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SIUE Track and Field Opens Outdoor Competition at Arkansas

Greg Block
Greg Block

EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. – SIUE men's and women's track and field begins the outdoor season with a two-day meet at the Arkansas Spring Invitational.

Besides Julian Harvey, who competed in the NCAA Championships Mar. 11, both teams have taken a break from competition since the Ohio Valley Conference Championships Feb. 26-27.

"We gave the student-athletes some much-needed time off immediately following the conclusion of the indoor season," said SIUE Interim Head Coach Scott Block. "After the break we got right back to work since there are new events that are only competed outdoor.

 "There are several more events outdoor including the steeplechase, hammer throw, Javelin and 400 hurdles, so getting back into those events is important," continued Block. "The outdoor season has different challenges than indoor, the biggest one being the weather. We do our best to prepare to compete in any weather condition."

Both squads have added new faces since the indoor season. Returning OVC  hammer throw champion Greg Block returns to the outdoor season after taking a break over the winter. Jumper Brittney Gibbs returns to women's team after sitting out the indoor season. Freshmen jumper Nichyria Byrd and thrower Nick Matthews also will compete in their first outdoor season in an SIUE uniform.

"It is hard to say if the newcomers are full acclimated yet, but they are much more comfortable now than they were in January," said Block. "Outdoor is a whole different season with new events and challenges and we look for them to develop as the season goes on."

Events begin Friday at 5 p.m. on the John McDonnell Field.