The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

Track and field gear up for Big East Tournament

The Big East Indoor Championships, the highlight of the indoor season for Marquette’s track and field team, will be held this Friday and Saturday in New York City.

The meet sets qualifying marks for every event so that only the best compete at the Big East. It’s the one time in the indoor season in which Marquette gets to face off against its conference foes.

“In any of the other sports, you want to do well against your conference,” coach Bert Rogers said. “Everyone has a different way of going about it and in our sport it’s just this one meet that it comes down to. We want to do as well as we can there.”

Last season the Golden Eagles finished 13th out of 13 teams on the men’s side and 15th out of 16 teams on the women’s side.

In order to improve upon those marks, athletes must step up and perform their best at this meet. Rogers said high jumper Erynn James, pole vaulter Carrie Schmid, thrower Jeff Kluge in the weight throw, and sprinter Tyler O’Brien in the 200-meter dash, are four athletes who could fair well in the competition.

On Dec. 11, 2009, at the Iowa State Holiday Preview redshirt senior Jeff Kluge took  sole possession of second place in Marquette History for the best weight throw. He threw the 35-pound weight 58 feet, 3 3/5 inches, leaving him just behind the all-time leader Dan Fax’s mark of 62 feet, 7 3/4 inches.

After the performance at Iowa State, Kluge said the number one spot was within his grasp. He moved closer to it at the Milwaukee Dual Meet on Jan. 23 with his throw of 61 feet, 8 1/2 inches. Kluge threw that distance again at the preliminaries at the Meyo Invitational on Feb. 5. The ideal situation for him to break the record would be at the Big East Indoor Championships.

Senior Erynn James is the owner of the best high jump performance in Marquette history at 5 feet, 10 inches at the Milwaukee Dual Meet. Bert Rogers has faith that his record holding jumper can do well at the conference meet this weekend.

“Now we’re to the point where making five-nine is pretty standard for her,” Rogers said. “We want to be jumping five-ten, five-eleven. We want to try to win the Big East.”

James’ goal is to finish in the top five at the meet, a goal she thinks will require her to jump around 5 feet, 10 inches.

Redshirt senior Carrie Schmid owns the school record for women’s indoor pole vaulting at 12 feet, 8 inches, a mark she set in 2008. There’s nowhere left for her to go on the record book, but she wants to make sure she contributes to the team’s success at the meet.

“Last year we didn’t do very well, so I want to improve upon our team score,” Schmid said. “I’d love to place in the top five.”

Schmid redshirted last year due to shin injuries, but at the 2008 Big East Indoor Championships, she finished in fifth place. Rogers said she’s a “big-meet performer.”

“She struggled early, but over the last couple of weeks she’s really started to put it together in practice, in the meets, and she’s really looking like the Carrie that is our school record holder,” Rogers said.

Junior Tyler O’Brien is the record holder of the men’s indoor 200-meter dash (21.87 seconds), which he achieved last season. In order to compete for the 200-meter dash title, he said he’ll have to run a sub-22-second race.

O’Brien injured his hamstring before the Milwaukee Dual Meet. He said the injury is mostly behind him but that he’s still behind due to the training time he lost with the injury.

“The times haven’t been as good as I wanted them to be (since the injury), but I’m feeling more confident and hopefully it all comes together at the championships,” O’Brien said.

All four of these previously mentioned athletes had last weekend off. Now it’s time for them to show that they deserved the break.

Story continues below advertisement
Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All Marquette Wire Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *