Track team closes fall semester with ‘pretty good day’

The Owls recorded 10 top-10 finishes at the Navy Lid Lifter on Tuesday in Maryland.

During her freshman season, walk-on Jazmyne Williams takes a water break during practice at the Temple Sports Complex on March 8, 2017. | BILIN LIN / TTN FILE PHOTO

In just the second meet of the indoor season, sophomore sprinter and hurdler Ebonee Jackson has continued to impress. She once again beat her personal best in the 60-meter hurdles, beating her time from the Fastrack Season Opener by two-hundredths of a second.

She recorded three top-10 finishes in individual events and helped a relay team place fourth at the Navy Lid Lifter on Tuesday in Maryland. Temple had 10 top-10 finishes overall.

“She is one of the better athletes on our squad, and I know she’s up to the challenge to compete at a high level this year,” coach Elvis Forde said. “One of the top priorities was to sign her when I came to Temple, so she’s a part of the foundation of our program. We’ve got to lean on her and yes, she’ll be expected to do some of the heavy lifting. But overall we’re really looking forward to the impact that she can create for us this year.”

The Owls earned nine top-10 individual performances in five of the meet’s events. Most of them came from underclassmen.

Temple added 18 freshmen to its roster before the season. Forde has high expectations for this group and expects them to compete at a high level.

“People like Lucy Jones, Helene Gottlieb, Sydney Williams and Kayla Nesbitt-McEwen are athletes who we’re going to rely on to get good results,” Forde said. “Some of them may even pass some veterans on the team. So [I] can’t emphasize enough how important that group is to our progress.”

Williams also was part of four top-10 finishes. She earned seventh place in the 60 hurdles with a time of 8.98 seconds, fourth in the 60 dash and fifth in the 200 with a 25.54-second time. She, along with Jackson, freshman Mallorie Smith, and sophomore Jazmyne Williams finished the 4-x-400 relay in fourth place with a time of three minutes, 55.56 seconds.

Gottlieb earned a top-10 finish in the mile run, which she completed in 4:59.84 to place fourth.

Alongside Sydney Williams, Jackson competed in the 200. She finished in fifth with a time of 25.5 seconds.

“We had a pretty good day,” Forde said. “It wasn’t anything spectacular, but we had a short turnaround week where we didn’t get to practice as much as we liked. We’re happy with how we did though, and athletes like Jackson, Williams, [junior multis competitor] Crystal Jones and Gottlieb are starting to show why we brought them here.”

Temple’s next event is the Nittany Lion Challenge at Penn State on Jan. 13, 2018.

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