CHARLOTTE, N.C. (March 19, 2005) - The East Tennessee State University track and field team opened up the outdoor season with competition at the 49er Classic in Charlotte, N.C. on Friday and Saturday.
In the men's distance, ETSU had strong performances from Jordan Ladd (Lyn, Ontario) and Bernard Towett (Kericho, Kenya) in the 5,000 meters. Ladd placed seventh in the event with a time of 15:04.43, while Towett finished tenth with a time of 15:06.89.
"I'm pleased at their solid run for the two freshman," stated Head Coach David E. Walker. "They have a lot of room for improvement and am hoping that they can and will build upon this performance."
On the women's side, ETSU's MacKenzie LaBonte (Port Charlotte, Fla.), Maggie Hunter (Roanoke, Va.), and Ali Carney (Sevierville, Tenn.) all recorded lifetime bests in the 1,500 meters. The trio finished ninth (4:51.68), tenth (4:51.85), and eleventh (4:51.91) respectively.
"All three of these ladies ran well today," said Assistant Coach Michelle Byrne. "I'm excited at how Catherine Berry (ETSU's volunteer women's distance coach) is developing them. It's impressive for them to come out and run so well in the first meet of the outdoor season and for Ali it is especially important as it was her first collegiate meet."
In the high jump, Shane Estes (Maryville, Tenn.) and Anna Marie Ricciardi (Canfield, Ohio) continued their strong performances from the indoor season with top-ten finishes. Estes tied for ninth with a mark of 1.90m, while Ricciardi finished fourth with a mark of 1.65m.
"Both Shane and Anna are working with Jason Farr (ETSU's volunteer high jump coach) on technical changes to jump even higher this outdoor season," stated Byrne. "Today we saw them execute some of those changes and I hope that progress will continue. Overall, it was a good season opener for both of them."
The Bucs continue outdoor competition next weekend March 25 and 26 at the Raleigh Relays hosted by North Carolina State University.