Clayton State men set to open 2012 outdoor track and field seasons
MORROW, Ga. – March 15, 2012 – Following a solid indoor season, the Clayton State Laker men's track and field team is ready for the start of the 2012 outdoor season. The squad opens the season this weekend with the Morehouse Relays in Atlanta.
Events begin on Friday with the 3,000-meter steeplechase, followed by the bulk of the events on Saturday. This is the first time since 2005 that Clayton State has competed in the Morehouse Relays. This is also the 16th season of men's outdoor track and field at Clayton State.
Relays, middle-distance and distance will be the key events this season for Clayton State and veteran head coach Mike Mead. The Lakers will run two distance medley relay teams this weekend in the hopes to improve on its outdoor school record. Experience is on the side of the Lakers this season as Clayton State boasts a roster that includes seven seniors.
One distance medley relay team will consist of seniors Albert Mong'ony, Shelby Russell and Edlin Veras and sophomore Charles Anderson while the second team will be made up with freshman Alex Foss, sophomore Russell Lawless, Junior Ayrton Azcue and senior Ricky Fort. The current Clayton State distance medley record is 10:24.60 set in 2004. The Lakers will also run the 4 x 400m relay that went 3:19.89 during the indoor season.
As strong as the relay events will be for the Lakers, so will be the distance events. Mong'ony and Foss aim for some strong times in the 5,000-meter run, while freshmen Tanner Thomason and Preston Valencia make their collegiate debuts in the 10,000-meter run while Lawless makes his 3,000-meter steeplechase debut. Anderson will compete in the 1,500-meter run.
Two more Laker freshmen will make their collegiate debuts in the middle-distance events. Devon Lawson will compete in the 400-meter dash, as will Dinero Nicholas in the 800-meter run. Fort will also compete in the 200-meter dash, while seniors Ryan Pugh and Matty Phillips will represent the Lakers in the 100-meter and 200-meter dash.