Ole Miss track and field gearing up NCAA Indoor Championships

Posted on Mar 10 2017 - 12:10am by SID

A school-record 10 entries will represent Ole Miss at this weekend’s NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships in College Station, Texas. Eleven athletes will compete for national titles for the eighth-ranked Rebel women and 28th-ranked men at Texas A&M’s Gilliam Indoor Stadium.

They include:

Raven Saunders – W shot put – 19.10m/62-8 – No. 1 seed
Janeah Stewart – W weight throw – 23.18m/76-0.75 – No. 1 seed
Ryan Manahan, Nick DeRay, Craig Engels, Sean Tobin – M DMR – 9:26.55 – No. 1 seed
MJ Erb – M 5000m – 13:43.55 – No. 7 seed
Raven Saunders – W weight throw – 21.67m/71-1.25 – No 8 seed
Janeah Stewart – W shot put – 17.31m/56-9.5 – No. 8 seed
Brian Williams – M shot put – 19.06m/62-6.5 – No. 15 seed
Craig Engels – M 800m – 1:47.54 – No. 15 seed
Ryan Manahan – M 800m – 1:47.76 – No. 16 seed
Lindsey Murray – W pole vault – 4.22m/13-10 – No. 16 seed

Robert Domanic and Trevor Gilley will also attend the meet as possible members of the distance medley relay squad.

Head coach Connie Price-Smith, a four-time Olympian and gold medalist at the 1999 Pan Am games, continues to bring elite talent to Oxford. This year, perhaps more than any other, she has plenty of reasons to be optimistic.

“It’s nice to have such a large group going to the championships. On the men’s side, we have eight athletes, and on the women’s side, we have three. If they go in there and do what they’re capable of doing, who knows what the outcome might be.” Price-Smith said, “The men’s distance side has had a great year going from cross to indoors. I think they’re all really excited about going out there and being able to show what they can do and represent Ole Miss. I think their excitement about it will help them perform really well. Just about everybody going has been to NCAAs before. After having run the DMR and getting third last year, they’re ready to go in and do their best to better that performance.”

Gilliam Indoor Stadium, built in 2009, is one of the most modern and comprehensive indoor track facilities in the nation. With the capacity to hold 5,000 fans, Texas A&M held the NCAA Division 1 Track Championship there in 2009.

“Texas A&M has a great facility, a little different than the others we’ve been in this year. It’s a fairly high banked track. It’s decent for spectator view, so it’ll be nice to sit in the stands and watch everything. We won’t be on the infield right next to the athletes, so that will be a different. I think it’s going to be a great meet,” Price-Smith said.

Friday’s events include the women’s shot put, men’s 800-meter prelims, men’s shot put, men’s 5000 meters and men’s distance medley relay.  Saturday’s events include the women’s pole vault, women’s weight throw and men’s 800-meter final.