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    SEC Track and Field Weekly Notebook

    2011 Track and Field Weekly Notebook (3/30) Upcoming Schedule April 1 Alabama at Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.) Arkansas hosts Razorback Spring Invitational (Fayetteville, Ark.) Auburn hosts Tiger Track Classic (Auburn, Ala.) Florida hosts Pepsi Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.) Georgia at Pepsi Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.) Kentucky at Pepsi Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.) Ole Miss at Pepsi Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.) Mississippi State hosts Bulldog Friday Nite Invite (Starkville, Miss.) South Carolina at Pepsi Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.) Vanderbilt at Colonial Relays (Williamsburg, Va.) Vanderbilt at Tiger Track Classic (Auburn, Ala.) 2 Alabama at Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.) Arkansas hosts Razorback Spring Invitational (Fayetteville, Ark.) Auburn hosts Tiger Track Classic (Auburn, Ala.) Florida hosts Pepsi Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.) Georgia at Pepsi Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.) Kentucky at Pepsi Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.) LSU hosts LSU Invitational (Baton Rouge, La.) Ole Miss at Pepsi Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.) South Carolina at Pepsi Florida Relays (Gainesville, Fla.) Tennessee at UCLA (Los Angeles, Calif.) Vanderbilt at Colonial Relays (Williamsburg, Va.) Vanderbilt at Tiger Track Classic (Auburn, Ala.) Team Notes Alabama Junior Kaylon Eppinger scored 5,499 points, the highest score in the nation this season, in the heptathlon at the Alabama Relays … the score places her second on the Alabama all-time list … junior Nichole Sides finished 10th with a personal-best score of 4,328 … in the hammer throw, junior Angelica Howards threw 186-3 to finish in second place … senior Kim Laing won the 100 meter hurdles with a time of 13.49 … Eppinger recorded a time of 13.80 to finish third while Audra Frimpong ran a time 14.50, finishing sixth … sophomore Wilamena Hopkins finished third in the shot put with a mark of 49-09.75 while Angelica Howard finished fifth with a throw of 46-01.50 … sophomore Camilla Armstead recorded personal-best times of 24.10 and 56.33 in the 200m dash and 400m dash, finishing third and fourth … the 4x100 meter shuttle hurdle relay team of Kim Laing, Audra Frimpong, Talaya Owens and Kaylon Eppinger recorded a time of 56.60 to win the event …. junior Toni Graham teamed up with Frimpong, Laing and Eppinger to finish third in the 4x100 meter relay, running a time of 47.33 … freshman Chloe Hetherton posted a ark of 38-04.00 in the triple jump to finish second while junior Kia Wansley finished fourth with a leap of 37-10.50 … in the javelin competition, senior Meghan Austin threw a personal best 160-04 for second place … junior Brittany Hines finished third with a throw of 132-03 … the 4x400 meter relay team of Devon Romero, Talaya Owens, Camilla Armstead and Dacia Mays finished second with a time of 3:44.61. Arkansas Men The No. 14 University of Arkansas men’s track and field team competed in a triangular meet Friday along with No. 17 Texas and No. 23 UCLA in Austin. Wins came from Marek Niit in the 100 meters, Dorian Urley in the 800 meters, Duncan Phillips in the 3,000 meters and Tarik Batchelor in the long jump. The Razorbacks finished third in the team race with 106 points. Running at the Stanford Invitational, Eric Fernandez posted a sixth-place finish and time of 28:48.44 in the 10,000 meters late Friday night in Palo Alto, Calif. Arkansas will host the Razorback Spring Invitational this Saturday at John McDonnell Field in Fayetteville. Field events begin at 1 p.m. (CT) and running events start at 3 p.m. Women The No. 9 University of Arkansas women’s track and field team opened their outdoor season Friday at the Stanford Invitational in Palo Alto, Calif. During the two-day competition, the Razorbacks came away with wins by Shelise Williams in the 400 meters and their 4x400-meter relay team of Williams, Gwendolyn Flowers, Regina George and Whitney Jones. The team also had runner-up performances by George in the 200 meters and Shantel Thompson in the long jump. Arkansas returns to the track Saturday for the Razorback Spring Invitational at John McDonnell Field in Fayetteville. Field events begin at 1 p.m. (CT) and running events start at 3 p.m. Auburn Men Auburn's men won