HARRISONBURG, Va. - The James Madison women's track & field team is ready to hit the road for its second weekend of competition. The Dukes will split the squad for the Jan. 25 and 26 competitions, with some headed to Virginia Tech and others headed to George Mason.
The sprinters and relay teams will travel south for the Hokie Invitational in Blacksburg, Va., which begins at 5 p.m. on Friday and runs through Saturday afternoon. The field and multi-event athletes and distance runners will go north for the Patriot Games in Fairfax, Va. where multi-event competitions begin at 4 p.m. Friday and single-event competitions begin at 11 a.m. Saturday.
The Dukes will continue their early season push to qualify for the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Indoor Championships. While the championships are not held until the first weekend of March, head coach Ta' Frias wants to take as many athletes as possible to Boston to compete.
"With the ECACs, it's about getting as many people qualified for the meet as possible," Frias says. "[Then] we can take a really strong and very big team to the championships."
JMU already has runners qualified for two different events following the Navy Invitational. Senior Katie Gorman (Lafayette Hill, Pa./Plymouth-Whitemarsh) hit the mark for the 5,000-meter run (17:33.64) following a Field House-record time of 16:55.71.
Eight athletes qualified in the distance medley relay (12:08.64) as the Dukes took first and second place in the event at Navy. The team of senior Erin Lopresti (Cranberry Township, Pa./Seneca Valley), sophomore Morgan Sheaffer (New Bloomfield, Pa./West Perry), senior Annie Reiner (Virginia Beach, Va./Ocean Lakes) and junior Kelsey Seymour (Ebensburg, Pa./Central Cambria) claimed victory with a time of 11:54.86. The JMU 'B' team, comprised of sophomore Kristen Landry (Boonton Township, N.J./Mountain Lakes), sophomore Tiel Westbrook (Mechanicsville, Va./Lee-Davis), sophomore Kelsey Langton (Hamilton Square, N.J./Notre Dame HS), and senior Stacey Nobles (Virginia Beach, Va./Ocean Lakes), crossed the line in 12:03.46 to take second place.