The Texas A&M University-Kingsville men’s and women’s track and field teams are looking to accomplish something that hasn’t been done since 1970. The goal for the team is to bring home the Lone Star Conference (LSC) title on their home track at Javelina Stadium when they host the LSC championship meet May 1-3. The team returns four national champions and nine All-Americans from last year’s team. The offseason for the Javelinas has been great according to Head Coach Ryan Dall. “Everything has been going great. We got a lot of good athletes that returned and we brought in some quality athletes as well,” he said. The men’s indoor team comes into the season with a preseason ranking of number five by the United States Track & Field Cross Country Coaches Association. The men’s team returns four national champions to the squad including Jeron Robinson who won the indoor and outdoor national title in the high jump with a school record of 7’5”. Robinson was also named the LSC outdoor field athlete of the year in 2013 and was a part of the all conference team. Jordan Yamoah returns to the team after a successful freshman season. Yamoah won the national championship in the pole vault for both indoor and outdoor competitions. C.J. Griggs returns to the team as the two time defending national champion in the outdoor triple jump. Griggs was also named to the LSC all conference team in 2013. Yamoah said the team has what it takes to win the conference title. “I feel that our goal is the same thing, to win conference and qualify for nationals,” said Yamoah. “I’d say for all of us in general we want to dominate this season. This year, we got everybody back so we are pretty stacked.” On the women’s team, they return a bevy of athletes that can compete and accumulate points for the overall team. Amber Perry returns to the team and is the two-time LSC champion in the outdoor 400m race. Amanda Haven returns as an All-American and placed fifth in the high jump at the national meet. Keke Sheppard is expected to contribute on the women’s side in the sprints and relays. Sheppard is a transfer from Wayland Baptist University. “The women’s team is definitely going to be strong. We don’t have quite the depth of the men’s team, but we definitely have a lot of talent,” Dall said. When it comes to the rest of the conference for both the men’s and women’s teams, they are expected to face some stiff competition through the course of the
season. Angelo State won both the men’s and women’s outdoor conference championships. West Texas A&M is expected to field strong teams in both indoor and outdoor competitions. “We are one of the toughest track conferences in the country without a doubt. It’s always tough competition,” Dall said. “You got to show up that day with your A-game if you’re going to be competing for that championship.” Coach Dall said fans will be on the edge of their seats when watching these athletes compete. “It will be exciting for the fans to come out, and you will see things you’ve probably never seen before,” he said. The Javelinas open the indoor track and field season when they travel to Lubbock, TX on January 31 to compete at Texas Tech University.