Britton, Pickett enter Relays as top seeds

Some Owls will vie for their first-ever gold medal at the Relays, while others will hope to best season-best scores.

Both the men’s and women’s track & field teams will be competing at the 119th annual Penn Relays Thursday through Saturday.

The meet pits hundreds of colleges, high schools and Olympic athletes together in one weekend-long event. Temple will be represented in 16 events throughout the weekend.

Sophomore Margo Britton will look to take it one step further this time around when she picks up the shot put Thursday in the shot put eastern, after tossing a 51 foot, 6.5 inch toss a year ago for a silver medal. The sophomore heads into the event with the top seed, and will be looking to snag her first career Penn Relays victory. Britton will also take part in the discus throw eastern on Thursday to finish her weekend early.

The women’s distance medley relay will reunite for the first time since breaking the school record at the indoor Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference Championships in Boston at an 11 minute, 43.63 second clip. The group will be looking to break the 11:40 mark and get into 11:30 range in the event’s “B” heat. Mobley said the group will consist of junior Anna Pavone, senior Tonney Smith, sophomore Jenna Dubrow, with the 400-meter leg still to be determined.

“They definitely have an opportunity to run in the 11:30s,” coach Eric Mobley said. They just missed that in the indoor season. That’s a good goal for the team to have.”

The Owls will also compete in the 4×400 Wetzler/Pennsylvania race Friday after taking silver in the event last year. The event pits Temple up against some local competition, as they will face a Pennsylvania-exclusive group including city rival St. Joseph’s.

In men’s field events, sophomore Justin Berg will make his first appearance at the Penn Relays as a Temple representative in the men’s hammer throw.

Junior Gabe Pickett and sophomore Derrick Holland will take part in the men’s collegiate triple jump. Pickett will enter the contest as the top seed.

For most Temple contestants, the meet acts only as a mere tune-up in wake of the Atlantic 10 Conference Championships next weekend, Mobley said.

“The Penn Relays is a wonderful event and a great opportunity for our student athletes,” Mobley said. “We’re just looking as a sharpening for the conference meet. As big as the Penn Relays is, the conference meet is more important. It’s the following week so we’re not trying to run athletes in multiple events or anything. We’ll spread out some of the relays and give some other athletes opportunities to run in relays and other events.”

Temple will kick off competition Thursday afternoon with Britton competing in the shot put at 2:15 p.m., and will conclude Saturday with the men’s triple jump and hammer throw.

The Owls’ full Penn Relays schedule can be viewed at the Penn Relays website.

Andrew Parent can be reached at or on Twitter @daparent93.

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