adidas trainers Carter hoping to maintain strong hurdles tradition
On a wet, dreary day in Des Moines, Iowa, Indiana State senior Marcus Neely cleared the 10 31/2 feet barriers as well as he had all season but had to settle for third place in the finals of the 110 meter hurdles at the Drake Relays.
The two ahead of Neely Iowa’s Aaron Mallett and Wisconsin Milwaukee’s Nate Pozolinski are two of just 17 athletes in the country to run faster than Neely’s time of 13.77 seconds.
With teammate Daley Carter at 44th in the nation, Indiana State is one of a handful of Division I track programs with multiple hurdlers in the running to qualify for the NCAA Championships at Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore.
ISU interim track and field coordinator Angie Martin, who excelled in several disciplines as an athlete at ISU including hurdles, said carrying on that tradition is among the paramount goals that the Sycamore staff has going forward.
“I think that’s an important thing. Historically, we’ve had good hurdlers for a long time. I know our other coaches think highly of that. Hopefully we can keep recruiting some good ones to come in,” Martin said.
Martin knows she can’t replace her former mentor but it’s natural that she follow in his footsteps as far as coaching methodology not only in teaching the finer points of the event but in relating to her athletes.
“The biggest thing, he was one of my coaches, so I’ve been through his program. It’s been a nice transition. The guys have been really helpful. I ask them their input, I give them mine. We’re learning as we go. I have a different personality, I have to coach my way, but the end goal is still the same.”
it’s been important for he and his teammates to connect with their new coach.
“It’s gone well but it’s always an adjustment period. It’s like having a new coach. We’ve been able to adjust really well and talk about our needs to be able to better each other,” Neely said. “We were like that with coach McNichosl, always very open with him. We’d sit in his office for hours after practice. We’ve tried to get on the same level with coach Martin. A better relationship always results in good training.”
Carter is in need of direction to get out of a slump. He’s made contact with hurdles in his past two races, resulting in his slowest times of the spring.
Carter said prior to the outdoor season he hoped to be right there with Neely, even hoping to contend with his teammate at the Missouri Valley Conference championships.
“I had a good season going up until last week. I ran the worst race of my life at Pacesetter,” said Carter, a native of Barbados like former Sycamore All American and 2012 Olympian Greggmar Swift. “It’s something I’ve got to work on in practice and get it back before conference.”
Carter has the potential to play a big role at the Valley meet as he also competes in the 400 hurdles and two relays.
The ISU hurdles standouts will be in action Friday in the Billy Hayes Invitational to get tuned up for the MVC meet in Wichita, Kansas, the following weekend.
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