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Firebirds Look to Repeat as East Coast Conference Indoor Track & Field Champions Saturday

Freshman Charmaine Sweeney hands off to sophomore Marlena Wright during the Firebirds' season-best running of the 4x400M relay at George Mason.
Freshman Charmaine Sweeney hands off to sophomore Marlena Wright during the Firebirds' season-best running of the 4x400M relay at George Mason.

SOUTH HUNTINGTON, NY – The University of the District of Columbia Women's Indoor Track & Field squad will attempt to repeat as East Coast Conference champions in the second annual ECC Indoor Track & Field Championship event at St. Anthony's High School on Saturday, February 22nd.

"Competing for a conference championship is a wonderful opportunity to measure ourselves against some great teams," reigning ECC Coach of the Year Alton McKenzie said. "Especially with the ECC having athletes at the top of the Division II NCAA list and some of the top track & field athletes in the East Region."

As it chases its second straight team title, UDC will focus where its strengths lie in the sprints, jumps and sprint relays.

The reigning ECC Indoor Track & Field Athlete of the Year and Athlete of the Meet at last year's championship, senior Shauna-Kay Creary (Accounting – Kingston, Jamaica/St. Andrew HS) returns to the runway hoping to rack up points across multiple events for UDC. Fellow senior Kaydian Jones (Journalism – Kingston, Jamaica/St. Andrew HS), the reigning ECC Outdoor Track & Field Athlete of the year last year, is also poised to make her mark on this year's indoor championship event. The Firebirds feature a dynamic 4x400M relay team ranked No. 2 in the East Region consisting of freshman Charmaine Sweeney, sophomore Marlena Wright, junior Jerily Benjamin and Kaydian Jones.

The Firebirds were able to upset powerhouse Georgian Court with a roster of just 13 student-athletes last season. This year they are down to 12, but that will have no affect on the Firebirds' mindset, according to McKenzie.

"We're  a small team, but we'll go out there and compete hard and see where that leaves us at the end of the meet when the point totals are tallied," McKenzie said.