HPU women’s track adds four recruits for next fall

HIGH POINT, N.C. — The High Point University women’s track & field team has added four recruits for the 2013-14 season. Alyn Carr and Alexis Fernandez will compete in the sprints and jumps while Cozette Collin and Natalia Ocasio will compete in distance events, including cross country.

“These four recruits along with the ones we’ll add later this spring will fill a lot of the gaps we have in the sprints and middle distance events,” said HPU head coach Mike Esposito. “Natalia and Cozette will be immediate contenders in the 800, 1500 and mile while bolstering our cross country team. Alyn provides us with a short sprinting threat that has been missing. Alexis adds another horizontal jumper who can score in conference championships.”

Carr is from Christianburg, Va., and competed in the short sprints and long jump for Blacksburg High School. She was state champion in the indoor 55-meter dash in 2011 and was runner-up in the outdoor state championship in the 100-meter dash in both 2011 and 2012. She has career bests of 7.06 in the 55-meter and 12.06 in the 100-meter. At the Ridge River District Invitational in 2012, Carr set career bests while winning both the 300-meter (41.97) and long jump (18-2.5). She was also multiple-time region champion and her team won state titles in 2011 and 2012.

Collin is a cross country and middle distance runner from Brantford, Ontario. She attended Assumption College and ran for the Brantford Track & Field Club. Collin ran a career-best 2:14.4 in the 800-meter while placing second in the 2012 Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations (OFSAA) West Regional and ran a career-best 4:42.65 in the 1,500-meter in the 2012 OFSAA Championship preliminaries. Collin was an OFSAA finalist in both the 800-meter and 1,500-meter three times in a row and a three-time OFSAA cross country qualifier. She has a career-best of 18:27 for 5K in cross country.

Fernandez is from Hauppauge, N.Y., and competed in the triple jump, 400-meter and hurdles for St. Anthony’s High School. This past indoor season, Fernandez won the triple jump with a career-best 38-4 at the CHSAA Championship, took fourth in the New York state championship and placed 12th at New Balance Indoor Nationals. She was a member of the runner-up 4×400 relay team at the 2011 indoor state championship. Fernandez’s team was multiple-time league and city champion.

Ocasio is a multiple-time All-American as a member of relay teams from Mount Laurel, N.J., and Lenape High School. She earned All-America honors in the indoor distance medley relay and outdoor 4×800 relay in 2012 and in the indoor 4xmile in 2009. Her 4×800 relay team was state champ in 2011. Ocasio has career bests of 2:13 in the 800-meter, 4:54 in the 1,600-meter and 18:24 in the 5K. She was also a four-time first-team All-South Jersey selection and Burlington County Runner of the Year in cross country.

High Point opens its outdoor season on Friday and Saturday at the Wake Forest Open in Winston-Salem, N.C. The Panthers finished third in the Big South Cross Country Championship last fall and took sixth in the Big South Indoor Championship last month.