Wildcats eye fourth straight RRAC Championship

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The Wiley College men’s track and field team looks to continue its dynasty when it competes for a fourth consecutive Red River Athletic Conference Track and Field Championship Friday and Saturday at Tatum High School’s Eagles Stadium.

The Wildcats dominated the conference during the regular season. Out of 19 events, Wiley College leads in nine events. In the 100-meter dash, the Wildcats own three of the top four times in the conference led by Oraine Palmer’s NAIA-best 10.17. Moriba Morain – a NAIA and RRAC Track Athlete of the Week award winner – leads the conference in the 200-meter dash at 20.94. Palmer and Quinn-Lee Ralph follow at 21.02 and 21.31, respectively. The Wildcats have the top five times in the 400-meter dash led by reigning NAIA and RRAC Track Athlete of the Week Kimorie Shearman – who has the best time in the NAIA at 46.49. Three of the best 800-meter run times belong to Wiley College. Defending NAIA champion Marbeq Edgar leads at 1:49.76. Edgar also has the best 1,500-meter run time at 3:52.40. Laban Kandie has the best 5,000-meter run time at 15:21.45.

Wiley College leads the conference in all three relays. The team of Morain, Palmer, Machael Mark and Ralph ran 40.11 at the Texas Southern Relays on March 17. The 4 x 400-meter relay team of Jose Garcia, Morain, Edgar and Rajay Hamilton ran 3:12.19 at the McNeese Cowboy relays on March 11. At the same meet, the Wildcats ran 7:47.24 in the 4 x 800-meter relay. Edgar, Hamilton, John Hillhouse and Shevan Parks ran on the team.

Eight times the Wildcats took home RRAC Athlete of the Week Awards. Shearman won Track Athlete of the Week twice and won NAIA Track Athlete of the Week this week. Quinn-Lee Ralph won for March 13-19. Morain won RRAC and NAIA Track Athlete of the Week on March 20-26. Edgar won RRAC and NAIA Track Athlete of the Week for March 27-April 2. Palmer won for April 3-9. Devlon Nobles won Field Athlete of the Week for March 20-26 and Ashton DeMurrell won for April 10-16.

Nine athletes return from last season’s championship. Kendell Perouza, Leonard Kiprono and Ralph were also a part of the 2015 RRAC Championship team. Machael Mark has competed on all three of the Wildcats conference championship teams.

The championship starts at 11 a.m. Friday with the long jump. Teams will compete in the 3,000-meter run, 4 x 800-meter relay and 10,000-meter run. Saturday will open with an opening ceremony at 9 a.m. Seniors from all seven schools will be honored at 9:30 a.m. The 4 x 100-meter relay will kick off the running events at 10:15 a.m. The top four athletes in each event will be awarded RRAC All-Conference.

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