Saturday, the Florida A&M track teams will be traveling to Troy University for their final meet of the regular season. Coming off a season where most of the high expectations for the teams were met, the Rattlers look to continue their rise in the regional standings, and the fall in their personal times.
In meets as recent as their last, the University of South Alabama (USA) Invitational, the teams have been on a consistent tear with dropping times, and clawing their way into relevance in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) standings. The atmosphere for the Troy will be no different.
The teams aspire to use this meet to boost their already high confidence for the upcoming MEAC outdoor championships.
“At this meet, I hope to PR (Personal Record) again,” Brandon Hartley said. “My current best is a 53.02, which came at the FSU relays, and that was a while ago. If I run a 52 this meet I can go up in the regional standings and be ready for the MEAC.”
Jeanette Hulse used the USA invitational to help gain momentum in her quest for a top ten MEAC finish. She only ran one event, but made it count by posting her season’s top time.
“Although I only ran the one event (400-meter run) I posted a 56.76 which is my PR for the season,” Hulse said. “Troy will be easier because I felt stronger this meet and I am stronger for the championships.”
The teams are trying not to look past their next meet, but the Troy meet will be used as the final test for the Rattlers before the MEAC championships. Unlike meets in the past this season, players will not be expected to run in events outside of their comfort zone.
According to head coach Darlene Moore, the athletes will only be running in their primary and secondary events in Troy, Ala.
The expectations of the team have not dwindled from the first meet of the season, and their goal is still to place in the championships. Coach Moore said the make-up of her teams give them a shot to do so.
“All season the teams have worked hard and stayed disciplined,” Moore said. “We are much more confident heading into these last two meets because the outdoor events play to our strengths.”
The current drive in the teams has the future looking promising in her eyes as well.
“We have great building blocks for next season as well,” Moore said. “With the athletes we have now who will be returning, the core of the program will be in tact for many MEAC championships to come.”