Track women anxious to compete

Cliff Erwin

In recent years, the Lady Lions track and field team has had great athletes, yet they were all in a certain events.

This year, the team is more spread out on talent and depth and for Patty Vavra, head coach, the first test occurs Friday and Saturday.

Like the men’s team, the Lady Lions dropped the Oklahoma Classic meet from their schedule because the coaches thought it was too early in the season to have a meet.

The team will have a tough meet in the home opener, with teams like the University of Arkansas, University of Oklahoma and Oral Roberts University competing.

This year’s team consists of 25 athletes, 13 of which are freshmen and 12 returning letterman.

“This is one of the best freshman classes that we’ve ever had,” Vavra said.

Vavra thinks the team has a lot of depth and talent all around instead of in one or two events.

In the past, the team would have to place some athletes in events that might not suit them. But now, Vavra thinks the team won’t have to do that.

Though the team is young, it also has experience.

Charmain Kent, the only senior on the team, is slated to be a power in the jumping events.

Danee Jones, sophomore, will be back in the throwing events with great expectations for the season. Mary Garrett, junior, is coming back after an injury-recovering year in the hurdling events.

Sophomore Ashley Caffey is currently out with injuries, and Vavra believes she won’t be back until the outdoor season at the earliest.

Overall, the team is looking forward to the upcoming meet to see how it will compete with other athletes.

“I think that everyone is anxious to have a meet,” said Rachel Patterson, distance runner.

“I don’t how well prepared we’re going to perform as a team, because we have a lot of freshmen and this is their first college meet. I think it’s a good starting point, and I think that we’ll have a good season.”

Vavra and the team hopes to rank in the top four of the MIAA conference this season.

Last season, the Lady Lions finished sixth in both the indoor and outdoor seasons.

Events for the meet begin at 5 p.m. Friday until finished, and the field events start at 11 a.m. and the running events begin at 3 p.m. on Saturday.