MAVS GET SET TO HEAD TO THE SOONER STATE FOR THE 2009 NCAA MIDWEST REGIONALS
May 26, 2009
Arlington, Texas - Most of the student body and faculty at the University of Texas at Arlington has abandoned campus life for summer fun in the sun, but many Mavs track and field athletes are preparing for what could be a historical regional track meet this weekend in Norman, Oklahoma.
The Mavericks track team is sending 11 individual competitors and three relay teams to the 2009 NCAA Midwest Regional Track and Field Championships on Friday and Saturday on the campus of the University of Oklahoma. Texas-Arlington is sending the same amount of individual competitors as in 2008, but is sending a women's sprint relay team which they were unable to do last year.
The 2008 regional meet was a learning process for many Mavs that are making the return trip this year. Jasmine Walls, Jarid Vaughan and Cordero Gray combined to have less than five years of experience last year and no member from the Mavs qualified for nationals. This trio of Mavs is now the leaders of the team and they have their sights set on performing better this year.
Canadian born sprinter Jarid Vaughan leads the way for the UTA men as he will compete in the 100 and 200 meter dashes and he will provide his speed to both of the relay teams. He ran the second fastest time in this year's field of athletes in the 100 meters with a 10.23.
Vaughan's teammate Cordero Gray will have a similar game plan this weekend as he will run in the same events. Both Vaughan and Gray are running in the most events (4) for the Mavericks.
Senior Wade Hayes and junior Andrew Duncan III return to regionals as well this year and hope to perform well on the field side of the meet. Hayes is the four-time defending champion of the Southland Conference in the pole vault and Duncan III is qualified in the high jump and triple jump.
Junior Jasmine Walls, who was the lone female UTA athlete to qualify for regional a year ago, leads the way for the UTA women as she will compete in the 100 and 200 meters. The 2009 Women's Southland Conference Athlete of the Year will also run a leg of the women's sprint relay team along with LaDoreal Thompson, Antonia Hopkins and Clarissa Toomer. Also, Thompson and Hopkins qualified in the 100 and 400 meters, respectively.
The action gets kicked off on Friday at 11:00 a.m. with the women's hammer throw. For a complete schedule of events and a list of all this weekend's competitors check out www.soonersports.com/sports/c-track.com