The State Hornet

Track and field teams set to begin Big Sky Indoor Championships

Sacramento+State+then-freshman+Artearra+Coffey%2C+left%2C+and+then-senior+Kristen+Robinson%2C+right%2C+sprint+in+the+women%27s+100-meter+hurdle+race+in+the+Mondo+Team+Challenge+April+1%2C+2017+at+Hornet+Stadium.+The+Hornets+will+compete+in+the+Big+Sky+Indoor+Championships+from+Thursday+to+Saturday+in+Flagstaff%2C+Arizona.
Sacramento State then-freshman Artearra Coffey, left, and then-senior Kristen Robinson, right, sprint in the women's 100-meter hurdle race in the Mondo Team Challenge April 1, 2017 at Hornet Stadium. The Hornets will compete in the Big Sky Indoor Championships from Thursday to Saturday in Flagstaff, Arizona.

Sacramento State then-freshman Artearra Coffey, left, and then-senior Kristen Robinson, right, sprint in the women's 100-meter hurdle race in the Mondo Team Challenge April 1, 2017 at Hornet Stadium. The Hornets will compete in the Big Sky Indoor Championships from Thursday to Saturday in Flagstaff, Arizona.

Andre Newell - The State Hornet

Andre Newell - The State Hornet

Sacramento State then-freshman Artearra Coffey, left, and then-senior Kristen Robinson, right, sprint in the women's 100-meter hurdle race in the Mondo Team Challenge April 1, 2017 at Hornet Stadium. The Hornets will compete in the Big Sky Indoor Championships from Thursday to Saturday in Flagstaff, Arizona.

Eric Jaramishian

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The Sacramento State track and field teams are wrapping up their indoor regular season as the program prepares for the Big Sky Indoor Championships from Thursday to Saturday in Flagstaff, Arizona.

Despite setbacks due to injuries and sickness, Sac State has enjoyed accomplishments from both individual athletes and the program as a whole.

The men’s team is ranked ninth in the West Region standings, which includes teams from California, Arizona, Washington and Oregon. The women’s team also cracked the top 15 with a 14th-place ranking.

“This is a good sign for us,” said Jeff Magley, the Sac State director of track and field. “As you get closer to the championships, you want to keep moving up in the rankings. We were able to do this despite a couple of key injuries, so we are going in the direction that we want to go in.”

These rankings have been earned with the help of some standout performances from a handful of indoor athletes. The New Mexico Collegiate Classic alone had eight Hornets achieve top-10 program marks in their respective events from Feb. 2-3.

One of those was sophomore Jah Strange, who set a new school record for the men’s indoor triple jump with a leap of 51 feet and three inches (51-03.50) on Feb. 3. Strange’s jump beat junior Darius Armstead’s 51-02.75 mark set last year and is currently ranked 24th in the nation.

Matthew Nobert – The State Hornet
Sacramento State junior Darius Armstead flies over the bar during the men’s high jump event at the Causeway Classic on April 21, 2017 at Toomey Field in Davis, California. Sac State will compete in the Big Sky Indoor Championships from Thursday to Saturday in Flagstaff, Arizona.

Sophomore Morgan Jones’ throw of 58-11.50 placed her fifth in the Sac State indoor history books in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Meanwhile, senior Danielle Brandon is currently going for the school record for indoor pole vault. At the New Mexico Collegiate Classic, she vaulted 13-04.25 which missed the school record by one inch.

She currently holds the school record for women’s outdoor pole vault at 13-06.25 and is ranked at the top of the indoor Big Sky Conference rankings this year.

“I’m not exactly at the height I want to be at, but I am ahead technique wise, and I am jumping on bigger poles this year,” Brandon said.

However, the New Mexico Collegiate Classic was not the only meet at which Sac State athletes have landed themselves in the the top 10 of the school record books.

Indoor junior hurdler Andre Lindsey ran the third fastest time in program history in the 60-meter hurdles at the Bronco Invitational on Jan. 20. His time of 8.01 seconds also secured him first place in the meet and he currently holds the fastest time in the Big Sky this season.

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“I want to build off the personal best that I hit at the beginning of the season and hopefully improve it within the next two weeks at the (Big Sky) Championships,” Lindsey said earlier in the month.

None of the six meets the Hornets have competed in so far have been scored in terms of team points, but the men’s and women’s teams — which were projected to finish third and second, respectively, in the Big Sky preseason poll on Jan. 4 — will be competing for titles come Thursday. The men’s team will be looking for its first indoor conference title since 2011 and the women will aim for their indoor conference championship since 2016.

“Going into any Big Sky Championships, our goal is to come away as the best team in the conference,” Magley said. “We are going to have an uphill battle this year with (Northern Arizona University) as our toughest competition in the conference.”

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