The Texas Tech Track and Field program will look to build on its successful start to the 2019 indoor season in the upcoming Texas Tech Classic & Multis.
The three-day event is set to begin at noon Thursday, Jan. 24, in the Sports Performance Center. Day two of the meet is slated for a 3 p.m. start, while the third and final day of the event will begin at 10 a.m.
Though the Tech men’s team currently claims the top-ranked spot in the country, the Red Raiders will not be the only program at the Texas Tech Classic & Multis with a number prefacing their name.
Among the contenders are six of the top 30 men’s teams and six of the top 30 women’s teams in the nation, according to Tech Athletics, presenting Tech the opportunity to hold down the SPC against some of the best programs across the country.
Florida State, Texas A&M, Miami and Southern California (USC) are just a few of the notable schools the Red Raiders will take on in their third meet of the season.
Both the men’s and women’s squads have set the bar high for any contenders looking to take on the Red Raiders, as the program has tallied 21 personal bests in two weeks.
Senior sprinter Andrew Hudson serves as an example of the elite level Tech is performing at. His 20.41s time in the 200m race during last weekend’s Red Raider Invitational is currently the top ranked time in the world, according to Tech Athletics.
Hudson also participated in the 4x400m relay, where he was joined by sophomore Divine Oduduru, senior Vincent Crisp and junior Tyreek Mathis. The four Red Raiders finished the event with a time of 3:04.93s, notching the second fastest time in program history, according to Tech Athletics.
As for thowers, graduate student Duke Kicinski held things down in the shotput event with a launch measuring 64’-8.75” (19.73m) to account for a new personal record of his own.
The women’s team has also had a handful of solid performances to start the season. Sophomore thrower Seasons Usual had success in the weight throw event as she set another personal record with a toss measuring 60’-4.75” (18.41m) to take third place, according to Tech Athletics.
Junior jumper Chinne Okoronkwo, a transfer from Wisconsin, took first place in the triple jump event with a leap of 43’-3.25” (13.19m), according to Tech Athletics. The jump lifted her to a third-place seed in the national rankings. The new-to-Tech junior provided insight on what has made a difference in her performance upon arriving on campus.
“I feel really relieved. It was an atmosphere change, coming to Tech and being able to train with an amazing group of jumpers and Coach (James) Thomas has been a huge difference,” Okoronkwo said, according to Tech Athletics.
The Tech women’s team began the season with the No. 26 ranking and have since climbed to No. 16. One of many athletes responsible for the team’s recent rise to prominence is senior sprinter Sara Limp. In the last meet, Limp clocked a time of 23.60s in the 200m race to secure second place and set a new personal record, according to Tech Athletics.
Tech Director of Track & Field and Cross Country Wes Kittley said he is looking forward to the upcoming meet.
“This should be the week we start really improving. We’ve had two or three weeks to get everyone back in school, so I’m real excited – when you put this talent together, something good is going to happen,” Kittley said, according to Tech Athletics.