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42 Flames Bound for IC4A/ECAC Meet at Princeton
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Liberty will be very well-represented at the 2014 IC4A and ECAC Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships, as a group of 42 Flames and Lady Flames is slated to compete at Princeton's Weaver Track & Field Stadium, Friday through Sunday.
The 31st ECAC meet will begin Friday at noon with the heptathlon 100-meter hurdles. One hour later, the 138th IC4A meet will get started with the decathlon 100-meter dash. Saturday and Sunday's opening events are scheduled for 9 a.m. both days.
How to Follow the Flames and Lady Flames
Live results will be available throughout the meet, courtesy of Lancer Timing.
Additionally, periodic updates will be available on Twitter, via the Liberty Gameday (@LUGameday) account.
Friday's weather forecast in Princeton is rather foreboding, with heavy rain, potential thunderstorms and gusty breezes expected. However, Saturday and Sunday appear pleasant, with high temperatures projected for the low 70s and abundant sunshine in the forecast.
Liberty's IC4A Entrants
Tim Abbott – Shot Put, Discus
Aklesso Agama – Triple Jump
Jeremie Bourget – 10K
Jarred Cornfield – 4 x 800
Ryan Davis – 400 Hurdles, 4 x 400
Zach Davis – High Jump, Decathlon
Jacob DeValve – Shot Put, Javelin
Caleb Edmonds – 1,500, 5K
Steve Feister – Javelin
Stephen Hayes – 4 x 100
Sam Hibbs – 10K
Trevor Hope – 4 x 800
Daniel Klase – Javelin
Josh MacDonald – Steeplechase
Tevan McIntire – Decathlon
Jacob Onifer – 4 x 800
Stephen Racanelli – 100, 200, 4 x 100, 4 x 400
Ken Ritchey – Pole Vault
Colin Schultz – 4 x 400, 4 x 800
Kenny Scott – 4 x 100, Long Jump
David Scouten – Shot Put, Discus, Hammer
John Sherret – 800, 4 x 400, 4 x 800
ConRoy Smith – 100, 4 x 100, 4 x 400
Constand Van Rooyen – Shot Put
Tyler Weigandt – 4 x 400
Tarell Williams – 4 x 100
Liberty's ECAC Entrants
Rachel Barnes – Shot Put
Corinn Bedell – 4 x 100, 4 x 400
Riley Brandon – Heptathlon
Meghan Burggraf – 800, 4 x 400
Jacy Christiansen – 5K
Mary Echols – 4 x 400
Abigail Flower – 100, 200, 4 x 100
Kate Flower – 4 x 100
Ansley Gebben – 400 Hurdles, 4 x 400
Oasis Hernandez – 100, 4 x 100, Triple Jump
Erika Jackson – Heptathlon
Janae Jones – Triple Jump, 4 x 400
Jennifer Nicholson – Discus
Melissa Rohwer – Triple Jump
Rajon Stinnett-Perry – 4 x 100
Mary Witmer – 400 Hurdles, 4 x 400
What Do These Letters Stand For?
The acronym ECAC is short for Eastern College Athletic Conference. According to the ECAC website, it "is the nation's largest athletic conference and only multi-divisional conference, with approximately 300 member institutions ranging across 16 states from Maine to North Carolina and westerly to Illinois." This weekend's women's meet is officially titled the ECAC Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championship.
Meanwhile, the concurrent men's meet is called the IC4A Outdoor Track & Field Championship. IC4A stands for Intercollegiate Association of Amateur Athletes of America, and the name is only applied to the ECAC's Division I men's championships in cross country, indoor track & field and outdoor track & field.
Top Team Finishes
Liberty will hope for a repeat of its successful showing at the 2014 IC4A and ECAC Division I Indoor Track & Field Championships in Boston, where the Lady Flames finished third in the ECAC standings and the Flames posted a fourth-place IC4A finish. Third place represented Liberty's highest-ever team finish at an ECAC championship event.
The Liberty men's squad, which placed fifth a year ago, will aim for its sixth top-five finish in the last eight IC4A outdoor meets. The Flames are three-time IC4A outdoor champions (1996, 2007 & 2008) and seven-time runners-up (1994, 1995, 1997, 1999, 2000, 2009 & 2010).
