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Track & Field returns to Nashville for Vanderbilt Invitational

MT hopes to continue capital-city success

April 19, 2012 · Athletic Communications

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Blue Raider track and field teams will make their second visit of the outdoor season to the campus of Vanderbilt University as the squads take part in the Vanderbilt Invitational beginning Friday.

The competition is set to begin Friday at 3 p.m. CT with a number of field events including the men’s and women’s long jump. Friday’s action will conclude with the 5,000-meter runs which will begin at 7:20 p.m. The meet will resume Saturday at 10 a.m. with more field events before drawing to a close at 4 p.m. with the 4x400 relays. The complete meet schedule can be viewed here.

The Blue Raiders will be joined in Nashville by a number of state and regional schools including Arkansas State, Austin Peay, Eastern Illinois, Illinois State, Murray State, Tennessee, Tennessee State, Tennessee Tech and host Vanderbilt.

“This meet has always been a nice event for us,” said Middle Tennessee head coach Dean Hayes. “There is always good competition without being overcrowded with competitors and the facility is great. Our focus this weekend will be to continue to develop our relay teams and attempt to qualify some people for both the Sun Belt Championships and the NCAA Regionals.”

Roscoe Payne led the way for the Blue Raiders at last season’s competition, helping the squads pick up a total of five individual-event titles. The Flint, Mich., product took victory in the 110-meter and 400-meter hurdles with respective times of 14.49 and 51.99 seconds. Rosina Amenebede also had a nice day on the track, winning the women’s 100-meter hurdles in 13.64 seconds.

Payne and Amenebede will aim to have similar success at this season’s meet. Payne has amassed a trio of event titles this season and a total of five top-five individual event finishes. He also posted a personal-best time of 13.97 seconds in the 110-meter hurdles earlier this season at the Vanderbilt Black and Gold meet.

Amenebede meanwhile has been strong all over the track this year. Earlier this season in Nashville, the senior notched a pair of victories, taking both the 100 meters and 100-meter hurdle titles. She is fresh off a terrific weekend in Knoxville in which she finished fourth in the 100-meter hurdles and fifth in the long jump competition. The Ghana native also was a part of the winning 4x100-meter shuttle hurdles as well as the Blue Raider women’s 4x100-meter relay showcase team which placed fifth.

In addition to Payne and Amenebede, Middle Tennessee jumper Kameron Rory has claimed four top-five finishes this year as part of his successful 2012 campaign. The sophomore registered a personal-best measurement in the long jump last weekend at the Boston Moon Classic with a preliminary leap of 7.11 meters while eventually placing third in the competition. He also set a personal-best in the triple jump at the season-opening Rhodes Open Meet, jumping 45 feet, 7.75 inches (13.91 meters) which was good enough for a fourth-place finish.

Live statistics of this weekend’s meet can be followed here. Results of the meets will be posted on the teams’ Facebook and Twitter pages as soon as they become available this weekend. A full recap and results will be available on GoBlueRaiders.com on Friday and Saturday evening.

Follow the Blue Raider track and field teams on Twitter @MTTrackField and on Facebook at the MT Track & Field page. Also, stay up-to-date on the teams on the new Track & Field Notebook, which can be found here as well as linked on the Track & Field page on GoBlueRaiders.com.

Follow the Blue Raiders on Twitter @MTAthletics for continued updates.