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Bison Look to Make Statement in Upcoming PAC Track & Field Championships

April 24 – BETHANY, W.Va. – The Bethany track & field teams are looking to make a big statement in the upcoming Presidents’ Athletic Conference Championships hosted by Westminster College. The festivities will begin on Friday, April 25 and then conclude on Saturday, April 26.

On the men’s side, expect to see sophomore Umar Moore (Coraopolis, Pa./Moon), sophomore Kyle Minger (Richmond, Ohio/Edison Local) and freshman Andre Butler (Poolesville, Md./Poolesville) spearhead the charge. Moore, who finished 14th at the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division-III Indoor Track & Field Championships in the triple jump in February, has been excellent in the outdoor campaign, registering six top-ten finishes in either the triple or long jump competitions. He has also qualified for the Eastern College Athletic Conference Championships in both events.

Minger, who was the PAC Indoor Champion in the 400 meter dash, has continued to show off his speed throughout the outdoor season, qualifying for the ECAC Championships in the 400 with a blazing time of 49.56 on March 29 in the Bobcat Open Classic.

Butler has shown his versatility during the campaign, competing in seven different events during the year. Perhaps his best event is the 400 meter dash, where he has posted two top-five finishes.

Others to keep an eye on include, junior Shawn Burns (Weirton, W.Va./Weir), sophomore Ryan Donnelly (Pittsburgh, Pa./Penn Hills) and junior Austin Williams (Euclid, Ohio/Euclid). Burns has done well in the sprint competitions (100 & 200), grabbing five top-ten finishes. Donnelly has been consistent in the 3,000, 5,000 and 10,000 meter runs, as he holds the conference’s best time in the 10,000 (32:57.95). Williams, who was the PAC Indoor Champion in the 60 meter hurdles, will look to use that success in the 110 meter hurdles.

The 4x100 and 4x400 relay teams are also looking to make a splash. The 4x100 team, consisting of freshman Georgio Cineus (Suffern, N.Y./Suffern), Moore, Butler and Burns enters the meet with the races top-qualifying time (43.12), which was set on April 16 at the PAC South Quad Meet. The 4x400 team, consisting of Butler, freshman Wesley Scott (Kingwood, W.Va./Preston), junior Dillon Handy (Alliance, Ohio/Alliance) and Minger will enter with the second fastest qualifying-time (3:27.57).

On the women’s side, senior Paige Prato (Gibsonia, Pa./Deer Lakes), sophomore Maria Jackson-McBride (Spotsylvania, Va./West Potomac), sophomore Heather Grinkley (Woodbridge, Va./C.D. Hylton) and freshman Lauren Rao (North Tonawanda, N.Y./Sweet Home) all look to capture conference crowns. Prato, who enters the Championships with the second fastest time in the 100 meter dash (12.48) and third fastest in the 200 (26.55), has done well in her final campaign. Overall, she has notched six top-five finishes between the two events and has qualified for the ECAC Championships in the 100.

Jackson-McBride is looking to do well in the 400 meter dash, as she enters with the fourth-best time (1:00.50), which she set on April l1 at the Westminster Invitational. In addition, she will also aim to place high in the 200 meter dash, entering with one of the top times in the event.

Grinkley has shown that she can do just about everything, as she has competed in five different events during the year. Arguably her best event has been the triple jump, where she has posted two top-three finishes.

Rao will look to finish her first year strong, as she will be a contender in the 100, 200 and high jump competitions.  

The 4x100 and 4x400 relay teams will also look to grab first-place finishes. The 4x100 team, which enters with the league’s top time (49.36), consists of Grinkley, Jackson-McBride, Kiera Goolsby (Washington, Pa./Washington) and Prato. The 4x400 team, consisting of Prato, Goolsby, Rao and Jackson-McBride, enter with the fourth best qualifying-time (4:13.43).

Follow all of the live action at the links below:

Live Stats - http://pacathletics.org/news/2014/4/23/MTRACK_0423140152.aspx

Schedule of events - http://pacathletics.org/sports/2014/4/17/outdoor-track-champs-schedule-14.aspx?id=497&

Heat Sheet - http://pacathletics.org/documents/2014/4/24/TRACK_PAC_Heat%20Sheet_2014_html.htm