West Coast Weekend on Tap for T&F at Stanford Invitational, San Francisco State Distance Carnival

TULANEGREENWAVE.COM Sophomore Lilla McMillan will compete in the 200 and 400 meter dash races at the Stanford Invitational
Sophomore Lilla McMillan will compete in the 200 and 400 meter dash races at the Stanford Invitational

April 3, 2014

NEW ORLEANS - Tulane's track and field program is headed out west for one of their bigger challenges of the season on Friday and Saturday as a majority of the team will compete in the Stanford Invitational in Stanford, Calif. at Cobb Track and Angell Field while many of the team's distance runners will take part in the San Francisco State Distance Carnival at Cox Stadium in San Francisco.

Live results for both meets will be made available through links on the TulaneGreenWave.com track and field schedule page. Results from each meet will be made available at the conclusion of the competitions on TulaneGreenWave.com.

The trip out west will be a change of pace for the Green Wave who spent the first three weekends of the season in Alabama and Mississippi before hosting the Tulane Team Challenge at Tad Gormley Stadium last weekend. The Stanford Invitational, one of the oldest and most respected meets in the nation, is in its 39th year and 30th consecutive year, and over 100 four-year colleges will send athletes to the competition.

"I feel very good about the opportunity that our kids have to be really challenged at a high level," said Tulane track and field director Eric Peterson. "In the invitational sections, we have Daliadiz (Ortiz) in the javelin. Joanna Lapucha in the pole vault, three triple jumpers, Devon (Breaux) in the long jump and Caleb (Bertrand) in the pole vault, Taylor (Potts) in the shot put and Tamika (Brazzel) in the long jump. I'm very excited that we will be able to be challenged while we try to improve. We obviously want to occasionally give our kids the opportunity to compete outside of our regional area so they can see where we stack up against other talented athletes from around the country. I hope our kids will take advantage of these tremendous opportunities."



Against some of the top competition in the nation, Tulane is sending some of their best student-athletes to Stanford. In that group will be sprinter Lilla McMillan; middle distance runner Jessica Adamson; long distance runner Paige Callahan; pole vaulters Lapucha, Mary Carson Pitts, Emma Staisloff and Jessica Knierim; triple jumpers Estefany Cruz and Tamika Brazzel; Potts and Ortiz. All of the aforementioned competitors are in the top eight in Conference USA in their respective events, although some will branch out and compete in other events over the weekend.

Cruz and McMillan enhanced their spots in the league standings last week at Tad Gormley stadium in the triple jump and 100 meter dash, respectively. Cruz posted a jump of 12.69 meters (41-7.75), which puts the redshirt junior in second place in the league standings. McMillan is also in second place in the 100 meter dash after an 11.71 finish in the event last weekend, but the Mill Valley, Calif., native will compete in the longer 200 meter and 400 meter runs in California.

Cruz will be joined in the triple jump by Brazzel - who owns the sixth-best jump in the league with a 12.43 meter (40-9.5) leap - and senior Briana Santiago. Last weekend, Santiago set a season-high leap in the triple jump with a 12.02 meter (39-5.25) jump that ranked second at the Tulane Team Challenge.

Ortiz remains in first place in the league in the javelin for her performance in the season-opener at the Jaguar Opener. Last weekend, the redshirt freshman won the event title in the javelin with a throw of 47.53 meters (155-11), her shortest throw on the year.

Lapucha and Pitts are tied for third in the league standings in the pole vault after posting identical 3.87 meter (12-8.25) jumps at the Alabama Relays. Knierim tied her personal best last weekend with a leap of 3.81 meters (12-6), good for fifth place in C-USA. Staisloff sits in sixth place in the league with a 3.72 meter (12-2.5) leap from the Alabama Relays.

Lapucha will compete in the invitational portion of the event, while the other three will remain in the collegiate portion.

