Track and Field teams wrap up indoor season

Mark Shanahan, Staff Reporter

The Eastern men’s and women’s track teams will host the Ohio Valley Conference Indoor Meet this weekend starting on Friday at Lantz Fieldhouse.

The two-day meet will include field events such as the long jump, high jump and shot put that will have their finals on Friday. Distance medley and the 5000-meter run will also finish up on Friday.

The rest of the running events will be preliminaries on Friday with the finals on Saturday.

Head coach Tom Akers said he likes where the men’s team is at right now in their position to win the men’s conference team title for the indoor season.

“I’m really happy with where we’re at right now,” Akers said. “I think we put ourselves in good position to make a run at the title. I think Southeast Missouri is favored on the men’s side right now.”

It is a close competition between five teams on the women’s side.

“Only 30 points separate the top five teams,” he said. “So it’ll be a dog fight all the way through every event, all the way through the two days, but we really performed well last week, hopefully we can take that momentum into this weekend.”

Eastern’s men have been extremely successful during indoor competition since they joined the OVC prior to the 1996-97 season winning all but three years. Southeast Missouri is the current defending champion from 2014.

The women last won the indoor season in 2012 during a streak of four consecutive team titles from 2009-12.

There are many freshman competing in it for the first time and Akers told them at the team meeting that it just another meet.

“I think feeling the anxiety levels right now,” Akers said. “Hopefully they’ll be able to relax and get into that competition frame of mind. It’s just another meet and if we go out and just perform like we have every other weekend then good things are going to happen.”

Redshirt junior Norvel Mohammed was just named Co-Male Track Athlete of the Year on Thursday. He holds the top season times in both the 200-meter and the 400-meter dashes with times of 21.23 seconds and 47.05 seconds.

Akers had to make the tough decisions on whom to let compete in the conference meet due to the tough limitations on the number of people you can bring.

“It just comes down to making the best decision possible for the team where we have the greatest opportunity to score points and it’s weird how that happens,” he said. “Sometimes it happens in different events and this time just like always came down to the last couple of spots to try and figure out who is going to get in.”

The meet will get underway at 8 a.m.


Mark Shanahan can be reached at 581-2812 [email protected].