Eagles headed back to the track
Friday, January 18, 2008
By Tracy Washam
Christian University’s track and field team has begun preparations to
build on a successful 2007 season with their first indoor meet of the
2008 season approaching.
Last year, both the men and women’s teams placed third at the Sooner
Athletic Conference Championships, with seven Eagles and Lady Eagles
winning individual titles.
“We had a great season last year,” Head Track and Field Coach Randy
Heath said. “We are working hard to make sure we have another great one
this coming season.”
Heath has high expectations for this year’s team. The teams are
working hard in their practices, which consist of the warm up tradition
called the one-point-five. In the one-point-five, the entire team runs
the loop around the Oklahoma Christian campus to start off the day of
practice as their conditioning workout.
“Practices are intense,” All-American junior Curtis Pratt said. “We
are all working hard in our areas and are definitely ready to compete.”
Oklahoma Christian returns a hand full of All-Americans, including
Charlotte Heron who won All-America status in the high jump. Also
returning is the 3200-meter relay team of Pratt, Cole McAllister, Eric
Poole, and Josh Wayland who also earned All-American last year.
The Eagles have also added some newcomers to the mix. Heath signed eight men and eight women to join this year’s program
“I am very excited about these new kids,” Heath said. “They are definitely going to make an impact this season.”
Some faces to look for this season are sprinters Riley Camp of and
Brady Watson. On the women’s side, Summit Durant, from Purcell, Okla.,
and Kiley Woodward are going to make an immediate impact.
“The freshmen this year are working hard,” Pratt said. “They know
they are a part of a great program and are ready to show what they can
do at the college level.”
The Eagles also return All-American Jordan Powell, who also competes
in cross country for the university. Powell earned All-American honors
in cross country last fall with a 10th place finish in the NAIA
“I have some of an advantage,” Powell said. “I come right off of
cross country into track. So, I’ve kept in good shape and am still in
Heath enters his 29th year as head men and women’s track and field coach.
“I feel truly blessed to have the job that I do,” Heath said. “I
hope to continue to excel my program and my kids to their highest
Along side Coach Heath is Assistant Track and Field Coach Jeff
Bennett, one of Oklahoma Christian’s most acclaimed athletes. In 2002,
after a 28-year long career in public education, he returned to
Oklahoma Christian as the field events coach.
“Coach Bennett is just an outstanding athlete and coach,” Heath
said. “I couldn’t have anyone better helping me coach this sport.”
Bennett was a member of 1972 U.S. Olympic team, placing fourth in
the decathlon with 7,974 points at the Summer Olympic Games in Munich,
Germany. He set a personal record of 8,121 points when he won the
American Amateur Union’s National Decathlon Championship in 1973.
Bennett won NAIA National Championships in the decathlon in 1969 and 1970.
The track and field team’s first competition is the Missouri
Southern Indoor Invitational on Jan. 25-26, in Joplin, Mo. The outdoor
season will begin with the Southwest Invitational on March 13 in