Track team set to open outdoor season at UT

Craig Vanderkam and Craig Vanderkam

A month following the Mid-American Conference Indoor Championships, the BG track team will transition from indoor to outdoor competition this weekend at the UT Collegiate Challenge. The Falcons will compete against conference rivals Toledo and Central Michigan. The triangular meet set-up means two athletes per event will score per team. Coach Cami Wells said the set-up differs from a larger invitational meet where the top eight score regardless of team. ‘In some areas this type of scoring helps us where we have less depth, but in other areas it hurts where we have more depth,’ Wells said. ‘Overall, it should even out in the end and be an interesting competition.’ The long hiatus from competition helped prepare and transition the team for outdoor events. ‘From training with a consistent environment like the indoor track to being outside where temperature, wind and weather conditions change day-to-day and sometimes hour-to-hour means we need to prepare for all those factors,’ Wells said. Wells said the team’s depth in throwing events makes the Falcons a better outdoor team. In addition, three athletes returning from redshirt seasons are eligible to join the team. Jamie Roflow, a senior, is the school record holder in the steeplechase and a two-time regional qualifier in the same event. Freshman Ashley Harris and Jessie Rowland will be looked upon to add depth in the throws, according to Wells. Barbara Powers, a sophomore, may return to outdoor competition, pending full recovery from an injury that occurred during the indoor season. Powers was the team’s track freshman athlete of last year and her return would help BG in distance running, Wells said. The Falcons placed 11th of 12 teams at the MAC Championships held Feb. 27 and 28. ‘I am happy with the effort the team has put into their training and competing so far this season,’ Wells said. ‘We have had several athletes excel in their event areas and the majority of the team has reached personal bests so far this year so the progress has been positive.’ She is hopeful the training will pay off starting this weekend. ‘Progress has been consistent and we just need to continue to focus on getting the most we can out of each day and each opportunity to continue to improve,’ Wells said. ‘