The Jacksonville University Women’s Track takes off in hopes for another standout season after previously winning the conference last year. When championships are won, the expectation level always increases and so far the athletes are showing no sign of disappointment with having two athletes top their event in the season opener.
The JU Women’s Track team has the expectations of helping each team member reach their maximum in abilities and always achieve new personal bests.
Their coach Ron Grigg plans to keep that level of greatness at it’s highest at all times.
“From the outside looking in, some may see our consecutive championships and think it is a given that we will win every year,” Grigg said. “But the truth is that both the coaches and the student-athletes must consistently work hard to remain in a position to win. While I feel that we have contributed significantly to raising the standard of excellence in all events in our conference, other coaches and programs have clearly responded by recruiting better student-athletes in an effort to challenge us.”
The athletes opened the season at Gainesville, which hosted the Jimmy Carnes Invitational. Charlene Charles, sophomore, broke her school record in the 55-meter hurdles, as well as the 800-meter. She also broke the record in shot put and high jump. All of this led to her winning the pentathlon with a school record of 3,906 points.
In addition to Charles’ success, Stacey Young, junior, placed second in the pentathlon with a total of 3,621 points after coming in second in the 55-meter hurdles and long jump and third in the high jump competition.
Charles’ efforts named her the Athletic Sun Conference Field Athlete the of Week and Coach Grigg felt it was well deserving.
“Charlene had a very nice season opening performance,” Grigg said. “Recognition for achievement is always welcomed, and while there can only be one athlete of the week, we had other excellent performances from Ronnisha Hall in the throws, and Joane Pierre in the middle distances.”
The ladies are continuing to leave no doubt and recently in their Sykes-Sabock Challenge Cup in State College, Pa. they broke the school record for the Distance Medley Relay with a time of 11:42.29. placing them in second for the event. The lady Dolphins take they’re act to East Tennessee State University for the first conference matchup of the season Saturday, Feb. 18.