XC/Track Signee Update
June 21, 2012
The Vanderbilt cross country and track and field programs will add eight freshmen to the mix this fall. Head Coach Steve Keith's program will be defending the SEC Women's Cross Country Championship this fall, before looking to continue to deepen the track program in 2013.
Sara Barron, Jennifer Cannon, Skyler Caprenter, Grace Corbett, Marika Crowe, Vanessa Valentine, Faith Washington and Lilly Williams will join the program this fall. VUCommodores.com takes a look at the conclusion of their high school careers, which included 16 state championships this spring, a pair of top-10 finishes at the New Balance High School Nationals and a sixth place finish in the Adidas Dream Mile.
In addition, a pair of the incoming rookies was named their respective state's Gatorade Girls Track and Field Athlete of the Year. Cannon took home the honor in Tennessee, while Carpenter won the award in the Hoosier State.
"We can't wait to see this group of newcomers come in and impact our program," Keith said. "They are all very familiar with what it takes to win, as a number of these athletes won quite a few individual state titles this year and we look forward to their energy and the contributions they will make."
Keith is especially excited to add Cannon, Carpenter and Washington to the corps of hurdlers and multi-events.
"Recruiting to the long hurdles and combined events was a focus for this year as we've had great success in those events in the past," Keith said. "Jennifer, Skyler and Faith are exactly what we needed to help rebuild our program in these areas."
In addition, the class will help Commodores will continue to grow stronger at the middle distances.
"This year's class also has a strong aptitude in the 800 meters and the mile, which will really strengthen our middle distance corps," Keith added.
With the additions, Keith is anxious to get to the 2012-13 season started, especially after the strong senior seasons the signees put together.
"It's great to see all of these kids performing at personal-best levels during their senior seasons," Keith said. "This will bring a lot of momentum into the program come the fall."
Sara Barron (Oakland, Mich./Notre Dame Prep)
800m - 2:09.05
1,600m - 4:47.35
3,200m - 10:54.98
Won state championships in 800 meters and 1,600 meters in 2012
Won cross country state championship in 2011
Nationally ranked top times in the 800 meters (20th) and 1,600 meters (15th)
Finished fourth at the New Balance High School Nationals in the 800 meters
Jennifer Cannon (Bristol, Tenn./Tennessee High)
Skyler Carpenter (Topeka, Ind./Westview)
Grace Corbett (Rockville, Md./Wootton)
Marika Crowe (Sudbury, Mass./Lincoln-Sudbury)
Vanessa Valentine (Melbourne, Fla./Melbourne)
Faith Washington (Reynoldsburg, Ohio/Reynoldsburg)
Lily Williams (Tallahassee, Fla./Chiles)
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