Experience, newcomer skill to anchor track and field squads
The Cougars opened their spring track and field season with a successful outing at the Leonard Hilton Memorial, also their home opener.
Both the men and women finished the tournament with numerous top 10 finishes and even more top five finishes to get them primed for the season ahead.
The team will look to continue its home stand at the Houston Invitational this weekend.
Both the men and women will be competing across nearly all events. The weekend-long tournament will allow the Cougars to test their talents against high-profile schools in Texas.
The Cougars swept the 60m dash, with all six finishing runners being Cougars, but by far the biggest news coming out of the Leonard Hilton Memorial was junior Cameron Burrell who won the 60m with a time of 6.55 to jump into the number one spot in the nation in the event.
The women also dominated in the 60m dash having junior Bria Carter, junior Tori Williams, and senior Kelli Hardnett finishing in the top three respectively with only a second separating Carter and Williams from each other.
The Cougars seem primed to compete heavily in the event on both sides of the track.
In the high jump and pole vault, both the men and the women came out with top five finishes. Sophomore Diayja Sheppard and freshman Haley Houston finished first and second in the high jump and pole vault respectively. Freshman Colin George and junior Morris Olumba finished third and second in the high jump, while Hayden Flores finished fourth in the pole vault.
Sophomore Felipe Valencia, junior Jose Herrera and junior Alejandro Garza each finished in the top ten in both the shot put and the weight throw.
Valencia finished third in the shot put, a squad which will benefit heavily from junior Cameron Cornelius, who will be looking to win his third Indoor conference title in the event.
Highly touted freshmen recruits Amere Lattin and Marcus McWilliams proved their worth in the 60m hurdles, finishing second and third respectively with only three seconds separating Lattin from first place.
The two teammates will benefit from the return star hurdler senior Isaac Williams, who will add depth to the squad.
The women hurdlers are a strong group as well, with sophomore’s Kelsey Roy and Bailee Logsdon both finishing in the top two in the 60m hurdles, separated from each other by a second.
McWilliams also joined fellow freshmen Gerald Mills alongside junior Caleb Holl and senior Jermaine Fyffe on the victorious 4x400m relay squad. In the women’s event they also came out of the home opener victorious.
Junior Mandy Nolan, sophomore Kelly Goudeau, senior Mayorca Young and Hardnett finished fifteen seconds faster than any other relay team.
While there is no guarantee the squads will remain the same at the upcoming meets, coaches Leroy Burrell and Carl Lewis will have the benefits of the skill of the returners and the depth of both rosters to help the squad this season.