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Liberty Track Bound for Penn Relays, Radford

April 22, 2015  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Steve Feister will throw the javelin at the Penn Relays on Saturday, four years after he won the Penn Relays high school boys javelin title.

Steve Feister will throw the javelin at the Penn Relays on Saturday, four years after he won the Penn Relays high school boys javelin title.

Penn Relays Schedule/Live Results

Penn Relays Video Streaming (FloPro)

Philadelphia Weather

Highlander Invitational Information Central

Highlander Invitational Schedule

Radford Weather

Liberty's track & field athletes will be divided between two different meets this weekend. A group of Flames and Lady Flames will compete at the 121st Penn Relays, Thursday through Saturday at Franklin Field in Philadelphia, Pa. Meanwhile, other Liberty competitors will take part in the Highlander Invitational, slated for Friday and Saturday at Cupp Stadium in Radford, Va.

Interestingly, the women's discus will be Liberty's first event at both meets. The Penn Relays women's discus competition will begin Thursday at 9 a.m., while the Highlander Invitational women's discus is set for Friday at noon.

How to Follow the Flames and Lady Flames
NBC Sports Network will provide two and a half hours of live coverage from the Penn Relays on Saturday, stretching from 12:30-3 p.m. If Liberty qualifies for finals in either the men's 4 x 100 relay or women's 4 x 200 relay, these events would fall within the television window.

Subscribers to FloTrack's FloPro can watch video streaming coverage of all three days of the Penn Relays.

Meanwhile, live results will be available throughout both the Penn Relays and Highlander Invitational.

Weather Report
The weather for the Penn Relays is projected to be dry but a bit cool. High temperatures in Philadelphia are forecasted for the mid 50s on Thursday and Friday and the low 60s on Saturday.

In Radford, the high temperature is expected to be around 60 degrees on both Friday and Saturday. Friday's forecast calls for quite a bit of sunshine, while Saturday brings a 70 percent chance of rain in the New River Valley.

Relay Runners
Appropriately, Liberty is entered in six different relay races at the Penn Relays, including the men's 4 x 100, 4 x 400, 4 x 800 and sprint medley, as well as the women's 4 x 100 and 4 x 200.

Six of Liberty's current relay school records were set at the Penn Relays. The list includes the men's 4 x 200 (1:24.23 in 2001), 4 x mile (16:40.57 in 1998) and shuttle hurdles (58.75 in 1999), along with the women's 4 x 200 (1:37.99 in 2008), 4 x 800 (8:59.48 in 1988) and distance medley (11:30.56 in 2008).

The Lady Flames have already set one program record in the relays this season, thanks to their 45.81 clocking at the Duke Invitational on April 11. With sisters Abigail and Kate Flower both running well, that mark and the 4 x 200 standard (1:37.99) could both be in jeopardy this weekend in Philadelphia.

On the men's side, the 4 x 800 record of 7:31.60 from the 2004 season appears to be the most vulnerable. The Flames clocked an indoor 4 x 800 time of 7:31.01 at the IC4A meet on March 8, and three of those four runners (Jacob Onifer, Trevor Hope and John Sherret) will compete in the event Saturday afternoon.

Keystone State Javelin
Pennsylvania natives Steve Feister (Columbia) and Daniel Klase (Birdsboro) will both get to throw the javelin in their home state at the Penn Relays, Saturday at 9 a.m.

Feister (221-11) and Klase (216-0) are the top two men's javelin throwers in the Big South this season and both appear poised to qualify for the NCAA Division I East Preliminary Round meet.

Feister has positive memories of the Penn Relays. As a senior at Hempfield High School, Feister was the 2011 Penn Relays high school boys javelin champion with a then personal-best mark of 211-5.

Jumpin' Jessie
Sophomore Jessie Glynn has been one of the Lady Flames' most improved athletes this season. The 2014 Highlander Invitational marked the first time in her collegiate career that she reached the 11-foot mark in the pole vault.

One year later, Glynn returns to the Highlander Invitational as the Big South women's pole vault leader at 12-5.5. Most recently, she cleared 12-5.5 to capture the Campbell Invitational title on Saturday, defeating High Point standouts Jill Marois and Alyssa Palenchar in the process.

The women's pole vault competition is slated for Friday at 2:30 p.m. at Radford.

Keeping Up with Ken
Junior Ken Ritchey will headline the Flames' men's pole vault crew at the Highlander Invitational on Friday afternoon.

Like Jessie Glynn on the women's side, Ritchey won the Campbell Invitational men's pole vault championship with a personal-best effort on Saturday. He cleared 16-6.75, finishing ahead of reigning Big South indoor and outdoor men's pole vault champion Austin Miller of High Point and marking the top pole vault effort by a Flame since 2012.

Big South's Best
Three weeks before the start of the 2015 Big South Outdoor Track & Field Championships, a number of Liberty athletes top the conference leaderboard in their respective events.

Liberty's No. 1 rankers in men's events include Aklesso Agama (long jump, 24-0.25 and triple jump, 49-10.5), Fred Fulton (shot put, 58-8 and discus, 180-2), Steve Feister (javelin, 221-11) and Zach Davis (decathlon, 7,049).

On the women's side, the Lady Flames' Big South leaders include Abigail Flower (100, 11.70 and 200, 23.90), Ednah Kurgat (5K, 16:49.00), Dana Mercer (long jump, 18-9.25), Jessie Glynn (pole vault, 12-5.5), Mychelle Cumings (shot put, 50-1.25 and discus, 163-9) and Audrey Bamford (heptathlon, 4,506).

Jumping Ahead to Jacksonville
The 2015 NCAA Division I East Preliminary Round meet will be contested at North Florida's Hodges Stadium in Jacksonville, Fla., May 28-30. Based upon past history, the following Flames and Lady Flames should be bound for Jacksonville.

Aklesso Agama – men's triple jump
Mychelle Cumings – women's shot put and discus
Steve Feister – men's javelin
Fred Fulton – men's shot put, discus and hammer
Daniel Klase – men's javelin
Ednah Kurgat – women's 10K