three event titles as the Tigers opened the 2011 outdoor season Saturday at the SEC/Big Ten Challenge hosted by Mississippi State. The Tigers had the top two finishers in the men's discus, and both were freshmen. Redshirt freshman Stephen Saenz won the competition with a mark of 55.92 meters (183-5), which ranks sixth best in Auburn history, while true freshman Marcus Popenfoose was second with a throw of 53.07 meters (174-1). Popenfoose also placed third in the men's shot put with an effort of 16.44 meters (53-11.25), while Saenz was ninth in the hammer throw with a mark of 51.99 meters (170-7). Auburn did well in the sprints, winning the 100 and 200 meters. In the men's 100 meters, freshman Keenan Brock won the individual title, racing to a time of 10.36 seconds to edge Ole Miss All-American Michael Granger by .02 seconds. Sophomore Harry Adams won the men's 200 meters, zipping to a time of 20.74 seconds, which ranks eighth best in Auburn outdoor history. The time is more impressive considering that Adams ran into a strong headwind. The Tigers will host the Tiger Track Classic this Friday at Saturday at Hutsell-Rosen Track. Women Auburn's women won three event titles as the Tigers opened the 2011 outdoor season Saturday at the SEC/Big Ten Challenge hosted by Mississippi State. Auburn did well in the sprints, winning the 200 meters and 4x100-meter relay. Sophomore Kai Selvon was the winner of the women's 200 meters, posting a solid time of 23.38 seconds - into a stiff headwind - to win by a comfortable margin. Auburn won the 4x100-meter relay by more than half a second, as the team of freshman V'Alonee Robinson, senior Sheniqua Ferguson, Selvon and junior Nivea Smith clocked a time of 44.39 seconds. Smith also finished a close second in the women's 100 meters, recording a time of 11.81 seconds into a headwind while finishing just .01 seconds behind the race winner. Auburn's other victory came from sophomore Maya Pressley, who won the women's high jump title, clearing 1.77 meters (5-9.75). Two jumpers cleared that bar, but Pressley won the individual title because she had no misses up to that point. The Tigers will host the Tiger Track Classic this Friday at Saturday at Hutsell-Rosen Track. Florida Men The No. 1 University of Florida men’s track and field team plays host to its premier event of the season this weekend when it puts on the 67th Pepsi Florida Relays at Percy Beard Track at James G. Pressly Stadium. The Gator men won five events this past weekend at the UCF Invitational in Orlando, Fla. Sophomore thrower Jeremy Postin shattered his own school record in the men’s hammer throw with a winning toss of 64.70m/212-3, which bettered his previous school-record mark of 60.58m/198-9. He became the first person in school history to throw better than 200 feet in the men’s hammer throw. Zane Breakiron, competing for the Gators for the first time, won the men’s javelin with a toss of 59.62m/195-7. Senior pole vaulter Eric Foran captured the men’s pole vault with a leap of 5.05m/16-6.75. Freshman distance runner Matt Mizereck won two events at the UCF Invitational, claiming the men’s 1,500-meter run in a time of 3:52.93, before directing a 1-2-3 finish by the Gator men in the 800-meter run with a winning time of 1:51.88. The Pepsi Florida Relays take place this Friday and Saturday at Percy Beard Track at James G. Pressly Stadium. The Florida Relays began more than 70 years ago in 1939, thanks to the vision and creativeness of the Gators’ legendary head track and field coach Percy Beard. Since that first meet 72 years ago, the Pepsi Florida Relays have grown in epic proportions from the small regional competitions on April Fool’s Day that featured 209 competitors, to one of the nation’s premier track and field meets. Women The University of Florida women’s track and field team plays host to its premier event of the season this weekend when it puts on the 67th Pepsi Florida Relays at Percy Beard Track at James G. Pressly Stadium. The Gators are coming off a strong weekend at the UCF Invitational in Orlando, Fla. Freshman sprinter Darshay Davis competed in both the women’s 100-meter dash and 200-meter dash, placing third in the 100m in 11.80 (-0.9) and sixth in the 200m in 23.90 (+0.7). Sophomore jumper Alexis Muniz nearly matched her personal best in the women’s high jump, tying for third place with a leap of 1.63m/5-4.25, while junior thrower Fidela James placed second in the women’s shot put with a toss of 15.33m/50-3.50. Senior pole vaulter Daisy Glasser was third