Feb. 22, 2018
QUEENS, N.Y. - Starting training in September for this meet, the St. John’s track and field team will compete in the 2018 BIG EAST Indoor Track and Field Championships Presented by the Jeep Brand on Friday and Saturday.
Headquartered from the state-of-the-art Ocean Breeze Track and Field Athletic Complex in Staten Island, the Red Storm will battle against all of its conference rivals.
“We are looking forward to the BIG EAST Championship this weekend at Ocean Breeze,” said St. John’s head coach Jim Hurt. “Our team has worked hard since September, and the two days will be exciting and challenging as we drive towards a podium finish.”
The events will begin on Friday morning with the women’s pentathlon at 9 a.m., and running all through the weekend. Saturday’s showcase is slated for a 10 a.m. start.
The Johnnies will be led by a pair of seniors who are look to defend their crowns in Maya Stephens and Nyla Woods. The duo both enter as the reigning conference title holders in 400-meter dash and the weight throw, respectively.
This season, Stephens sits third in the Northeast Region in the 400-meter run with a season-best time of 54.29, while Woods leads the region in the weight throw at 19.63 meters.
St. John’s also sends one of the region’s top relay teams to the track, as Torisha LaForce, Leah Anderson, Kafi Ottley, and Stephens have consistently improved as the season rolls along. The group ran as 2018-best 3:45.63 at the Metropolitan Championships the last time they ran at Ocean Breeze.
Anderson has burst onto the scene as a freshman for the Red Storm this season, providing a jump in the 200-meter dash this season by winning the event a trio of times this season, and finishing in the top-5 in every run.
Denesha Ransome leads a sprinter group comprised of Destiny Davis, Beverly Val-Addo, and Ottley in the 60-meter dash, while Stephens, Davis, Anderson, and Ransome go for the gold in the 200-meter dash.
Tiffany Perrier and Shannon Page will compete in the 800-meter run for the Johnnies, and LaForce, Stephens, Anderson, and Ottley team up again for the 400-meter dash.
Coach Hurt is also counting on his long-distance group to score the Johnnies on the weekend as Stephanie Gerland, Melissa Hidalgo, and Nicole McCarthy look to build off their solid cross country seasons and put points on the board.
Moving into the field events, Antonia Frazier will take to the 60-meter hurdles, high jump, and long jump for the Red Storm and is joined by Chenoa Sebastian in the hurdles, Lillith Ida, Danica Wens, and Elefthreria Christogeorgou in the high jump, and Erica Graham, Myaysa Evans, and Anointing Onuoha in the long jump.
After breaking a school record earlier in the season, Sophia Alter leads the Johnnies into the pole vault, and will be accompanied by Gabriella Kelly.
In the shot put, Eboni Birch, Amarys Berry, and Bernadette McGowan will join Woods to lead Coach McCree’s squad. The group will also compete in the weight throw along with Jennifer Odoemene.
St. John’s will compete in the ECAC Championships on Mar. 3-4 in Boston University following this weekend’s meet.