Jimmy Carnes Invitational College Preview

WATCH LIVE: Jimmy Carnes Invitational

Preview of the college track events for the 2024 Jimmy Carnes Invitational to be held this weekend at the Alachua County Sports & Events Center in Gainesville, Florida. All of the college events will be held exclusively on Friday, January 12th. 

The women's 60 meter dash will have the top two seeds both from Florida State University in Shenese Walker seeded at 7.25 and recent Cocoa High School graduate and former Florida high school state champion Liana Tyson at 7.40.

Walker, a native of Jamaica, was an NCAA Division 2 All-American third place finisher in the 100 meter dash last spring while at Lincoln University of Missouri before transferring to FSU.

In the men's 60 meter dash, another athlete for the Seminoles in Ismael Kone tops the field as the leading entrant with a 6.51 all-time best. Kone was an NCAA Division 1 nationals qualifier last spring in the 200 meter dash and finished 14th at nationals. He also earned All-American honors indoors last year in the 60 meter dash with a 5th place finish at NCAA's and is the reigning ACC champion in the event. 

The women's 200 meter dash will have 9 entrants with times under 25 seconds led by Kaniya Johnson of Florida Stae knocking on the door of sub 24 seconds with a 24.10 seed. Johnson ran 24.08 personal best last spring and also has a best of 11.85 in the 100. 

Isaac Joseph from St. Thomas is the clear cut favorite in the men's 200 meter dash as the sole sub 21 second competitor in the field with a 20.75 all-time best. Thomas was a NAIA Championships national qualifier last year in both the 100 and 200 meter dash outdoors.

The Florida State women have the fastest two athletes in the women's 400 meter dash in Gainesville this weekend with Kaelyaah Liburd (53.80 seed) and Ava Klein (55.80). Liburd is a native of the British Virgin Islands and last year finished 6th in the U-20 women's 400 meter dash finals at the Carifta Games. 

An unattached athlete in Tyler Abraham listed at 47.30 has the top seed time in the men's 400 meter dash and two more unattached athletes in Justin Moore and Troy Williams both seeded at 49.91 also will be amongst the fastest heats. St. Thomas has a pair of brothers in Mkhouri Crabbi (48.80) and Khamaura Crabbi (49.14) who could potentially go 1-2 together in the event. 

A fast section of the women's 800 will have a pack of runners in the 2:10's led by UCF freshman and Scottish native Hannah Taylor at 2:12 and a group of FSU women in Emily Brown, Bieke Schipperen, Rebecca Bergnes, and Jaden Francis all seeded under 2:15 individually. Schipperen ran 2:11 last spring at the Florida Relays, while teammate Brown is a transfer from Pittsburgh. Florida Atlantic will also be well represented in the top heat as well led by Anna Rovirosa and several of her teammates with personal bests times under 2:20. 

Recent St. Thomas Aquinas grad and Florida State freshman Anthony Herrera is the top entrant in the men's 800 meter run with a 1:51.82 personal best from his 4A state runner-up finish last May at University of North Florida. His top challengers include a quartet from the University of South Florida including two 1:54 performers in Gabriel Moronta and Aidan Dixon. Dixon, stepping up in distances, was one of the nation's top high school performers last year at 400 meters while starring at Port Orange Atlantic High School including a 46.98 performance on the same indoor track in Gainesville. 

Suus Altorf, a sophomore at Florida State and native of Netherlands, will be the overhwelming favorite to win the women's mile as she is seeded at 4:40 and has a 1500 meter best of 4:27. Altorf also has an 800 meter best of 2:06 from last year. Chasing after her will be two athletes from Florida Atlantic in Jessica Hatch and Anna Rovirosa, both seeded at 4:56. 

The Florida Southern College men will be spearheading the men's mile race with Alex Guy and Anthony Matthew leading the way as the top entrants at 4:14 each. Freshmen teammate Dylan Bailey should also be in the mix for a sub 4:20 effort, while Roger Reyes of St. Thomas will try to break up the Florida Southern pack as a 4:16 seed. 

A post-collegiate athlete from South Carolina in former University of Arkansas All-American Carina Viljoen headlines the women's 3K race with an 8:56 seed. She went under 9 minutes for 3K last April and also has run as fast fast as 4:07 for 1500 meters. 

Another post-collegiate with NCAA All-American credentials to her name in Amanda Vestri, competing for ZAP Endurance, will also be a strong contender to win the 3K with a sub 9 minutes seed time and has run under 16 minutes for 5K on the track and was an ACC champion at the distance.  She starred at both Iowa State and Syracuse University after a decorated high school career from New York.

Another athlete with ties to Iowa State in Ryan Ford, who was a NCAA Nationals qualifier in cross country and track for the Cyclones including a 13:34 lifetime best in the 5K, is one of the top athletes to watch in the men's 3K. Florida State men are loading up the race with 9 of the top 10 entrants in David Mullarkey, Ahmed Ibrahim, and Martin Prodanov all hovering about 8 minute seeds.

Mullarkey is coming off a stellar cross country season in which he finished 40th at the NCAA Division 1 Cross Country Nationals and has broken 8 minutes in the 3K before at 7:58 from last indoor season. 

Charisma Taylor will be ready to roll to a sub 8 clocking as the top seed and favorite in the women's 60 meter hurdles as the former University of Tennessee and Washington State gets underway with her post-collegiate career. Taylor was third in last year's NCAA Division 1 Indoor Championships in the 60 meter hurdles with a 7.93 clocking in the finals after a 7.91 PR in the prelims. Taylor also clocked a wind-legal best of 12.84 in the spring in the 100 meter hurdles and finished 10th at the NCAA Division 1 Outdoor Championships in the event. 

South Florida's Michael Bourne III is one of the top hurdlers in the American Conference as evident last spring winning the conference title in the 400 meter hurdles with a 50.86 clocking and also finishing third in the 110 meter hurdles with a 13.91 personal best. Bourne won last year's Jimmy Carnes Invitational in the 60 meter hurdles with a 7.93 personal best and aims to return to defend this Friday.

College Schedule for Jimmy Carnes Invitational (1/2/2024)