The Texas State track and field team, first meet now under its belt, is working hard to make a successful 2012 indoor season.
Under an entirely new coaching staff, the first few meets will be a test to see improvements as well as the team's potential.
Last weekend marked the beginning of the indoor season when the team traveled to compete at the Texas A&M Invitational in College Station. Both teams placed sixth, with the men earning 40 points and the women notching 43.9.
Sophomore sprinter James Johnson stood out in the men's team, setting a new Texas State record with 21.36 seconds in the 200-meter dash. Johnson's time earned him fourth place in the event and one of the top-20 times in the nation.
The record was also a personal best for Johnson and he said it was a great way to start the season.
“I feel good and I'm glad I was able to do it,” he said. “It makes me feel like all the work I put in during the off-season really paid off. I'm proud of it.”
Freshman Charles Grethen also showed potential for the Bobcats, with a time of 1:53.31 in the 800-meter dash, gaining third place in his first career meet.
Grethen was born in Tuntange, Luxembourg and was named Luxembourg's Track and Field Athlete of the Year in 2010.
Two-time Southland Conference indoor champion Elena Horn started off another season for the women’s team with a second place finish in pole vault, marking 3.73 meters.
“My goals are to repeat what I did last year,” she said. “Of course it's not going to be easy, but I'm going to train for that and I think I can do it. I also really want to qualify for the NCAA nationals this year.”
Texas State will travel to compete in the Houston Indoor Invitational Friday and will be among thirteen schools in the event, including Houston Baptist, North Texas, Rice, Sam Houston State, Stephen F. Austin and Texas-San Antonio.
Head Coach Dana Boone said the first meet was a good starting point to see where the team was, but now they are making adjustments to improve.
“It will be interesting to see how we do this weekend,” she said. “From the last week and a half of practice, I've seen some people step up their intensity. For some it has given more confidence, and for some it’s time to step it up.”