New Mexico State University Track and Field team opens up the indoor season this Friday in Lubbock, Texas, for the Texas Tech Invite.
The Aggies are entering the season after finishing fifth in the Western Athletic Conference Championship last season. The Aggies are also coming off a successful cross country season where the women's team finished second in the WAC Championship.
The meet will be hosted by the preseason No. 8 Red Raiders. The last time the Aggies traveled to Lubbock was April 22, 2011, towards the end of the outdoor season.
With the team returning from winter break, not much time was left for preparation for the meet. Head coach Orin Richburg said the Texas Tech Invite will provide as a gauge for the team as it practices throughout the season.
"This upcoming week gives us an indicator of where we are with our training," Richburg said. "It allows us the chance to put ourselves in the best situation six weeks down the road for the WAC Championship."
The Aggies will rely on a core group of veteran athletes to lead the team throughout the season. Richburg said he looks for LaSasha Aldredge, Leah Benton, Melanie Clay, Jndia Cleveland and Zoe Meade to be some of the main components to the upcoming season.
Richburg said the younger athletes will also play contributing roles as they learn throughout the season and gain a better understanding of where the team stands from the veterans.
"We have a group of ladies who have been with us for four years and know what the conferences is about and what they expect to do as a team," Richburg said. "With some of our younger athletes, they are getting to understand where we have to stay as a team."
Action begins Friday, January 13, at 7 pm (MT). The meet concludes Saturday afternoon.