Meanwhile, the Lady Flames' best-ever ECAC outdoor team placement is seventh, achieved in both 2007 and 2012.
Burggraf has enjoyed a stellar senior season to date, sweeping the Big South indoor and outdoor women's 800-meter titles to go along with her ECAC indoor 800 crown. She will now attempt to become the first Lady Flame to capture ECAC championships in corresponding indoor and outdoor events in the same year since 2005. That season, Danielle McNaney was victorious in the ECAC indoor pentathlon and outdoor heptathlon.
MacDonald has also fared well as a senior, highlighted by his first career Big South men's steeplechase crown. He will now aim to defend his IC4A steeplechase title on Friday. The last Liberty athlete to win back-to-back IC4A championships in an event was Sam Chelanga, who placed first in the 5K at the 2009 and 2010 IC4A outdoor meets.
Big South's Best
Liberty athletes won 11 individual event titles at the 2014 Big South Outdoor Track & Field Championships, last month in Rock Hill, S.C. All 11 Big South champions will compete in the same events this weekend, including ConRoy Smith (men's 100), Caleb Edmonds (men's 1,500), Ryan Davis (men's 400 hurdles), Josh MacDonald (men's steeplechase), Jacob DeValve (men's shot put), David Scouten (men's discus), Meghan Burggraf (women's 800), Jacy Christiansen (women's 5K), Janae Jones (women's triple jump), Jennifer Nicholson (women's discus) and Riley Brandon (heptathlon).
Last season, Mychelle Cumings (women's discus) and Isaac Wendland (men's 1,500) each swept the Big South and ECAC/IC4A outdoor championships in their respective events.
Entry lists for the meet will not be available until Friday, but a number of Flames and Lady Flames rank within the top 20 of their respective events on the yearly ECAC/IC4A performance lists entering the weekend.
On the IC4A list, ConRoy Smith is tied for fourth in the 100 (10.45), Josh MacDonald ranks eighth in the steeplechase (8:54.07) and Zach Davis is tied for 12th in the high jump (7-0.25). Meanwhile, the Flames sit at No. 11 in the 4 x 800 relay (7:29.15) and tied for No. 12 in the 4 x 100 relay (40.84).
In the ECAC, Jennifer Nicholson is tied for ninth in the discus (164-11), Oasis Hernandez (41-0.5) and Janae Jones (41-0.25) are 15th and 16th, respectively, in the triple jump and Meghan Burggraf is listed 16th in the 800 (2:06.84).
Last Call for Jacksonville
Sunday represents the last day athletes can post qualifying marks for the 2014 NCAA Division I East Preliminary Round meet, slated for May 29-31 in Jacksonville, Fla. At this point, Josh MacDonald (men's steeplechase), Caleb Edmonds (men's 5K), Zach Davis (men's high jump), Meghan Burggraf (women's 800) and Jennifer Nicholson (women's discus) all appear to be Jacksonville bound.
All other Flames and Lady Flames will be attempting to climb the NCAA East Region performance list in their respective events this weekend. The group of 48 Preliminary Round qualifiers for each event will be announced on May 22.
Liberty has featured a strong freshman class in 2014, three of whom (Zach Davis, Oasis Hernandez and Mary Witmer) aspire to compete at this summer's USATF Junior Outdoor Track & Field Championships.
Davis has already qualified in the men's high jump, while Hernandez has achieved the women's triple jump standard. This weekend, Davis will be shooting for the decathlon standard of 6,500 points and Witmer will aim for the women's 400 hurdles standard of 1:01.34.
The USATF Junior Outdoor heptathlon and decathlon will be contested June 25-26 in Sacramento, Calif. All other events will take place at Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore., July 5-6.
Tradition of Excellence
Liberty will be well-represented in the ECAC heptathlon and IC4A decathlon, two events where it has a rich tradition at this meet. The Flames have captured 12 IC4A decathlon titles and two ECAC heptathlon crowns in meet history.
At this year's IC4A indoor meet, McIntire came in fifth in the heptathlon, while Brandon finished fifth in the ECAC pentathlon competition.
Liberty's most recent multi-event championships at this meet came in 2011, when Geren Woodbridge claimed the IC4A decathlon title and Christina Mitchell earned the ECAC heptathlon crown.