By Meredith Ristic
The UNC Asheville Bulldogs will be back on the track this Friday and Saturday at the Raleigh Relays hosted by N.C. State.
“I’m really looking forward to this meet,” said head track and field coach, Jesse Norman. “We’re looking to run multiple teams in a couple different relays this weekend as it will give us a chance to work together as a team and have a lot of athletes involved.”
Asheville will have teams in the 4x400m relay, 4x800m relay and the 4x1500m relay.
“This meet will be a good chance for us to see teams that we don’t normally have the opportunity to see,” Norman commented. “This is one of the biggest meets on the East Coast, and will probably be the most competitive meet we see before conference.”
The Raleigh Relays will feature teams from multiple conferences including the SEC, ACC, BSC as well as a few unattached professional athletes.
“There are usually a few teams that come down from the Northeast and the Midwest that come for the warmer weather,” Norman said. “But more than the competition, it’s the weather that I think we need to be prepared for.”
Due to the caliber of the meet, the field events will run on minimum measurements.
“I think that the minimum marks are a good thing, it gives us a goal to shoot for,” Norman commented. “One thing that I’ve been preaching all week is to only focus on what we can control, not what a minimum measure might be. We have to execute the way we need too, regardless of a minimum mark.”
In addition to the introduction of relays, the Bulldogs will be looking for breakthrough performances this weekend.
“The sprints are where we want them to be right now, as well as a few field events, but we’re really looking to have a big weekend in our distance events, javelin and the horizontal jumps,” Norman said.
After an impressive weekend at Charlotte, the Bulldogs hope to continue building momentum in the meets leading up to conference.
“Kassie (Pierre) had a solid weekend in the 400m hurdles last weekend,” Norman commented. “We also had some strong marks in the throws, the high jump and the 5k. I’m looking forward to seeing more of that this weekend.”
The Bulldogs will kick off the weekend with the 3,000m steeplechase at 8:45 a.m. on Friday morning.