FAIRFAX, Va. – The indoor track and field season is just beginning and Georgetown is wasting no time accumulating championship qualifying times and demonstrating what makes this program one of the nation’s best.

Last weekend, the men’s and women’s teams sent athletes to meets at George Mason and Rutgers, and, this early in the season, expectations were that the unscored events would provide an opportunity for athletes to shed any rust accumulated over the winter layoff and build momentum for meets later in the season.

But with the help of some especially stiff competition, the Hoyas did all that and more. The University of South Carolina’s world-class 400m runners and a group of recently-graduated Georgetown standouts pushed the tempo of the women’s races to help the Hoyas’ middle-distance runners and sprinters pick up qualifying times, while other athletes, like seniors Davin Williams and Emily Reaman, picked up championship qualifying marks on their own.

“I thought it was a great start for our program,” Associate Head Coach Andrew Valmon said. “We had enough strong bodies to go to two meets and still get the results that we needed. At George Mason, Davin’s provisional qualifying mark in the triple jump, 51 feet, was awesome as an opener.”

Williams, a former Big East champion in the triple jump, dominated the competition and picked up the men’s team’s first NCAA provisional qualifying mark of the season.

“We’re using [the early meets] mostly as practice, but I came here and wanted to qualify,” Williams said. “It was a good start, and I’m still improving.”

Junior Treniere Clement, who earned an NCAA provisional qualifying mark in the 3,000m during her first race of the indoor season, picked up another in the mile on Saturday. Senior Erin Sicher was the second collegiate finisher in the mile, and with a time of 4:49.29, finished less than a second away from also earning an NCAA qualification.

“Treniere and Erin, particularly, had good, solid efforts, and they’re going to run faster than that – it’s just a matter of getting them in racing shape,” Director of Track and Field and Cross Country Ron Helmer said.

Clement’s attainment of NCAA provisional marks early in the year should reduce the pressure of having to qualify later in the season, and by qualifying in multiple events, should help to provide coaches with a range of different possible strategies to use at the NCAA Championships.

“Coach Helmer has a plan for everyone, but mine changes every week,” Clement said. “To get one event out of the way means I don’t have to run it again, and I can focus on other things, like the 800m.and just create as many options for myself as I can.”

While Clement and Williams were the only two Georgetown athletes to earn NCAA provisional qualifications over the weekend, both the men’s and women’s teams received a host of Big East qualifying marks.

Senior Emily Reaman dusted a field of 20 runners in the 3,000m, where she timed 10:09.43 to win by a 12-second margin and earn a Big East qualifying mark. For Reaman, who had been sidelined all cross country season with an injury, the race seemed like a long-awaited revival.

“I felt good out there,” Reaman said. “[The start of the race] went slower than I wanted . so it meant I needed to pick it up in order to qualify, but it was good and exciting.”

Numerous middle-distance runners and sprinters also racked up Big East qualifying marks at George Mason, including junior Kori Hamilton in the 400m, senior Jamillah Bowman and junior Monica Hargrove in the 500m, junior Rose Wetzel in the 1,000m and senior Jill Laurendeau, who was third behind Clement and Sicher in the mile.

Behind Williams at George Mason, the men’s team received strong performances from freshman pole vaulter Danny Pellegrino, who cleared 4.72m, and their sprinters. Senior Robert Wingate-Robinson timed 49.20 in the 400m and junior Ali Najjar and senior Michael Williams logged 1:03.53 and 1:05.28, respectively, in the 500m.

The Hoyas continued to collect Big East qualifying times at the Rutgers Invitational, led by sophomore Jodee Adams-Moore in both the mile (4:58.6) and 3,000m (9:55.1), junior Colleen Kelly in the mile (4:59.0), and freshman Megan O’Neill in the 1,000m (2:55.6).

The men’s team had particularly strong showings in the 1,000m and 500m – where they qualified a total of seven athletes for the Big East Championships – and the mile, where sophomore Chris Esselborn won the race in 4:16.0.

“For the weekend, we went out and we had a goal: We wanted to put some times on the board and get people qualified,” Valmon said. “Given the weather and the facilities, it shows these kids are resilient and put their best foot forward. When you look back on last year’s results, I don’t think you’d see these kinds of performances this early.”

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