Eagles Play Host to GSU Invitational Track & Field Meet Saturday
STATESBORO, Ga. - Georgia Southern will play host to the GSU Invitational Saturday, March 27 at the Track Complex at Erk Russell Athletic Park. In addition to the Eagles, five other institutions, Albany State, Clark Atlanta, Savannah College of Art and Design, Savannah State, and USC Beaufort will compete on the women's side with the five schools bringing their men's squads as well. Eleven running events and eight field events are on the slate for the full day of competition with the steeplechase beginning at 9:45 a.m. and the final event, the 4X400 meter relay going off at 6:10 p.m. Admission to the GSU Invitational is free and a full list of events and participants is available at www.GeorgiaSouthernEagles.com.
"There meet features a very strong field in the 100 meters, 100 meter hurdles, the 200 meters, 400 meters, all the sprints, and I think our team can dominate in these events," said Eagles Head Coach Natalie Smith. "Our student-athletes may be a little jittery because they will be competing at home, in front of their peers -- some for only the second time - but there is an advantage in that we don't have to travel. The benefit is that we can sleep in our own beds and spend time with the parents who are already in town."
The Eagles are coming off strong performances at the Coastal Carolina Shamrock Invitational last weekend where they competed against some of the region's best track and field athletes. For Saturday's program, Smith identified several student-athletes who should have a standout meet.
Junior JoAnn JaJa Benson (Savannah, Ga.), who posted her best time of the outdoor season in the 400 meter dash last weekend (58.01), will race in the 200 meter dash and 400 meter dash. Sophomore Morgan Jefferson (Villa Rica, Ga.) looks to improve upon her best performance in the 400 meter dash, a time of 58.22, posted at the Shamrock Invitational. Benson and Jefferson are currently fourth and sixth, respectively, in the Southern Conference rankings in that event.
Distance runners senior Laura Fuller (Cartersville, Ga.) and sophomore Brittani Martin (Alpharetta, Ga.), will continue to pace the Eagles in distance events. Martin posted the fourth-best time in the SoCon, and top-five time in the meet, in the 10,000 meter run at the Shamrock Invitational last weekend at 40:23.58. Martin will run in the 5,000 meter event Saturday with a start time of 5:15 p.m. Fuller, who has the second-best time in the conference in the mile run and a top-five ranking in the 800 meter race, is set to run in the 800 and the 1,500 meter run. The 1,500 meter race will start at noon with the 800 meter race going off at 3 p.m.
Freshman Jasmine Billings (Lawrenceville, Ga.) ran a 14.70 (+2.2) in the 100 meter Hurdles at the Coastal Carolina Shamrock Invitational, placing her fourth in the conference rankings. She will compete in the same event this weekend and also participate as a member of the 4X100 Relay team.
The GSU Invitational will be held at the same venue as the 2009 Southern Conference Outdoor Track and Field Championships. Built in 2005 near Paulson Stadium, the Track complex contains a 400 meter, eight-lane track surface, made of Mondo, the same material used at the Olympic Games and World Championships.
- Category: Track & Field
- Published on Friday, 26 March 2010 17:27