LUBBOCK, Texas – The Texas Tech track and field program wrapped up competition Saturday in the annual Texas Tech Open meet inside the Athletic Training Center. The Red Raiders and Lady Raiders completed two full days of competition, and with it, officially kicked off the 2014 indoor season.
“There are always some great things, and it’s always an up-and-down kind of a meet,” Texas Tech head coach Wes Kittley said. “There were some good things, and I was a little disappointed in some things. We have 30 freshmen, or newcomers, and a lot of people that have never run at an indoor meet. This was an opportunity to not have a lot of pressure on ourselves, but to compete.”
Saturday’s events got off to a fast start as the Lady Raiders swept the top-two spots in the women’s 200-meter dash in the first event on the track. The duo was led by junior and returning outdoor All-American Cierra White who pulled away in the opening heat before crossing the finish line with a time of 23.83 seconds.
She was followed by teammate Amoy Blake who crossed in 24.68 seconds.
White’s time tied for No. 10 on the all-time Texas Tech indoor performance list. White clocked a 23.83 at the Armory Invitational in 2013, and also matched former Lady Raider Licretia Sibley’s time from 2005.
Sophomore Red Raider Joseph Richards III won the men’s 200-meter dash with a time of 21.75.
Meanwhile, junior thrower Kole Weldon competed in his second event of the weekend and picked up his second win of the meet in the process. After finishing first in the shot put competition Friday afternoon, Weldon won the weight throw Saturday with a career-best toss of 18.67-meters (61-feet 3 inches).
The Lady Raiders went on to sweep the top-3 spots in the women’s 400-meter dash led by Christen Rivers who won the event with a time of 54.01. Rivers was followed by teammates Montenae Roye-Speight in second (55.06) and Tiffany Tarver in third (56.86).
On Friday, Roye-Speight finished second in the 600-yard run with a time of 1:22.49 – which ranks No. 6 all-time at Texas Tech.
Red Raiders Josh Sonnen and Kyle Thompson took the top-two spots in the men’s pole vault. Sonnen, a sophomore, won the competition clearing 4.90-meters (16’-0.75”) on his first attempt. Thompson finished second clearing 4.80-meters (15’-9.00”) on his third attempt.
Junior Lady Raider Michaela Palu won the women’s high jump clearing 1.66-meters (5’-5.25”).
Capping off the meet, the Lady Raider 4x400 relay comprised of Roye-Speight, White, Blake and Christen Rivers finished first overall with a time of 3:37.80 – three seconds faster than their time in the 2013 season-opener.
The men’s 4x400 relay comprised of Richards III, Kyle Collins, Treyvion Johnson and Dwayne Extol finished third with a time of 10:41.62.
Texas Tech will travel to College Station next weekend to compete in the Texas A&M Triangular with LSU and the Aggies.