Runners excel at invitational

The Florida A&M University’s men’s and women’s track team raced across the tracks of Tallahassee to take on numerous opponents at the 2009 Seminole Invitational at Florida State.

The meet was an opportunity for talented competitors to display their record breaking speed and running abilities.

Demetrius Carroll, 21, a 3rd year criminal justice student from Tallahassee said he and his teammates came out and did their best.

“I feel like we all did our best as a team everyone had a particular goal that they wanted achieve and most of us achieved that goal,” Carroll said.

Carroll also said he feels like he did well but he still has to make his goal of coming in 13th place in the MEAC championship.

Both men’s and women’s team had many athletes who took top honors among these strong competitors in this meet.

Some athletes who stood out in this meet included Damarius Carroll who qualified for the NCAA Regional meet.

With a qualifying time of 14.29 seconds in the men’s 110m hurdles he placed second.    
Rattler Mike White’s win in the men’s pole vault with a final distance of  (15 feet, 1 inch) also contributed to the teams points.

“The day before the meet my coach just told me to stay focused on running a good race and not to worry about the time as much. That is exactly what I did,”  Carroll said.
Daquam Lee finished third in the men’s 800m competition with a  finishing time of (1:51.15). McKenzie and Craig Scott placed fourth and fifth in the men’s 100 meters.

“I feel like I did pretty good  at this meet and as a team we finished in the top two which is a very good thing” said Carl Mckenzie 21, a junior criminal justice  student from Atlanta.
Mckenzie also said at this meet that the Rattlers were more focused and relaxed.

The men’s 4×4 team ran a 3:16 with an alternate leg, and so far two players have made it to the regional competition.

The women also came to the track with winning on their minds.

Suelyn Pilliner took first in the women’s high jump contributing to the teams points for the women’s. The ladies said that as a team they feel as though they improved.

“Our coach just told us to believe in ourselves and execute, we are just going to continue to apply what we have been taught in the race,” said Jessika Forbes 22, a fourth year pharmacy student from Tallahassee.

Forbes also said that she ran her best time ever and is still working on improving her overall time.

Other ladies who took top places in this meet were Tomika Story  who placed second in the women’s triple jump with a final distance of (38 feet, 8 inches) and  Ashley Gillis who placed  second in both the 100 meter  running the event in (11.85) and finishing the 200 meters in (24.29).

The next meet for both teams will be this Friday and Saturday as they hit the road to travel to Auburn.

“Our next meet is at Aurburn and our plan is to get more people qualified for the regional meet,” Carroll said.