May 27, 2009
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – In its last meet before nationals, the Florida State track and field teams (No. 5 men/No. 3 women) will travel to the campus of North Carolina A&T in Greensboro, N.C., for the NCAA East Regional Track and Field Championship, May 29-30 on the Irwin Belk Track. With more than 100 East Coast schools competing, the Garnet and Gold will have their shot at taking the winner’s stand as 40 Seminoles are scheduled to compete throughout the weekend.
“We are excited about the weekend,” FSU head coach Bob Braman said. “This is what we wait for all year — the NCAA Outdoor Championships. This is the first step for it. You have to get out there and compete as if it were the NCAA Championships. Regionals is something we have been looking forward to since we came back in August.”
The fifth-ranked men kick-off the meet on Friday at 11:00 a.m. with the throwers. Among the listed contenders will be Bryan Howard and Pelle Rietveld in the javelin, Michael Putman (discus/shot put) and All-ACC Matt Wernke and Travis Whitfield in the hammer throw.
The sprinters will hit the track where the group is expected to dominate most of the competition as the brother duo of Jonathan and Kevin Borlee alongside Brandon O’Connor and Kevin Williams will be featured in the 4x400m relay. Florida State will also compete in the 4x100m relays in addition to also having some of its members in the 100m, 200m and 400m dash events.
Trey Andrews, Nathan Duby, All-ACC honoree Steeve Gabart and Matt Leeder will be a few of the distance runners representing the Seminoles while three-time NCAA All-East Region performer Javier Garcia-Tunon battles in the 400m hurdles.
Long jumpers’ Brian Chibudu and Ngoni Makusha are set to battle in the event where Chibudu currently holds the best jump in the nation while Makusha, who has seen limited action this outdoor season due to injury, has a jump which ranks fourth-best in the ACC.
As for the No. 3 women, six-time All-American Susan Kuijken and Pilar McShine enter the meet with regional qualifications in three events. Although not competing in all of them, the distance runners will be one of the most important assets for the squad.
NCAA All-American Teona Rodgers, Christal Washington, ACC Champion Hshkeni Richemond and All-ACC Brittany St. Louis will also have a busy day on the track as each of the women are listed to compete in three events. With several sprinters competing this weekend for the women, look for this group to be a strong presence for Florida State.
Also keep an eye out for the jumpers who are also expected to outshine their opponents as NCAA Champion Kim Williams, four-time All-ACC Tiara Swanagan, Amy Harris and Heather Leblanc will be competing on Friday.
Follow the Seminoles throughout the weekend as live stats will be available on www.ncataggies.com.