TEMPE, Arizona - Outdoor season begins this weekend for the Aggie track and field team as they compete in the Baldy Castillo Invitational hosted by Arizona State. Action begins Friday and continues through Saturday.
Friday's events include the hammer, starting at 3 p.m. (CST), and the 1,500 meters, beginning at 9:30 p.m. (CST). Aggie Brea Garrett will throw in the women's hammer field while school record holder Casey Strong is the lone A&M entry in the men's hammer field.
Saturday's action begins at noon (CST) with the women's discus, where A&M freshman Shelbi Vaughan makes her collegiate debut in the event. Running events start at 3 p.m. (CST) with the women's 100m hurdles and will conclude around 6 p.m. with 4x400 relays.
Kansas State and Minnesota are the two other teams competing in the Castillo meet with Arizona State and Texas A&M. A few events will also include post-collegiate competitors.
Aggie updates during the weekend will be available through twitter: @aggietrk. Live result updates on Saturday will be provided by Arizona State at the following link: http://www.thesundevils.com/sports/c-track/spec-rel/031413aaa.html
In addition to Vaughan competing in the women's discus, the Aggie javelin throwers get into action for the first time this season. Sam Humphreys, the 2012 Olympic Trials champion and NCAA silver medalist, embarks on his senior season at A&M.
The Aggie school record of 176-10 (53.91) in the discus will be in jeopardy as Vaughan throws for the first time. Karenrose Honea set the school mark 10 years ago during a May all-comers meet hosted by A&M. Vaughan established a career best of 198-9 (60.59) during her senior season as a high school competitor and topped 190 feet in five different meets during her 2012 campaign. Vaughan set a national high school record and also broke the American junior record last season.
Humphreys, who holds the A&M school record in the javelin with a mark of 268-7 (81.86) from winning the Olympic Trials last summer, opened the 2012 season with a then school record toss of 256-6 (78.19) to win the Castillo Invitational. He is joined in the javelin by teammate Devin Bogert, whose best of 236-1 (71.97) ranks No. 7 on the Aggie all-time list.
The men's discus will have Aggie Dalton Rowan returning from an impressive freshman season in which he set a personal best of 193-1 (58.85) during the NCAA Championships to place eighth.
Aggie sprinters will have their first opportunity to run a 4x100 relay to start the outdoor season. The men are scheduled to run two squads. One crew will include Ameer Webb, Aldrich Bailey, Jr., Michael Bryan and Prezel Hardy, Jr. The other foursome includes Carlyle Roudette, Bralon Taplin, Ricky Babineaux and Jermaine Davis.
Likewise the A&M women will also contest two sprint relays. One squad includes LaKeidra Stewart, Ashton Purvis, Kamaria Brown and Ashley Collier. The other crew will include India Daniels, Olivia Ekpone, Jennifer Madu and Chandrell Stephens.
The distance trio of C.J. Brown, Stephen Curry and Isaac Spencer will double up this weekend by running in the 1,500 meters on Friday and then contesting the 2,000-meter steeplechase on Saturday. MacLean O'Donnell and Ryan Miller will compete in a 1,500 and 3,000 double.
Jenna Hemann and Annie Kunz will be entered in a series of events as they prepare for the Texas Relays heptathlon, which will take place on March 27-28. Hemann and Kunz recently set indoor pentathlon career best scores in placing third and fifth, respectively, at the SEC Indoor Championships.
In the women's javelin Hemann and Kunz will be part of a six-person A&M crew that includes Krystyn Bradley, Kendall Munoz, Kelly Czumble and Jean Deason along with Aggie volunteer coach Ariana Ince.
Another event limited to the outdoor track season, the 400 hurdles, will have a trio of Aggies competing with Greg Coleman, Aikan Graham and Kenneth Minkah.
Meanwhile, a pair of A&M hurdles who placed in the finals of the NCAA Indoor 60 hurdles will transfer to the 100 and 110 hurdles outdoors in Donique' Flemings and Wayne Davis II, who both won a year ago during the Castillo Invitational.
Donique' Flemings, who placed fourth at the NCAA Indoor last weekend, brings a career best of 13.00 into her senior season along with a wind-aided best of 12.87 that won the Big 12 title last year. She set a then career best time of 13.27 in winning on the ASU track a year ago.
Davis, a runner-up at the recent NCAA Indoor, matched the Aggie school record of 13.37 last season in winning the Big 12 title and clocked a windy 13.26 during the prelims of the NCAA Championships. Davis then placed second at the NCAA Outdoor Championships and is the top returning hurdler from 2012. A windy 13.72 had Davis claiming his win at Castillo last year.