No. 2 Aggies host nine teams in Texas A&M Invitational at Cushing Stadium

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COLLEGE STATION – A second home meet inside E.B. Cushing Stadium will be a two-day affair as the Aggies host the Texas A&M Invitational this Friday and Saturday. Teams competing in the scored meet include Air Force, Arizona State, Houston, Rice, Sam Houston State, TCU, Texas State, UTEP and UTSA.

The Aggie men and women are ranked No. 2 this week in the USTFCCCA national team ratings index. Other teams among the top 50 include Houston (No. 9 men, No. 41 women), Arizona State (No. 27 women), TCU (No. 31 men), and Sam Houston (No. 32 men).

“We’ve got a good group of schools competing here,” said Texas A&M head coach Pat Henry. “Houston is running real well right now and we have a few other Texas schools involved this weekend along with Air Force and Arizona State. It will be a good competition.”

Friday’s action includes a set of field events starting at 4 p.m. with the women’s hammer and women’s pole vault along with the men’s and women’s long jump. They are followed by the men’s high jump and men’s javelin at 5 p.m. and the women’s javelin at 6:30 p.m. The men’s hammer will follow after the women’s hammer is complete.

The remaining field events begin at 3 p.m. on Saturday with running events starting at 5:30 p.m. An Aggie Ring presentation will occur at 5:15 p.m.

“Our athletes and staff were excited with having the first home meet last weekend,” said Henry. “We know what’s here and know what to expect. We have to get things ready to go each week we host. It’s a huge facility, so there’s a lot of work that goes into putting on a track meet.

“Everyone seemed to have a good time last weekend and understands we have probably one of the best facilities in the country right now. Everybody felt good about it.”

With the collection of teams competing at Cushing Stadium this weekend, athletes and relays currently ranked among the top 10 this outdoor season will be on display.

In the men’s 4x100 relay, Houston has already clocked 38.45 while Sam Houston has posted a 39.11 as they rank second and fifth among collegiate teams. On the women’s side the Aggies lead the SEC and rank second with a 43.46. In the 4x400 relay, Texas A&M men rank third with a 3:03.30 as the Aggie women are seventh with a 3:32.84.

Tyra Gittens will long jump and run the 100m hurdles this weekend while Devin Dixon races at 800m for the first time outdoors this season as does Jazmine Fray in the women’s 800m. Tierra Robinson-Jones, who ranks 12th in the 400m with a 52.66 from the UTSA meet and is fourth among freshmen, joins teammates Jaevin Reed and Jarra Owens in the event.

Jacob Wooten is scheduled to return to the pole vault where the field includes Clayton Fritsch of Sam Houston, who has cleared 18-1 outdoors this season.

Jace Comick faces a 200m field that includes Houston’s duo of Kahmari Montgomery and Obi Igbokwe along with Chris Jefferson of Sam Houston and TCU’s Timotenda Matiyenga. Igbokwe is also scheduled to race in the 400m against A&M’s Kyree Johnson and Sean Bailey of UTEP.

Aggies Sam Hardin (239-9) and Nick Mirabelli (236-6) currently rank fourth and sixth in the javelin while William Petersson (226-7) is 18th. In the women’s javelin A&M’s Maddy Stulce (174-7) ranks 11th.

In the 100m hurdles Naomi Taylor of Houston, who ran a windy 13.17 during the Texas Relays, leads the field that will include A&M’s Kennedy Smith and Chinyere Njoku along with Gittens.

The men’s triple jump features collegiate leader Chengetayi Mapaya of TCU, who produced a leap of 54-4 (16.56) at the Texas Relays.