Track & Field Set For 2012 BIG EAST Indoor Championships
Feb. 16, 2012
2012 BIG EAST Indoor Track & Field Championships
MILWAUKEE - The Marquette University men's and women's track and field squads will make the trek to New York City for the 2012 BIG EAST Conference Indoor Track & Field Championships held Saturday, Feb. 18 and Sunday, Feb. 19 at the New Balance Track & Field Center at The Armory.
Events at The Armory begin at 7 a.m. Central time on Saturday morning and will conclude following the men's distance medley relay at 4:40 p.m. CT. Action will resume Sunday at 7 a.m. CT with the meet scheduled to wrap up with the awards ceremony at 2:20 p.m. CT
“I have been really pleased with how the season has been progressing and I feel like we have been taking positive steps each week," Marquette head coach Bert Roger said. "I am feeling really good about the team going into the BIG EAST with the improvements we have been making."
The meet is the seventh for the Golden Eagles since joining the BIG EAST prior to the 2005-06 academic year and the men have the athletes this season to notch their highest point total in that span.
"Tyler (O'Brien), Kyle (Winter), Jack (Hackett) and Jon (Kusowski) are all coming on strong as are some of the younger guys like Will Koeck, who extended his freshman record last week. On the guys side you don’t know who will step up as the weekend progresses. Our goal is to score the most points we have ever scored at the BIG EAST and I think we can do that."
O'Brien returns as the most experienced Marquette competitor with three previous trips to the indoor championships in the 200-meter dash, where he will look to top his program record of 21.75 seconds set earlier this season. The redshirt senior did not compete during the 2011 indoor season and recorded his best finish at the BIG EAST Indoor Championships of 22.15 seconds (sixth place) in 2008.
He ran the fastest 200 time in the BIG EAST during the 2011 outdoor campaign with a time of 21.23 seconds.
Kyle Winter also had a promising campaign in 2011 in the 800-meter dash and will look to top his eighth-place finish (1:52.43) from a year ago. In 2012, Winter has moved up Marquette's all-time top-10 lists in the 600-, 800- and 1,000-meter runs, ranking second, third and fourth, respectively.
Jack Hackett, Patrick Maag and Zack Grese will represent the Golden Eagles in a loaded men's mile field, with Hackett and Maag making their third appearances in the event. Hackett currently holds the third-best time in Marquette history in the event after winning the unseeded men's mile at the Meyo Invitational on Feb. 4 with a time of 4:06.69.
Junior Cheldon Brown will make his third appearance in the men's high jump where he will be joined by sophomore Michael Saindon. Brown and Saindon tied for seventh a year ago with a top height of 6 feet, 7 inches.
The Golden Eagles will look to make some noise in the men's weight throw where four competitors, led by redshirt senior Jonathan Kusowski, aim to earn points. Kusowski, Bret Hardin and William Koeck have all moved up MU's top-10 list in the event and rank among the top seven throwers in program history.
"We have some veteran talent on the women’s side, like Olivia Johnson, and we expect her to perform well. There are also some younger folks who I think can do some damage," said Rogers.
Sophomores Kate Hein in the 500 and Carlye Schuh in the long and triple jumps are making a return trip to the championships and their performances this season indicate the opportunity to improve upon their placements from a year ago.
Schuh has jumped a foot further in the long jump than she did at the championships in 2011 when she placed 12th overall. Hein has also shaved a second off her 500 PR since that time.
For the first time, live streaming video of the events will be available, courtesy of BIGEAST.tv.
Marquette's BIG EAST Indoor Finishes