Track releases 2013 schedule
Jan. 3, 2013
BEAUMONT – Head coach Trey Clark has high hopes heading into the spring semester, and he’ll look to put the Lamar track and field program to the test with a challenging slate for both the indoor and outdoor seasons.
Things will get started later this month as the team will depart for nearby McNeese on January 18 before participating in a two-day event at Houston.
“We’re actually getting started a little bit later than usual, and we like that we’re going to be able to get a couple good weeks of training in before we start competing,” Clark said. “I think we’re going to have a couple meets in there where our athletes are going to be learning how to compete indoors as they get ready for conference in February.”
Following the Houston meet, the team will head back to Lake Charles for the Jeff Davis Invitational before a number of athletes will make the trek to either the Tyson Invitational in Fayetteville, Ark., or the Husky Invitational in Seattle, Wash.”
“The good thing about this schedule is that we have meets where everyone will go compete and then some where only a select few will make the trip,” Clark explained. “It’s totally dependent on how the athletes are performing when it comes to those bigger meets.”
Lamar will close out February with the Southland Championships in Norman, Okla.
“I think the conference championships will be a very interesting this year after we lost three members from last year,” Clark said. “No one really knows how that’s going to affect track, but I’m very interested in seeing how it shakes out. We’ll get a better indicator of that over the course of the regular season, but I’m looking forward to it.”
Following the conference meet, the Alex Wilson Invitational in South Bend, Ind., provides the final opportunity for athletes to qualify for the NCAA Indoor meet, which will take place on March 8 and 9 in Fayetteville.
“The Alex Wilson meet is a last chance qualifier, and I think we have a few of athletes that can make it to the NCAAs,” Clark said. “It’s one of those events that you may or may not compete at every year, but it’s a good chance to make it to the national meet if you feel like you can make it.”
Two weeks after the NCAA Indoor Championships, the outdoor season will begin with the Victor Lopez Classic in Houston on March 22.
“We really enjoy going to the Victor Lopez meet,” Clark said. “It’s a great meet and a great setting, and it’s probably one of the best distance meets around. Our kids get a chance to run against a competitive field at cooler temperatures. At the same time there’s tons of competition across the board, so for us it’s a good way to start the season.”
The Texas Relays will follow just a few days later, beginning on March 27.
“The Texas Relays is an elite meet, and you never know who you’re going to get into it,” Clark said. “I think our kids have a shot to do some things, and it’s one of those meets that you look forward to every year.”
The team will then compete in a number of different events over the month of April, which includes three events in California, three in Texas and one in Lake Charles.
“We’re trying to meet the needs of the team and the needs of the individuals with a chance at making noise in the NCAA,” Clark said. “The meets in California give some of our distance kids a chance to put up some good times, and then the local meets will provide us a chance to get competition in at all levels. We also have a trip over to McNeese, which is hosting the conference meet, so that’s an opportunity to get familiar with the facility, and the trip to Texas State at the end of the month will be good chance for our sprinters and jumpers.”
The Southland Outdoor Championships will begin on May 10 in Lake Charles, and the NCAA West Prelims will take place two weeks later in Austin on May 23.
“It’s going to be nice to be so close to the conference meet this year,” Clark said. “The shorter the drive, the better. The fact that we only have an hour to go gives us the opportunity to do a few different things. Short of hosting the meet, this is as good as it gets for us. Following that, I think we have a few kids with a chance to go further than they did last year at the NCAAs, and a few more with a chance to do something for the first time. Our program is moving forward, and we should have an outside shot at a few All-Americans in outdoor track.”
The NCAA Outdoor National Championships will be held in Eugene, Ore., and begin on June 5.