Georgia Southern University’s track and field team headed south to compete among 1,500 athletes in the Jimmy Carnes Invitational over the weekend.
The tournament was held at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center in Gainesville, Fla. and the competition was formidable.
The pentathlon was the main event on the first day. Athletes participating in a pentathlon have to compete in five different events. The five events in this pentathlon were the 55-meter hurdles, high jump, shot put, long jump and 800-meter run.
Along with junior Dana Edwards, freshmen Ashleigh Rasheed, Taylor Johnson and Nia Hill accepted the challenge and competed in the pentathlon for the first time this season.
The veteran Edwards had the best finish of the quartet with an overall eighth place finish followed by Rasheed (10th), Hill (12th) and Johnson (15th).
Although Rasheed finished 10th overall, her best result came in the shot put event where she finished first. She whirled around and threw the shot an impressive 10.05m.
Edwards’ best finish came in the 800m run where she had a good pace and rhythm that led to a third place finish.
Head coach Marlo Mincey said that despite this being the first pentathlon for the three freshmen, they went into it well prepared, and she is glad the experience is behind them.
On day two, freshman Kelsey Chandler got things started for GSU in the weight throw with a throw of 13.77m, which was good enough for 11th.
Junior Cherrelle King and sophomore Kimberly Thomas both finished in the top 10 of the 400-meter dash. King dashed through the 400m at a time of 58.55 and came in fourth. Thomas was not far behind at 58.95 in sixth place.
In the 200-meter dash, senior Ebony Carter had her work cut out for her in an extremely deep field of over 40 participants. Carter came in 12th at a time of 25.72.
Mincey has been consistent in saying that her team is still working its way into proper running shape after the long winter break.
“Next week, we plan on doing more specialized work instead of running in as many events,” Mincey said.
Next on the schedule for the Eagles is a trip to Winston Salem, N.C. where they will enter the Hilton Garden Invitational. This tournament will start on Friday, Feb. 1 and end on Saturday, Feb. 2.
Winston Salem, N.C. is also the home of the crucial Southern Conference Indoor Championships later in February.