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CLEMSON, S.C. — The Clemson track and field program will open its 2021 indoor campaign on Saturday, Jan. 9, by hosting the Orange & Purple Elite at the Clemson Indoor Track & Field Complex. The meet will be the first of five hosted by Clemson this season, with the slate of meets set to culminate when the Tigers host the ACC Indoor Championships from Feb. 25-27.
“I’m excited that we’re going to get this opportunity,” said Director of Track and Field Mark Elliott. “We have to see where we are… the meet will give us a good indicator of where we are and what we have to work towards and keep getting better at throughout the season.”
A trio of field events will start Saturday’s competition, with Anthony Hamilton highlighting the early action as he contests the men’s high jump at 10 a.m. Track events will begin at 12:15 p.m., with Kori Carter, Nicolee Foster and Trishauna Hemmings slated to compete in the prelims of the women’s 60-meter hurdles.
The race of the day will come at 1:20 p.m., as the women’s 600 meters will be filled with world-class talent. Laurie Barton and Andrea Foster, Clemson’s pair of 800-meter All-Americans from the 2020 indoor season, will open their campaigns by toeing the line in the first section of the event. In their heat, Barton and Foster are joined by a field of acclaimed professional runners, highlighted by Clemson alumna Natoya Goule. Kamryn McIntosh and Leah Disher will round out Clemson’s four runners in the opening section of the women’s 600 meters.
“The 600 is a very good marker for us on where our half milers are at,” said Elliott. “The girls in our group have been making good strides this year in training.”
Terryon Conwell will make his highly anticipated debut for the Tigers when he takes the track to race in the men’s 300 meters. Conwell, a transfer from Mississippi State, will compete in the first section of the event and is looking to improve upon his personal best of 34.11, which he set in his 2020 season opener.
On the women’s side, Danielle Sloley will take to the throwing circle for the first time as a Tiger when she competes in the women’s shot put at 4 p.m. Sloley arrived in Tigertown last semester as a coveted recruit from Kingston, Jamaica, and is set for a stellar freshman season after her illustrious prep career.
Saturday’s meet will see Clemson compete against student-athletes from Georgia Tech, Duke and Southern Wesleyan University. All four teams will officially open their seasons by competing at the Orange & Purple Elite.
Given present state gathering restrictions and modified operations protocols due to COVID-19, attendance at the venue will be limited to only essential participants. As is the standard at many NCAA Indoor facilities this season, this will allow for adequate social distancing for coaching staffs, participating student-athletes and meet officials. No student-athlete or staff guests will be allowed inside the facility.
Select event video will stream live via ESPN ACC Network Extra, and live results are available via Adkins Timing. Fans can also access updates via official social media accounts, @ClemsonTrackXC.
Other protocols include tented staging areas at the Rock Norman Outdoor Track, restrooms for each team individually, designated entry and exit points for participants, and a one-way flow of participant pedestrian traffic. Face coverings will be required by participants at all times when not actively engaged in competition.
For the week prior to the track meet, non-conference opponents will need one PCR test for student-athletes, coaches and close support staff. For the week of the track meet, non-conference institutions will need one PCR test for student-athletes, coaches and close support staff within three (3) calendar days of the first competition of the week. Additionally, all teams will test within 48 hours after each event.