March 29, 2012
Storrs, Conn.- The University of Connecticut men’s track and field team will open their 2012 outdoor season this Saturday, March 31st. UConn will host its Husky Spring Invitational, which will take place at the George J. Sherman Family Sports Complex. The Huskies will begin the 2012 campaign with high hopes, as many of the team members finished the indoor season on the cusp of qualifying for nationals.
Head Coach Greg Roy jokingly commented,” This meet is an icebreaker and with the way the weather has been it may quite literally be an icebreaker”. Coach Roy referring to the recent unpredictable weather patterns.
UConn finished the 2012 Indoor season in a competitive fashion, coming in second at the IC4A Championships and finished ranked second in the Northeast Region. The team will look to rely on both a mix of youthful talent, as well as experience from its four captains senior Mike Alleman (Scotch Plains, NJ), senior Kyle Duggan (Staten Island, NY) and juniors Ben and Jake Waruch (Kerhonkson, NY).
Coach Roy excited about the upcoming season stated, “This meet is more important for our young athletes, as the team prepares to head to LSU next week for the Battle of The Bayou”.
There are several team members to watch this upcoming outdoor season, a number of who will be looking to climb higher into the national ranks.
Senior captain Mike Alleman (Scotch Plains, N.J.) is on the edge of qualifying for nationals. Alleman, who is ranked 40th nationally in shot put with a throw of 17.59 (57’ 8.5”), will try to make the best of the home advantage and look to take top honors this weekend. Alleman finished the indoor campaign ranked eighth in shot put in the Big East with a toss of 17.54m and finished second last year at the Spring Invitational.
Cody Unger (Oak Ridge, N.J.), a senior, also looks to improve his marks this outdoor season in the javelin. Unger, who won the Big East Championship last year with a throw of 70.19m, is currently ranked 24th nationally with a toss of 71.23m.
The defending Big East Champion 4x100 relay team is also excited to get the 2012 campaign going. Last year’s squad consisting of Kashif Moore, Kevin Smith (Harwinton,Conn.), Darnell Cummings (Millbrook, N.Y.) and Jesse Drinks (Ossinging, N.Y.), set a University of Connecticut record with a mark of 40.69 seconds. While Moore graduated, the rest of the squad will look to pick up the slack as they begin their championship defense.
The Huskies only have six meets until the BIG EAST Championships, which are held from May 4th- May 6th and will need to make every qualifying opportunity count.