Bearkats Show Early Season Dominance, Prepare for Houston Invitational

The Sam Houston State University track and field team hopes to continue their success in the indoor season at the Houston Invitational hosted by the University of Houston this Friday and Saturday.

The Bearkats swept the Southland Conference’s weekly awards after they dominated their season opener at the Texas A&M Invitational in College Station on Jan. 13 to 14.

Earning the awards include junior Camry Grigsby who was named women’s track athlete of the week, while senior Kristen Hanks was appointed field athlete. On the men’s side, junior Chris Jefferson was honored as men’s track athlete of the week and junior Tyler Adams was named field athlete.

Both teams took first place at the meet with the women earning 125 points and the men with 105.5 points. 14 freshmen also made their debuts as Bearkats at the event.

The women earned five first place finishers and 16 top-five finishes. Hanks took first place in shot put with a throw of 49 feet and one-fourth inches, while also setting a personal record in the weight throw with 51 feet and eight-and-one-fourth inches.

“Last invitational was a good way to start off the season,” Hanks said. “This tournament I’m going to aim for at least fifty in the shot put because I have been struggling technique wise but I plan to do better next weekend.”

Also earning top spots at the meet was Grisby in the 800 meter with a time of 2:17.49 and in the 4×400 meter relay with junior Kodii Church, senior Briana McCall and sophomore Jasmine Lewis.

Senior Hannah Callaway made her debut as a Bearkat with a first place win on pole vault with 12 feet, eight-and-one-fourth inches. Sophomore Margaret Lasalle followed behind Callaway with 12 feet, two-and-a-half inches.

Sophomore Tristy Allen also earned first place in triple jump with a leap of 39 feet, five inches. Notable performances from the women’s team include freshman Baylee Lara who made her Bearkat debut with a third place win in the 60-meter hurdles with 8.69 seconds and sophomore Yarixza Rivera earned third place in weight throw with 58 feet, five-and-three-fourth inches.

On the men’s side, junior Tyler Adams beat last seasons meet record in the high jump with a leap of 6 feet, ten-and-one-fourth inches. Adams was runner up in the Southland Conference in the event last season.

“This meet [Houston Invitational] I’m hoping to be more consistent with reaching my personal records in each of my events,” Adams said. “I want to at least jump 24 in the long jump and I hope all my training will pay off.”

Jefferson earned two top spots in his events. The junior earned the 60-meter title with 21.35 seconds and the 200-meter dash with 21.35. Junior Jeffery Moore also took first place in the 800 meter with a time of 1:52.72.

Notable mentions on the men’s team include senior Kalvin Singletary who set a personal record and earned a second place finish in the weight throw with a toss of 63 feet, one-and-a-half inches. Freshman Ethan Wood made his debut in orange with a second place finish in the 400-meter finals at 49.05 seconds.

The Bearkats will travel to the Houston this weekend to compete in the Houston Invitational at Yeoman Fieldhouse at the University of Houston. The event will begin on Jan. 27 and run through Jan. 28.

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