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Track and Field: Irish to host weekend invite

By Laura Coletti | Friday, January 18, 2013

The Irish are looking to continue the success they experienced at Grand Valley State’s Bob Eubanks Open when they host the Notre Dame Invitational on Saturday.

South Florida, Michigan State and DePaul will all be traveling to the Loftus Center for the event.

Notre Dame senior pole vaulter and captain Chrissy Finkel said that this weekend’s meet will serve as a good stepping stone for the team, as they continue to prepare for the Big East Championships in February.

“The Notre Dame Invitational is a smaller meet in relation to the other [meets] we’ll be competing in this season,” she said. “South Florida is also in the Big East so it’s great to compete against them with less pressure.”

Since the meet at Grand Valley State, the team has focused on staying consistent with their lifting and workouts. Because the track and field season is so long, it is important for the athletes to train carefully, Finkel said.

“Certain individuals have been decreasing workouts in preparation for the meet, but there is a fine line between training for improvement and over-training, which decreases meet performance,” she said. “Our coaches do a great job of balancing the two.”

The Irish will attempt to feed off of their recent victories and continue to perform at a high level this weekend. For the women’s squad, junior middle distance runner Alexa Aragon and her freshman sister Danielle Aragon, who also competes in middle distance events, are expected to have strong races. The men’s side is expecting big things out of a pair of freshmen, distance runner Michael Clevenger and middle distance runner Eric Gebeke.

Because the some of the athletes have not competed since early December, it is important for the athletes to regain confidence and compete well this weekend, Finkel said. This is also the first time the distance runners will be competing this winter, so the team hopes to see a strong performance to kick off their season.

“It’s great to have the entire team back for this meet, as only a small number of individuals returned for last weekend’s competition at Grand Valley State,” Finkel said. “We are a large team, and it’s fun when you get into a competition and can watch each member realize the result of all their hard work.”

Contact Laura Coletti at lcoletti@nd.edu