Track and field competes in the Stanford Invitational

Grant Gordon

The Longhorns continue their outdoor season Friday and Saturday with another big challenge at the Stanford Invitational in Stanford, Calif., against runners from the top programs in the nation.

After the women’s side vaulted 12 spots in the rankings to No. 3 overall, first year head coach Mario Sategna will need to maintain his team’s focus in order to sustain the Longhorn’s recent success.

“I think the tough thing for us as coaches is we are trying to get the athletes prepared for the end of the year,” Sategna said. “But at the same time, it’s very important that we come out and have a great showing.”

Senior middle distance runner Marielle Hall is coming off a 1,500-meter win at the Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays.  

“This is my senior year, so I have to give it everything I have,” Hall said. “I hope that we can come out on top to have that momentum from a second place indoor finish.”

The Texas men experienced a 12 spot slide to No. 18 in the polls after Texas Relays.  However, the early-season slide may look irrelevant by season’s end, as the team still has several meets ahead of it.

Mostly distance runners have been entered into this weekend’s meet, with athletes competing in the 800-, 1,500-, 5,000- and 10,000-meter.

One athlete to watch on the men’s side is senior distance runner John McNamara.  The senior finished seventh in the mile at Texas Relays with a time of 4:08.95 and will compete in the 1,500-meter this weekend.

Another athlete to keep an eye on is junior distance runner Mark Pinales.  Coming off a win in the 5,000-meter at Texas Relays with a time of 14:25.96, Pinales looks to increase his distance to 10,000-meter mark and hopes for the same winning result.