BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Senior Lisa Wickham and Freshman Lyn'Nikka Vance highlighted the Golden Eagles season-opener at the Blazer Invitational at the Birmingham Crossplex on Friday, hosted by the University of Alabama Birmingham.
"Our team did a great job bringing energy and enthusiasm to our first meet of the season," expressed head coach Peter Dalton. "We had a great showing today for having a younger roster. We will keep building throughout January and February as we train and develop to be a contender at the OVC Championships."
Wickham is already off to a stellar start to begin the new season, surpassing the school record of 7.40 seconds, which she set last season, in the 60-meter with an impressive fourth-place finish. She opened the day with a record-breaking 7.34 performance to qualify for the 60-meter finals, before turning in a blazing 7.32-second performance to shave off a full eight tenths off the school record.
Vance led the Golden Eagles to their best finish of the Birmingham Invitational in her collegiate debut, claiming a runner-up finish in the long jump. Vance qualified for the finals with a 5.73m performance but topped that in the finals with an impressive mark of 5.79m. Her stellar 5.79m mark came just eleven hundredths off the school record.
Junior Keyanna Word also turned in an impressive performance for the Golden Eagles as she set a new personal record in the shot put with a distance of 9.54m. While freshman Jalena Curbeam also turned in a promising performance in her collegiate debut in the triple jump.
Junior Ceirra Tate also posted an impressive performance to open the indoor season. Tate claimed a ninth-place finish as she turned in a time of 1:20.05 in the 500-meter.
Freshman Nancy Jesang also posted a solid performance in her first collegiate race, competing in the mile. Jesang finished 14th and turned in a time of 5:24.68.
In a pair of off-distance races, sophomore Alexa Brugere and freshman Chanel Bishop turned in promising performances in the 600-meter and 300-meter, respectively. Both Brugere's and Bishop's performances were a solid start to the young season.
The Golden Eagles capped off the day with good performance in the 4x400-meter relay. Junior Teauna Anderson, along with Freshmen Bryana Brown and Anya Akili, and sophomore anchor Jordan Toney all returned for their second race of the day and ran well to close out the day's competition.
The Golden Eagles will take the next two weeks off before returning to action on Jan. 31 with a trip to Johnson City for the Bucaneer Invitational, hosted by East Tennessee State.