TCU travels to Philadelphia for historic Penn Relays
April 25, 2007
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - After tallying 16 regional qualifying marks and picking up nine gold medals at the TCU Invitational on April 21, the TCU track and field team will face its stiffest competition so far this outdoor season beginning April 26-28 at the 113th running of the Penn Relays.
Hosted by the University of Pennsylvania and held at Franklin Field, the Flyin' Frogs will have a total of 23 athletes compete, including 14 women and nine men, in one of the most recognized meets in the U.S.
"It is going to be a big test to get a good indicator where we are," head coach Darryl Anderson said. "From there, we get 10 days to get ready for the Mountain West (Conference Championships). You really feel like the season is getting ready to kickoff into high gear this season and we'd like to come back feeling pretty good about ourselves."
Included in the highly competitive field are 16 women's teams and 13 men's teams that are currently ranked in Trackwire's Top 25. Included among the ranked teams on the women's side are No. 1 LSU, No. 4 South Carolina, No. 6 Michigan, No. 7 Oregon, No. 8 Texas A&M, No. 8 Auburn, No. 8 Miami, No. 11 Texas, No. 14 Virginia Tech, No. 15 Nebraska, No. 16 Georgia Tech, No. 17 BYU, No. 19 Tennessee, No. 19 Kansas, No. 22 Wake Forest and No. 25 Duke.
The ranked programs on the men's side include No. 1 Florida State, No. 2 LSU, No. 3 Auburn, No. 5 Texas, No. 7 Louisville, No. 8 Oregon, No. 9 Tennessee, No. 9 Wisconsin, No. 13 Clemson, No. 14 North Carolina, No. 16 Arkansas, No. 18 Texas A&M and No. 24 Liberty.
TCU will begin competition on Thursday at 9 a.m. CT with Meaghan Peoples and Kishelle Paul competing in the 400-meter hurdles.
Also competing on Thursday will be both the women's 4x100 and 4x400 relay teams. Individually, both McKale Davis and Festus Kigen will compete in the men's and women's 5,000 meters at 7:45 p.m. and 8:25 p.m., respectively.
Candis Kelley will begin competition in the field for the Frogs with the women's shot put at 11 a.m. CT Thursday. Also competing in the field on Thursday will be Neidra Covington and JimAnne Hejny in the long jump at 3 p.m.
On Friday, Clint Renfro will open TCU's day with the 400-meter hurdles at 8 a.m. The Frogs will also have five athletes compete in the 100 meters, which begins with the men's first heat at 2:10 p.m.
In addition to competing in the 100 meters and 400-meter relay, TCU's men's team will compete in the 4x100, 4x200 and 4x400 relays. The women's team will also run in the 4x200 relay, slated for 1 p.m.
In the field, Trey Jordan will compete in the shot put at 11 a.m., while Covington and Hejny are scheduled to compete in the triple jump at 10 a.m.
The men's 4x100 final will be at 12:55 p.m. Saturday. Also, the finals of both the men's and women's 4x200 and 4x400 relays will take place on Saturday.
On the year, TCU has 50 NCAA regional qualifying marks. Thirty-four of the marks have come from the women's team, while 16 are from the men's team.
Last season, TCU advanced both the men's and women's 4x100 and 4x400 relay teams to the finals. The men's 4x400 relay team placed second (3:05.45), while the men's 4x100 relay team finished third (39.89).
"Last year, all four of our relays were in the championship finals and that is really what we'd like to do again," Anderson said.
The Penn Relays has almost 22,000 entries this year, half of which are entered in the high school division. The three-day attendance at the meet is likely to top 100,000 for the third year in a row. On average, 45,000 fans have attended Saturday's competition over the last six years, making the meet the best-attended meet in the U.S. In the history of track and field, only the Olympics and World Championships have had more spectators.
"It is a big, historic meet and in college track it is not every week-in and week-out that you run in front of 30,000 people, and I think that is what makes it special," Anderson said.
Complete results from the Penn Relays can be found by visiting gofrogs.com. Additional meet information can be found on www.thepennrelays.com.