OXFORD, Ohio - After concluding its indoor season a month ago, the Miami University women’s track and field team travels to Nashville, Tenn. Friday to kick off its 2014 outdoor season at the Vanderbilt Black & Gold Invitational hosted by Vanderbilt University at its track complex.

Meet action begins Friday at 4 p.m. with the hammer throw, shot put, triple jump, and pole vault, followed by the 200m run at 5 p.m. Day one of the meet concludes at 6:15 p.m. with the 1500m invitational race. Action resumes Saturday at 10 a.m. with the discus throw, and wraps up at 5:20 p.m. with the 4x400m relay.

The RedHawks will face a tough field of teams, competing against athletes from IPFW, Western Kentucky, Tiffin, Murray State, Alabama A&M, conference rival Ohio University, and the host Vanderbilt, among others.

At last year’s Black & Gold Invitational, Miami garnered three event victories, beginning with the 3000m run where junior Anna Lamb clocked a personal-best 9:48.48. Lamb will defend her title this weekend when she competes in the race with teammates Melissa Girgis, Jessica Hoover, and Mattie Moncayo. In field action, senior Tori Paterra won the javelin by over 23 feet with a heave of 46.95m. The RedHawks then won the 4x400m relay in 3:44.72, setting a new meet record and earning the third-best time in school history.

The RedHawks are coming off a disappointing finish at the 2014 MAC Indoor Championships, tying for eighth with Bowling Green State University. Junior Anna Lamb led the RedHawks at the conference meet, taking third in the 5000m run in 16:48.47. She then took second in the 3000m run in a career-high 9:44.49, which now ranks sixth on Miami’s all-time list. Freshman Alexus Jimson-Miller had a strong showing in her first conference championship as a RedHawk, taking fourth in the 60m hurdles in 8.61.

As Miami begins its outdoor season, it will look to improve upon its fourth-place finish at last season’s MAC Outdoor Championships. The RedHawks garnered five event titles at last year’s conference meet, starting with Lamb who won the 10,000m in 35:06.56. Alumna Layne Baggett won the 100m hurdles title for the third consecutive year in 13.32, earning the Most Outstanding Track Performer honor at the meet for her impressive achievement. Alumna Diona Graves then won the 100m dash in 11.66, and the RedHawks swept both relay titles, winning the 4x100 relay in 45.29 and the 4x400m relay in 3:39.51.

With the conclusion of the Vanderbilt Black & Gold Invitational, the RedHawks will return home April 4-5 to host the Miami Invitational.