DURHAM, N.C. - Over fifty members of the Duke track and field team will kick off the 2013 season this weekend, January 18-19 at the Virginia Tech Invitational in Blacksburg, Va., and the Dick Taylor Invitational in Chapel Hill, N.C.
Forty Blue Devils will travel to Blacksburg to compete in a variety of events on the track. On the slate to compete is 2010 10,000 meter NCAA Champion Juliet Bottorff who is looking to work on her speed in the mile run and serve as the anchor of one of the three women's distance medley relay squads. Joining her in the mile is cross country All-ACC honoree Madeline Morgan, cross country All-American Kelsey Lakowkse and Esther Vermeer, who served as the leadoff runner for Duke's 2011 4x800 Penn Relay champions and has not competed in almost a year.
Fifth year senior and All-America Cydney Ross is also in the lineup this weekend, set to compete in both the 1,000 meters and 4x400m relay. Joining the St. Louis, Mo., native will be sophomores Elizabeth Kerpon, Lauren Hansson and Alexis Roper in the relay race. Kerpon, Hansson and Roper are also entered to compete in the open 400 meter while junior Hannah Goranson's race in the 60 meter hurdles rounds out the women's sprinting contingent.
Both the men's and women's squads will also field multiple distance medley relay squads on Saturday.
A smaller contingent of multi-event athletes, throwers and vaulters will make the shorter drive to Chapel Hill, N.C., for the Dick Taylor Invitational. Sophomore Ian Rock, joined by freshmen Marcus Montano and Robert Rohner will compete in the two-day heptathlon competition while junior Miray Seward and sophomore Baily Murphy will compete in the pentathlon.
Representing the throwers, All-ACC honoree Erica Brand along with redshirt junior Kyler Shumway and redshirt sophomore Stephen Boals are slated to compete in the shot put. Shumway will also compete in the weight throw over the weekend.