32nd annual Niswonger Invitational set to take place this weekend inside ETSU/MSHA Athletic Center
Thursday, January 21, 2010

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Jan. 21, 2010) - The East Tennessee State University track & field team has begun its final preparations for the Niswonger Foundation Track and Field Invitational/KTC High School Indoor Track Classic, which will be held inside the ETSU/MSHA Athletic Center this weekend on the David E. Walker Track.  This year's meet is the eighth year the Niswonger Foundation will be sponsoring the event and 32nd meet overall.


The meet will showcase some of the world's top collegiate, post collegiate, and professional athletes. Over 1,500 athletes from 75 teams will compete in the two-day event. Some notable universities making the trip to Johnson City include: Alabama (SEC), Appalachian State, Samford and Western Carolina from the SoCon, UAB (from Conference USA), Gardner-Webb and Winthrop from the Big South and the Buccaneers can see where they match-up in the A-Sun as Kennesaw State, USC Upstate and Lipscomb will be competing in the meet this weekend. Please click the entries tab above for complete listing of all the athletes and schools participating.


Some notable ETSU athletes to watch out for this weekend include:


Duronal Monal (Belle Glade, Fla.) - Monal currently holds the 14th fastest time in the country with his 6.74 mark in the 60m dash. The senior sprinter also ranks first in the A-Sun in both the 60m and 200m (21.64), while winning the 55m title at Appalachian State and 60m title in Clemson.


Michael James (Palm Bay, Fla.) - James set a NCAA Provisional Mark in the 55m with his time of 7.35 in Boone. James was named A-Sun Runner of the Week after his first-place finish at Appalachian State, and the junior Buccaneer student-athlete also finished with the top time in the 60m hurdles at Clemson (7.92).


Ben Ronoh (Sotik, Kenya) - The reigning Indoor and Outdoor Atlantic Sun Most Outstanding Track Performer has only competed in one meet so far in 2009-10. However, Ronoh won that event, by claiming gold in the mile at Appalachian State back in December (4:22.41).


Kenneth Rotich (Nairobi, Kenya) - Like Ronoh, Rotich only competed in one meet this season, as he finished second behind his cousin in the mile at Appalachian State (4:22.57). The two-time Atlantic Sun cross country champion will compete in the men's 5000m on Saturday morning.


Jordan Briggs (Erwin, Tenn.) - This senior local standout will compete in a plethora of events this weekend, with his strongest competition being in the pole vault. Briggs is coming off a school-record performance last weekend in Blacksburg, where he cleared 15-03 - placing him first amongst A-Sun competitors.


Nic Chernikow (Seymour, Tenn.) - Chernikow is the reigning conference champion and ETSU record holder in the heptathlon. The Seymour, Tenn. native will be competing in the 60m hurdles, 60m dash, pole vault and 4x400-meter relay this weekend on his home track.


Ryan Beaver (Virginia Beach, Va.) - Beaver has been a solid addition to the Buccaneers' horizontal jumps group. The freshman currently tops the A-Sun in both the long (7.15m) and triple jump (14.53m).


Zachlynn Blackburn (Tazewell, Va.) - Blackburn will make her final appearance in the Niswonger Invitational this weekend. The senior thrower is coming off a first-place finish in the weight throw at Clemson and is the current ETSU record holder in the event (55-03.50).  


Jasmine Ingram (Frederick, Md.) - Ingram has been a spark to the Lady Bucs' track squad this season. The Frederick, Md. native has won a pair of A-Sun Athlete of the Week titles, while finishing first in the 800m at Boone (2:22.48). Ingram currently holds the conference's best times in the 400m (55.99) and 800m (2:22.48).


In addition, the KTC High School Indoor Track Classic will be taking place at the same time as the collegiate Niswonger meet. Over 650 athletes from high school clubs are expected to make the trip to Memorial Center this weekend. Teams from across the southeast region are expected to visit Johnson City.


For a complete listing of events and times, please visit http://www.cfpitiming.com/ or click on the link above. Make sure to visit www.ETSUBucs.com for a full recap of what took place at the conclusion of Friday and Saturday.


The meet begins at 10 a.m. Friday morning, and runs until seven o'clock Saturday evening.


Media Requests


All media requests and inquiries including credentials and interviews should be directed to the media relations contact for track and field Kevin Brown (423) 439-5263 or via e-mail etsusportsinfo@etsu.edu. Requests should be made as early as possible.


Live Results


Live scoring will be available all weekend by visiting http://www.cfpitiming.com/.