Tech Primed For 86th Annual Texas Relays

The No. 16 Red Raiders and No. 17 Lady Raiders are set for the 86th Annual Texas Relays.

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March 27, 2013

LUBBOCK, Texas - The Texas Tech track and field program is set to compete this weekend at the 86th Annual Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays as the No. 16 Red Raiders and No. 17 Lady Raiders begin competition Thursday at Mike A. Myers Stadium in Austin.

The Red Raiders and Lady Raiders enter the meet with 11 student-athletes ranked in the top 20 nationally led by sophomores Kole Weldon (shot put) and Cierra White (100-meter dash) who lead the nation in their events entering the meet.

White was named Big 12 Female Track and Field Athlete of the Week by the Conference Wednesday after taking the national lead in the 100-meter and climbing to No. 2 nationally in the 200-meter dash following a historic performance at the annual UTEP Springtime Invitational last weekend. Meanwhile, Weldon leads the nation on the heels of a runner up performance in the event at the 2013 NCAA Indoor Championships earlier this year.

Tech will return next week to host its first home outdoor meet of the season with the Red Raider Open scheduled for Saturday April 6 at the Terry and Linda Fuller Track and Field Complex. 


Texas Tech sophomore Cierra White will lead the Tech sprinters into the 86th Annual Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays as the quickly rising star leads the nation in the 100-meter dash and is ranked No. 2 in the 200-meter dash. White posted a new career-best last week at the annual UTEP Springtime Invite finishing first overall with a nation-leading time of 11.09. She later won the 200-meter dash with a school record time of 22.91 seconds. White, first team All-American in the indoor 4x400 relay earlier this year, is undefeated this season in each the 100-meter and 200-meter dash. Meanwhile, senior teammate Candace Jackson also holds a top-15 time in the 200-meter dash with a season-best 23.55 posted at the Aztec Invitational in the season-opener.

Senior Isaiah Gill leads the Red Raiders with a season-best time of 47.31 seconds in the 400-meter dash, the No. 14 time nationally entering this week.

Texas Tech senior Katie Grimes leads the Texas Tech hurdlers into the Texas Relays this weekend fresh off an All-America indoor season where she finished sixth at the NCAA Indoor Championships in the 60-meter hurdles. Grimes is off to a fast start to the 2013 outdoor season with a season-best of 13.48 (No. 5 nationally) in the 100-meter hurdles in a first place finish at the Aztec Invitational. Grimes earned second team All-America honors in the 100-meter hurdles during the 2012 outdoor season.

Meanwhile, Tramiane Maloney and Dwayne Extol each hold top 20 times in the men's 400-meter hurdles. Extol enters with a season-best of 52.16 (11th nationally) while Maloney enters with a season-best 52.37 (15th nationally).

Texas Tech junior Ezekiel Kissorio will lead a pack of Tech distance runners into Austin competing in both the invitational mile run and on the Red Raider distance medley relay team. Meanwhile, freshman Emily Koenig will compete on the women's side in the 10,000-meter run. Both men's and women's DMR teams will compete in their first race of the season.

2013 NCAA Indoor Triple Jump Champion Bryce Lamb is scheduled to compete in both the long jump and triple jump this weekend. Lamb, a 2011 First Team All-American in the outdoor long jump, enters with a career-best 8.15-meters (26'-9.00") in the long jump and a career-best 16.56-meters (54'-4.00") in the triple jump. Meanwhile, Lady Raiders Le'Tristan Pledger and Avril McGhee will in the long jump and triple jump. Pledger, who finished 10th at the World Championships last spring, enters after a breakout indoor season in which she recorded a season-best 6.13 (20'-1.50") and finished seventh at the Big 12 Championships. Meanwhile, McGhee who finished fourth at the 2012 Big 12 Outdoors and advanced to the West Preliminaries last year, enters the Texas Relays with a current season-best of 11.74-meters (38'-6.25").

Red Raider sophomore Jacorian Duffield and sophomore Bradley Adkins will lead a pack of Tech high jumpers into the Texas Relays. Freshman Natalie Thompson will be the lone Lady Raider competing in the high jump. Duffield enters the Texas Relays with a career-best of 2.20-meters (7'-2.50") and advanced to the NCAA West Preliminaries last season as a freshman. Adkins meanwhile has cleared a season-best 2.08-meters (6'-9.75") and is coming off a breakout indoor season in which he finished third at the Big 12 Indoor Championships.

Texas Tech junior Kyal Meyers will lead a contingent of Tech pole vaulters into the Texas Relays as the 2012 All-American looks towards another banner outdoor campaign. Competing in the `A' section, Meyers enters with a career-best clearance of 5.41-meters (17'-9.00") and a current season-best of 5.18 (17'-0.00"). Meanwhile, freshman Shelby Poncik will look to improve upon her strong start to the outdoor season. Poncik has cleared a season-best 3.73-meters (12'-2.75").

 Texas Tech sophomore, and 2013 NCAA Indoor Shot Put Runner-Up Kole Weldon enters the Texas Relays No. 1 nationally in the men's shot put. Weldon kick-started his 2013 outdoor campaign with a first place finish at the Aztec Invitational where he took the national lead with a toss of19.43-meters (63'-9.00").  Weldon qualified for the 2012 NCAA Outdoor Championships in the discus as a freshman last year and is scheduled to compete in both events this weekend. Weldon enters with a season-best mark of 54.40-meters (178'-6.00") in the discus this year and went 59.92-meters (196'-7.00") in the event last year. 

The Lady Raider 4x400 relay, comprised of Christen Rivers, Tiffany Tarver, Olivia Lewis and Amoy Blake, enters the Texas Relays with the No. 3 time in the nation after finishing first overall at the Aztec Invitational with a time of 3:36.94.  




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