WKU to host Hilltopper Relays this weekend

Jeremy Chisenhall

WKU will be hosting the annual WKU Hilltopper Relays this Friday and Saturday at the Charles M. Rueter Track and Field Complex.

The Hilltoppers, led by their preseason top-25 men’s team, will look to defend their home turf against 20 other schools.

There will be nine Division 1 schools competing, including WKU, Northern Kentucky University, Eastern Kentucky University and Belmont University. Austin Peay University, Xavier University, Murray State, Tennessee Tech and Ohio University will have just women’s teams in the competition.

There will also be six Division 2 schools: Grand Valley State, Northwood, Hillsdale, Bellarmine, Kentucky State and Siena Heights.

Also, there will be six NAIA schools competing: Findlay, Indiana Tech, Lindsey Wilson, Kentucky Wesleyan, St Joseph’s, (IN), Cumberland.

Overall, 584 athletes will be on the Hill this weekend for the Hilltoppers’ lone home event of the season.

The Hilltoppers will be looking to build on their quality outing at the Pepsi Florida Relays, a meet in which the team produced five top-10 finishes.

Emmanuel Dasor will be looking to build on his outstanding showing last week, which earned him C-USA Male Track Athlete of the Week honors. Dasor ran a 45.93 in the 400-meter last week, which was the fourth-fastest time in school history, and the third-fastest time of his career. It is the third time that Dasor has won the award for outdoor track, and the first time since 2015.

The men’s 4×100 team, led by Dasor, will be looking for another quality outing after finishing fifth last week, as their 38.91 time was the  second-best time in program history. It also ranks first in C-USA this season.

Senior thrower Jenessa Jackson will also be looking to build on last week, as she finished 10th in the shot put last week. After success during the indoor season, she’s primed for a successful outdoor season.

After starting the season off with a personal best in the 400m hurdles last week (1:00.21), Kaila Smith will be looking to do even better here at home this weekend.

This will be just the second team meet of the season. The first meet of the season featured just two individual runners from WKU, making last week’s meet in Florida the first with both the men’s and women’s teams involved.

After a successful meet last week when the Hilltoppers were up against 90 other schools, including 12 in the top-25, WKU will be looking for even more success against fewer teams and a field that isn’t as stacked as last week’s was.

Reporter Jeremy Chisenhall can be reached at 859-760-0198 and [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at @JSChisenhall.