May 26, 2010
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Florida State track and field teams (Men-No. 8/Women-No. 11) head to Greensboro, N.C., to participate in the 2010 NCAA East Regional Championships, May 27-29 at the Irwin R. Belk Stadium on the campus of North Carolina A&T. In the first year of the preliminary round format, the Seminoles will travel 33 student-athletes who will compete for the right to advance to NCAA Championships, June 9-12, in Eugene, Ore.
“We have to have some breakthroughs this weekend,” FSU head coach Bob Braman said. “We have some athletes that need to take that next step and make it to nationals. We have to be able to do well and move on to the next round. We don’t have a lot of margin for error. We have had a lot of adversity to overcome. We need to maximize some of our athletes. It’s not about having more weapons than everyone else; it’s about doing everything you need to do with the people you have.”
In the first year of the new format, Florida State will join all 200 colleges and universities east of the Mississippi in the East Preliminary Round that will include over 2,500 athletes. The top 48 athletes from the region in their respective event were selected to participate in the first round with 12 advancing to the final site. There will be no team score this year as the meet will only be used to qualify those specific athletes for the NCAA Championships.
Headlining the FSU women will be Kim Williams, who currently holds the country’s best triple jump this year, 100m region leader (second in the nation) Marecia Pemberton and Pilar McShine, who holds the region’s third-best 1500m time. Florida State’s 4x100m relay will enter competition with the fastest time in the region at 43.13.
“Kim Williams has been a bit injured this year and we don’t feel like it’s sensible to have her compete in the long jump this season,” Coach Braman said. “She won both the long and triple jump at outdoor nationals last year so we are essentially leaving a national champion at home by not having her participate in that event. Pilar McShine is doing great this season. We need the distance group to step up. The sprints group needs to do it on this stage and not just in the 4x100m.”
On the men’s front, Maurice Mitchell will be one of the busiest athletes in the meet as he is slated to battle in the 100m, 200m and the 4x100m relay. Mitchell currently holds the fastest 200m time in the nation with teammate Brandon Byram owning the second fastest. Long jumper Marlon Woods will look to qualify for the first time as a `Nole as he enters the event holding with third-best performance, while thrower Michael Putman looks to punch his ticket to nationals in the shot put.
“Our jumpers need to take care of business,” Coach Braman said. “Michael Putman wasn’t able to get to nationals last year and we will need him to make it this year because you can’t score from home.”
For all information regarding regionals, please go to www.seminoles.com. Fans can keep up with the meet with live video and live stats on www.ncaa.com.