Men's Track to Compete in Atlantic 10 Championships

Men's Track to Compete in Atlantic 10 Championships

Feb. 19, 2009

Schedule of Events | Interview with Coach John Copeland

KINGSTON, R.I. - The Rhode Island men's indoor track and field team will be in search of its fourth conference title in six years as competition for the 2009 Atlantic 10 Championships begins Friday at Mackal Field House.

URI is coached by John Copeland, who is in his 27th year with the program. Under his direction, the Rams have won five Atlantic 10 Indoor Track & Field titles (2007, 2005, 2004, 2002 and 2001).

A year ago, URI just missed defending its 2007 crown as it placed second with 156.00 points. Charlotte won the event with 181.00 points.

Individually, senior Shawn Leonard (Stoughton, Mass.), junior Tyler Adams (Middletown, R.I.), and sophomore David Kennedy (Essex Junction, Vt.) will each look to defend their league titles in the high jump, shot put and 500-meter run, respectively.

Heading into this year's championships, Kennedy holds three top five conference marks, ranking third in the 200m dash (21.94), third in the 400m dash (48.81) and fifth in the 500m dash (1:04.93).

In the field events, senior John Carstensen (Staten Island, N.Y.) and sophomore Shunzaburo Kida (Essex Junction, Vt.) hold the top two performances in the pole vault.

Carstensen enters the competition after recording the league's top mark (16-2) at last week's Armory Winter Games. Kida is in second with a performance of 15-9.

In the high jump, juniors Rob Damon (Piscataway, N.J.) and Michael Elliott (Lisbon, Conn.) are tied for fourth in the league with equaling leaps of 6-6.25. Leonard is tied for the eighth-best mark in the conference (6-4.25).

In the shot put, Adams holds the league's fifth-best throw with a toss of 49-9.75.

The championships will be split between two days for the first time in Conference history, with action starting at 9:00 a.m. on Friday.

Complete results will be posted at the end of competition on Saturday at Live video streaming of the 2009 Championship will be available on the A-10 site for $12.95 for a two-day pass.