TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Less than a week after finishing a highly successful indoor season, Florida State’s men and women open the outdoor track & field campaign Friday and Saturday at two separate venues.
FSU’s field event athletes and sprinters are competing at the UCF Black & Gold Challenge, in Orlando, Fla., while the distance runners are in Atlanta, Ga. for the Yellow Jacket Invitational at Georgia Tech’s George C. Griffin Track.
Florida State coach Bob Braman, who is accompanying the Atlanta group, described the outdoor openers as “rust-busters” for both groups.
“We’re going to compete hard, but this week is more about getting some early-season work done,” said Braman, whose teams will host the seven-team FSU Relays next week.
Friday’s schedule at Georgia Tech will be limited to the 5,000-meter run, which is scheduled to start at 8:30 p.m. Seven of the nine women entered will be representing the Noles for the first time since cross country season, including Addi Coggins, Fatema Jaffer, Mackenzie Landa and Forever Young.
Graduate student David Barney, coming off an All-ACC cross country season, will make his track & field debut with the Noles. The 5,000 will also mark the return of Michael Callegari to action for the first time since cross country. They are among eight FSU entries in the race.
FSU’s men and women are scheduled to compete in both the 1500 (12:40 p.m.) and 800 (2:15) on Saturday.
Friday’s action at UCF will revolve around the field events, where Kayla Maczuga, Conor McClain, Dante Newberg and Conner Flynn get things started with the javelin, beginning at 11 a.m. Redshirt freshman Olivia Ogles will make her outdoor debut in the pole vault for the Noles at 12 p.m., joined by teammates and Orlando area natives Nicole Breske and Summer Schafers.
Brandon Tirado opens his junior season ranked No. 3 all-time among the Noles in the hammer and will compete in his specialty event at 1 p.m.
Saturday’s slate at UCF begins with the women’s discus at 10 a.m., where the Noles have entered 2017 All-American Gleneve Grange, fresh off her All-American indoor shot put performance, and ’17 NCAA qualifiers Shanice Love and Ieva Zarankaite. Transfer Noah Agwu will make his FSU debut in the men’s discus, joined by shot put All-American Austin Droogsma and two-sport standout Fred Jones.
Competition on the track begins at 12:05 p.m. with freshman Tye Dickens making his outdoor debut in the 110-meter hurdles. ACC indoor 60-meter champion Edward Clarke leads a quartet of 200-meter entries.
Live Results from the UCF Black & Gold Challenge can be monitored here: http://halfmiletiming.com/event/ucf-black-and-gold-challenge/
Periodic updates from both meets can be tracked via Twitter @FSU_Track with daily recaps posted to Seminoles.com.