Rome girls in North Carolina for track and field nationals

HEADING TO NATIONALS — Rome’s Dana Husband, left, and Mariah Mays will compete in the nationals meet this week in Greensboro, N.C. Mays, a freshman, will compete in the emerging elite discus throw event today, while Husband, a junior, will participate in the emerging elite high jump on Friday. (Sentinel photo by John Clifford)

Rome Free Academy track athletes Mariah Mays and Dana Husband will conclude their season this week when they compete in the New Balance Nationals Outdoor Track and Field Meet beginning today at Greensboro, N.C.

Mays, a freshman, will compete in the emerging elite discus event today, and Husband, a junior, will go for a strong place in the emerging elite high jump contest on Friday.

Mays is coming off the best meet in her young career after capturing the discus throw in the Federation Meet on Saturday. She threw for a distance of 128 feet, breaking the school record as well as the Tri-Valley League record. It was Mays’ second trip to the state championships. It will be her second trip to the national championships after she qualified during the indoor track and field season.

Husband also went to the state meet last week but failed to register a height in the high jump after winning the event during the Section III Class AA championship meet.

"We’re going to be meeting the best of the best," said RFA girls track and field coach Brett Couchman. "The biggest thing is gaining experience, especially for Mariah who is only a freshman. They know where they need to be at states, now we’ll be taking another step closer to those who are close or at the collegiate level.

"They’ll be facing the best kids in the country and will be seeing who they are competing against for scholarships. This is one of those ways of exposing them to that," he added.

The meet is officially a non-school event, and expenses for the trip are being funded by donations.