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Nicholls track competed in first outdoor meet

March 12, 2018

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Nicholls track competed in first outdoor meet

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The Nicholls State University women’s track and field team competed in their first meet of the outdoor season last Saturday at the McNeese State Cowboys Relays in Lake Charles, LA.

The Colonels competed against 11 other teams at the meet, including three Southland Conference (SLC) competitors in McNeese State University, Northwestern State University and Southeastern Louisiana University. Nicholls finished with a tenth place overall ranking and a team score of 11.

Some highlights of the day included an impressive performance by the 4 x 800 relay team and a strong performance made by senior javelin thrower Ciera Eugene.

The 4 x 800 relay team included freshman Eleana Callejas, redshirt junior Taylor Douglas and seniors Emily Sauce and Hannah Naquin. The team finished in second place ahead of SLC competitors Northwestern and McNeese.

Their 9:46.40 finish included personal records from multiple runners, and was the sixth-best all-time finish in the event in program history.

In the javelin throw, Eugene placed tenth out of 21 competitors, with a distance of 35.58 meters.

Although this was not a personal record, this was Eugene’s strongest start. Freshman Meagan Brooks also participated, and earned 15th place with her 19.11-meter throw.

For the women’s track and field team, the first half of the spring semester is spent competing in indoor track, while the second half is dedicated to outdoor track. While the team’s training does not change drastically from the indoor to outdoor season, Taylor Douglas explained their training can now become more event-specific.

“We just build upon our indoor season, and we are staying really focused on our really hard training day each week. All of our days are pretty hard, but we have one day out of every week that is our hard training day,” Douglas said. “She [Head coach Stefanie Slekis] wants us to focus on getting better, and that’s why we focus really hard one day a week, because we are training specifically for certain events.”

According to Douglas, focusing on one or two events is a way for the Nicholls squad to be more competitive at meets, instead of using energy on multiple events per meet.

“We are a really small squad, so we don’t have that many athletes to run into the ground. We are trying to be competitive, and for us to be competitive, we need to focus on one event, not three or four events, because we have meets almost every weekend.”

Another main difference between the two seasons is the size of the track and the number of laps per event, Douglas said.

“It’s the same vibe at the indoor and outdoor meets, but in indoor, you have to run more laps because the indoor track is smaller than the outdoor track,” Douglas said. “It’s the same distance, but it feels longer because you’re running more laps.”

The Colonels will participate in four more meets this spring before they compete in the Southland Conference Championships, which is scheduled for May 12.

While their first meet only included two other SLC competitors, Nicholls will race against other conference opponents in the various meets throughout the outdoor season.

The Colonels will compete in the Louisiana Classic this Saturday, March 18, at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

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