Callahan posted C-USA's sixth-best 5,000 meter run at the Alabama Relays two weekends ago, but will double her distance over the weekend as she will take part in the 10,000 meter run. Potts owns the league's seventh-best shot put toss of 13.71 meters (44-11.75), set at the Southern Miss Invitational on March 15.

On the men's side, the Green Wave will have a pole vaulter, some sprinters and the 4 x 100 meter relay team will look to build on their early top-eight league rankings.

Freshman pole vaulter Caleb Bertrand will look to increase his standing in the league, where he is currently ranked fourth. The Elton, La., native owns a 4.85 meter (15-11) leap, set at the Alabama Relays. Last weekend, he placed second at the Tulane Team Challenge with a jump of 4.73 meters (15-6.25).

Two freshman sprinters, who double as football players, in Sherman Badie and Richard Allen rank seventh and eighth, respectively, in the 100 meter dash in the league after posting times of 10.72 and 10.73 last weekend in their individual event collegiate track debuts. Those two will also team up with junior senior Christopher Arechiga and junior Taurean Nixon in the 4 x 100 meter relay. Last weekend, the quartet posted a time of 41.14, good for one of the top spots in Tulane history, as well as a top eight spot in the current league standings.

Sophomore long jumper Devon Breaux will take part in the invitational competition over the weekend. Last weekend, Breaux fouled at the Tulane Team Challenge in his individual event season debut. Last year, Breaux qualified and competed in the NCAA East Regionals in the event.

In San Francisco, some of the team's middle distance runners will take place in the Distance Carnival that has been around since 2008. Adamson will perform double-duty this weekend, as she is set to compete in both meets. Freshman Sara Kebede and junior Michelle Kreutzberg - both of whom rank in the top-eight in the league's 800 meter rankings - will also take part in the 800 meter alongside Adamson.

"I feel like we've seen three athletes on the women's side develop a healthy and competitive spirit in the 800 meters, and it has made them all better," added Peterson. "I see it in practice every day. We are beginning to see it in competitions. This is an event that we are going to be strong in moving forward, and it's because these three are laying the groundwork."

Sophomore Jack White and freshman Kade Kistner will also compete in the 800 meter run in the Distance Carnival. White is ranked at seventh in the league standings for the 800 meter run with a time of 1:53.65. Kistner is on the outside, looking in, as he currently sits at 10th in the league rankings.

Fans can follow the Tulane track and field programs on Twitter (@GreenWaveXCTF) or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/TulaneXCTF.

Tulane Entries for the Stanford Invitational

Women's 200 Meter Dash
Lilla McMillan
Hilary Woods

Women's 400 Meter Dash
Lilla McMillan
Hilary Woods

Women's 800 Meter Run
Jessica Adamson

Women's 10,000 Meter Run
Paige Callahan

Women's Long Jump Invitational
Tamika Brazzel

Women's Triple Jump Invitational
Tamika Brazzel
Estefany Cruz
Briana Santiago

Women's Pole Vault
Jessica Knierim
Mary Carson Pitts
Emma Staisloff

Women's Pole Vault Invitational
Joanna Lapucha

Women's Javelin Throw Invitational
Daliadiz Ortiz

Women's Shot Put Invitational
Taylor Potts


Men's 100 Meter Dash
Richard Allen
Sherman Badie
Taurean Nixon

Men's 200 Meter Dash
Richard Allen

Men's 400 Meter Dash
Christopher Arechiga
John Mouton

Men's 400 Meter Hurdles
Justyn Shackleford

Men's 4 x 100 Meter Relay
Tulane (Badie, Allen, Arechiga, Nixon)

Men's Long Jump Invitational
Devon Breaux

Men's Pole Vault Invitational
Caleb Bertrand

Men's Discus Throw
Thomas Lynch

Tulane Entries for the San Francisco State Distance Carnival


Women's 800 Meter Run
Jessica Adamson
Sara Kebede
Michelle Kreutzberg


Men's 1,500 Meter Run
Kade Kistner
Jack White