Women's Track and Field

Track & Field Returns for 2019 Debut at Great Dane Invitational Saturday

PHILADELPHIA – The Temple University track and field squad has returned to campus and is set to race into the 2019 portion of the indoor season. The Owls will head back to Ocean Breeze this Saturday, January 12 to get their first marks of the New Year at the 15th annual Great Dane Classic. After hitting the track twice in December, the team looks to continue its success while bringing multiple new Owls into the mix this season.
About the Great Dane Classic
> The 15th annual Great Dane Classic, hosted by the University of Albany track and field team, will be held at the Ocean Breeze Complex on Staten Island for the third straight year.
> 23 Owls will head to Staten Island to get the ball rolling on the indoor season. The meet will feature Cherry and White in 14 different events and will highlight multiple student-athletes getting their first marks of the season.
Scouting the Owls
> The Temple track and field squad kicked off its fifth season under the direction of head coach Elvis Forde. This year, the team returned 17 student-athletes and added eight talented newcomers to help bring the program to new heights.
> The Owls had a record-breaking 2017-18 indoor season, earning their highest-ever team finish of sixth at the American Athletic Conference Championships. The conference meet was highlighted by Millie Howard earning gold in the mile and two top-three finishes from Grace Moore. At the conference meet, the DMR of Howard, Sydney Williams, Lucy Jones and Katie Pinson broke the school record and earned a spot on the podium with a bronze medal.
> The Temple track and field team is captained by Crystal Jones, Katie Leisher and Grace Moore.
Last Time Out
> Temple returns to the track after a five week hiatus from competition over the holidays. For their final meet in 2018, the squad traveled to Staten Island, N.Y. to compete at the Seahawk Shootout, which highlighted 15 top 10 finishes from the Owls and multiple individual victories on the day.
> The Cherry and White dominated the 300 meter run, sweeping the top three and putting four in the top 10 out of 45 runners. Freshman Marissa White captured her second victory of the season, winning the 300 with a time of 39.75. Near behind White was junior Madison Beecher, who took second overall with a personal best of 40.62. Fellow junior Ebonee Jackson followed, crossing the finish line with a time of 40.98 to earn bronze in the event.
> Temple shined again in the 1000 meter run with a first and second place finish. Senior Ashton Dunkley secured gold with a personal record of 3:02.36, knocking nearly four seconds off of her previous time. Sophomore McKenzie Gelvin was neck-and-neck with her teammate, finishing second with a time of 3:02.51 in her first career 1000m.
> Junior Kira Von Ehren hit the track for her first race in Cherry and White after a standout cross country season in the fall. The Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany native won the event by over 40 seconds, dominating the competition with a time of 9:47.12.
> Sophomore Kayla Nesbitt-McEwen saw her first victory of the season in the long jump, finishing first overall after clearing 5.28m. Fellow sophomore Candus Burks finished second overall with a jump of 5.23m.
> The Owls saw another one-two in the high jump, with senior Crystal Jones winning the event and Nesbitt-McEwen trailing her by .05m. Jones won after clearing a height of 1.65m, with Nesbitt-McEwen taking silver with a height of 1.60m.
On the Lookout
> Sophomore Aisha Brown will spike up for the first time this year after a standout freshman season in the high jump. Outdoor, Brown earned All-AAC accolades after placing second in the high jump with a personal record of 1.82m, sending her to the NCAA East Regional meet. After a stellar freshman campaign, Brown finished the season ranked first in the east region.
> The Owls will see key returners Katie Leisher, Lucy Jones and Michelle Joyce on the track for the first time this season after a record-breaking cross country season. Leisher currently holds the school record in the 5000m (17.06.09) and returns as one of the teams' three seniors. Jones is a part of the record-holding DMR squad and holds the 3000m steeplechase record (10:39.36). Joyce is an All-Conference cross country performer who looks to make her mark on the track this season.
> Four fresh faces will debut this Saturday as Shay Strawser, Kennedy Culmer, Emma Seifried and Lexi Walsh will all run their first races in Cherry and White. Strawser, Seifried and Walsh were all members of the cross country team this past fall, and Culmer comes to North Broad from Freeport, Bahamas to make her mark in the sprints.
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