NEWPORT, R.I. - Salve Regina University women's track and field head coach Matt Hird has announced captains for the 2018 squad - seniors Olivia Conway, Megan Jenkins and Devin Smith and junior Alex Demeo will lead the Seahawks.
Olivia Conway has been a mainstay of the throwers over her first two years as a Seahawk. Specializing in the shot put and the javelin, Olivia captured second place in both events in the 2016 conference championship as the Seahawks swept to victory. For her senior year, Conway has forsaken the throws and transformed herself into a sprinter.
"Even though recurring knee injuries have restricted her training and competition, Olivia keeps striving to produce her best performances and is a constant source of encouragement and humor," Hird comments.
"Megan Jenkins was similarly chosen for her ability to lead by example. Her constant improvement in the 400m inspires her fellow sprinters who see in Meg how doing everything the right way and always maintaining a positive and supportive attitude can produce significant performance gains."
Jenkins finished off her junior year by running the third leg on the New England Championship 4x400m relay which recorded a school-record time of 4:11.00, and she is poised for career bests this spring.
Devin Smith has been the preeminent long sprinter since she arrived on campus three years ago. She owns three of the top ten fastest 400m times in Salve Regina history. After a first year filled with hamstring injuries incurred in high school, Devin broke out and consistently improved in the 400m. As a junior she also took on the high jump where she leaped a consistent 4'10" and the triple jump where she worked her way up to 35' efforts. This season Devin will undertake the Heptathlon, and learn three new events in the process.
"Devin is excited about her new challenge," remarks Coach Hird. "Her approach to the multi-event is the same as her approach to any competition, any practice, all her teammates – fun, laughter, respect and determination."
Alex Demeo has rewritten the distance racing record books during her time at Salve Regina, shattering the program record for 10,000 meters – twice – during the 2017 outdoor season. She earned All-New England honors for her fourth-place finish at 10,000m in the New England Championship. Demeo is an all-conference honoree in cross country and shares the program record for aggregate time at 6,000 meters. Not one to rest on her laurels, Demeo will aim to further improve the school records in the long distance events this spring.
Rob McGuinness, assistant track and field coach and head cross country coach, praises Demeo, "Alex approaches her training with enthusiasm and dedication, and her attitude and work ethic set the tone for our distance group. She embraces challenges and settles for nothing less than her best, and she encourages her teammates to do the same."
"These outstanding women set the tone for success. Our team this year is in great hands," asserts Coach Hird.