Caleb Reiff (weight throw) and Isaiah Walls (400m, 4x400m) are also scheduled to compete for Purdue.
-On the women's side, Cierra Brown (60mH, triple jump, 4x400m), Dani Bunch (shot put, weight throw), Nikki Nunn (200m, long jump, 4x400m) and Ciana Tabb (60mH, 4x400m) are the top returners from a year ago who are scheduled to compete. Each qualified for outdoor regionals.
-Savannah Carson (60m, 200m, long jump, 4x400m), Devynn Charlton (60m, 60mH, 4x400m), Carmeisha Cox (60m, 200m, 4x400m), Shantyra Delaney (60mH), Anna Deufel (60m, 200m), Taylor Dunlap (400m), Makayla Earnheart (400m, 4x400m), Addison Hall (60mH, high jump, long jump, 4x400m), Mackenzie Tromble (400m, 4x400m) and Briana Williams (60m, long jump) are scheduled to compete for the first time as Boilermakers.
-Vania Anane (triple jump), Kathryn Graf (high jump, 4x400m), Aarin Jones (400m, 4x400m), Kendria Kelly-Taylor (triple jump), Alexandra Parks (600m, 4x400m), Megan Plenus (800m, 4x400m), Kari Shoolbraid (600m, 4x400m), BreAnna Smith (600m, 800m, 4x400m), Georgia Williams (60m, 200m) and Twyla Winfrey (60m, 200m, long jump) are also scheduled to compete.
What To Watch For
Several Boilermakers are chasing Purdue records.
-Blair and Enekwechi had stellar freshman seasons a year ago. Enekwechi recorded the fifth-best shot put distance in Purdue indoor history with a mark of 18.66m (61-02.75). He also finished sixth at the Big Ten meet. Blair recorded the sixth-best shot put throw in program history with a mark of 18.58m (60-11.50). He won the bronze medal at his first Big Ten Championships. Enekwechi also recorded the fourth-best weight throw distance in program history with a mark of 21.90m (71-10.25) at the Big Ten Championships where he finished third. He also took third at the NCAA Championships.
-Winters cracked the top five in the 60m hurdles last season with a time of 7.82 seconds at the Big Ten Championships where he won the bronze medal.
-Jones ran the fifth-fastest women's 400m in program history. She finished eighth at the Big Ten Championships with a time of 55.04.
-Tabb has the third-fastest 60m hurdles time in program history. She recorded a time of 8.43 seconds to finish fifth at the Big Ten Championships last season.
-Bunch already holds the school record in the shot put with a 16.70m (54-09.50). She finished runner-up at the Big Ten Indoor Championships and won the outdoor conference meet. Bunch also has the second-best weight throw mark in program history with a distance of 21.61m (70-10.75), just one centimeter behind the record. She finished second at the Big Ten Championships last season after winning the championship each of the previous two years.
-Saturday's meet will be the debut for a handful of talented newcomers.
-Askew came to Purdue this fall after winning the Big South Championship in the long jump in 2012 at Coastal Carolina.
-Carr transferred to Purdue this fall from Lincoln College. Carr won the triple jump at the Dave Rankin Invite, hosted by Purdue.
-Ikpefan recorded three top 10 finishes at the USATF Junior Olympics a year ago, all in relays.
-Carson has a high school PR of 20 feet, one inch in the long jump. Her mark would rank fourth in Purdue history.
-Charlton and Cox are two of the fastest sprinters from the Caribbean Region as they finished 1-2 in the 100m at the Carifta Championships a year ago. Both have 100m times that are faster than the outdoor Purdue record.
-Dunlap has PRs in the 200m and 400m that would be among the top three in Purdue history.
-Earnheart has PRs in the 200m and 400m that would be among the top three in Purdue history.
Head Coach Lonnie Greene
-Greene is in his second year leading the Boilermakers. In his first year, the Boilermakers broke six school records and placed countless others in the top five. He led the men's team to the highest point total increase of all schools at the Big Ten Outdoor Championships, and had multiple medalists at the NCAA Championships. Greene helped 18 individuals and a relay team reach the NCAA East Regionals for the outdoor season, an increase 50% from the previous year.
-"We scheduled this early meet because we have a very young team," Greene said at his pre-meet press conference. "We have a big freshman class and the way to get them started is to get them some competition and some confidence. The goal is to start fast and build confidence and momentum for the season. We didn't want to let all of the hard work that we put in all fall go to waste by not competing until after the break. If we can start fast and run fast, the individuals will be more driven and motivated to train during the 14 days off before we come back in January."
-"We have kids running PRs at practice already and that's exciting. We just need the new kids to fully buy in and this weekend will be our first chance to get a look during competition. I think the returners are all bought in and are ready to exceed expectations. One of our mantras this year is `It's time to produce.' They believe in that. They believe the work that they put in this fall will be effective. They are chomping at the bit to get to competition, and that's another reason we want to get started now. We want to start fast and set the tone for the entire indoor and outdoor seasons."