McKeesport, PA. – The Penn State Greater Allegheny Track & Field team has seen a lot of success in their first year as a program. They had nine athletes head to nationals, brought home seven total medals, and had two United States Collegiate Athletic Association National Champions. On Friday, they will bring their first season as a team to a close when they head to Allegheny College for the Gator Invitational at 9 a.m.
The meet offers head coach Greg Schmitt and his team a chance to go out and compete one more time before the team heads into the off-season. With classes for the spring semester already wrapped up, six of PSUGA’s athletes will be making the trip to Allegheny College as they put their skills on display one last time.
On the women’s side, USCAA National Champion Eladia Kennedy (Pittsburgh, PA./Imani Christian Academy) will represent PSUGA in both the 100-meter and 200-meter dash. After coming in second in the 100-meter trials at the USCAA National Championships, Kennedy came back and won the title by .02 seconds with a time of 14.05 seconds. She also medaled in the 200-Meter taking home the Bronze medal coming in at 25.98.
Her brother and fellow USCAA National Champion Makis Rivera (Pittsburgh, PA./Imani Christian Academy) will also make the trip as he defends his title competing in the 800-Meter run. For Rivera, it took a comeback effort to become National Champion after being behind entering the final turn. However, he was able to kick it into high gear and found a way to come back finishing at 2:08.91, just .58 seconds from his PR.
Namy Makiese (Pittsburgh, PA./Allderdice HS) and James Plez (Philadlephia, PA./Northeast HS) will join Rivera on the track as they compete in both the men’s 100-meter and 200-meter dasg for PSUGA. Plez will also be featured on the field side of things where he will be in the men’s long jump as he looks to get back on track.
Cameron Shaw (South Park, PA./South Park HS) and Jalen Bolger (Philadelphia, PA./Philadelphia Electric Technician Charter HS) round out the field of competitors as both compete in the Men’s Shot Put. Shaw made the trip down to Nationals and made the finals coming in ninth place tossing a distance of 7.63 meters. Shaw’s goal is to hit the 8.0 meter mark, a goal he is just .8 meters from doing, and he will get one more chance to accomplish that goal this season.
The day’s events begin at 10 a.m. with the field events and PSUGA’s first event comes at 11:30 a.m. when Shaw competes in shot put and Plez takes on Long Jump. Track events begin at 12:45 p.m. with the Men’s and Women’s 100-Meter trials following at 1:20 p.m. For a complete schedule of events click here.
The Allegheny Gator Invitational will take place at Frank B. Fuhrer Field located at 520 N. Main Street, Meadville, PA. 16335. Spectator parking will be available at the North side of the stadium in the grass parking lot.