in the pole vault competition, tying her season-best mark of 3.80m/12-5.50. The Pepsi Florida Relays take place this Friday and Saturday at Percy Beard Track at James G. Pressly Stadium. The Florida Relays began more than 70 years ago in 1939, thanks to the vision and creativeness of the Gators’ legendary head track and field coach Percy Beard. Since that first meet 72 years ago, the Pepsi Florida Relays have grown in epic proportions from the small regional competitions on April Fool’s Day that featured 209 competitors, to one of the nation’s premier track and field meets. Georgia Men Georgia traveled to both the Arizona State Invitational (Tempe, Ariz.) and the SEC vs. Big Ten Challenge (Starkville, Miss.) during the second weekend of the team's outdoor season. In Tempe, the Bulldogs tallied three wins with some of the top marks in the nation this year. Freshman Justin Welch, who swept the hammer and the discus at the season opener last week to win SEC Field Athlete of the Week honors, won the two events again with personal-best efforts. Welch threw the hammer 222 feet, 4 inches to improve his No. 3 spot on the national performance list (No. 1 in the SEC) and move to No. 8 on UGA's all-time top-10 list. The Luckey, Ohio, native returned in the discus to let go of a 182-8 throw to win the competition by a foot. Junior Brian Moore made his season debut in the javelin and finished with the second-best meet of his career. Moore opened with a mark of 239 feet to best Baylor senior Nick Lyons (236) with the fifth-longest throw in the nation this year. In addition, sophomore T.J. Davilmar had the longest throw of his career in the shot put (56-6.50) to take second. At the SEC vs. Big Ten Challenge, sophomore Danny Neff recorded a personal-best time of 1:52.80 for runner-up honors in the 800 meters to pace UGA. Junior Torrin Lawrence also opened his outdoor season by clocking a 20.88 in the 200 for fourth place. Georgia will return to action at the Florida Relays in Gainesville, Fla., on April 1-2. Women Georgia traveled to both the Arizona State Invitational (Tempe, Ariz.) and the SEC vs. Big Ten Challenge (Starkville, Miss.) during the second weekend of the team's outdoor season. The Lady Bulldog throwers highlighted the weekend with a convincing victory and two career-best efforts. Junior Nikola Lomnicka made her return after an offseason knee injury and launched an effort of 209 feet to pick up a 21-foot win. This is the third-longest throw in the nation this year (longest in the SEC). Junior Colleen Felix, who was an indoor Second Team All-American in the triple jump after taking 10th at the national meet, had a personal-best throw of 156-3 to take second in the javelin and move to sixth on the UGA all-time top-10 list. This is the second-longest effort in the SEC this year and 16th on the national performance list. In the shot put, freshman Hilenn James continued her development as she let go of a career-best throw measuring 51-4.25 to take fourth. This performance rocketed James to second in the school record books and moved her to 14th on the national performance list. In Starkville, sophomore Leslie Boozer bettered her No. 3 time on the UGA all-time top-10 list by taking second in the steeplechase with a time of 10:44.71, which is third in the SEC and 21st overall in the nation. Senior Georgina Nembhard came through with a personal-best finish of 23.58 in the 200-meter dash to take third and improve her No. 7 spot in the school record books. Fellow senior Odeika Bent also earned runner-up honors in the 400. Competing in a pair of jumping events, sophomore Saniel Atkinson took third in the triple with an effort of 40-9.50 and tied for third in the high jump after clearing the bar at 5-7.75. Georgia will return to action at the Florida Relays in Gainesville, Fla., on April 1-2. Kentucky Did not compete LSU Men If its performance at the LSU Tiger Relays this past weekend is any indication, the No. 5-ranked LSU men’s track and field team will surely be a force to be reckoned with in the relay events throughout the 2011 outdoor season. The Tigers opened with impressive NCAA-leading performances in both the 4x100-meter relay and 4x400-meter relay, while they also set a new Bernie Moore Track Stadium record in the 4x200-meter relay in sweeping event titles over the weekend. LSU recorded its fastest season-opening performance in program history in the 4x100-meter relay as the team of junior Barrett Nugent, junior Horatio Williams, junior Keyth Talley and senior Gabriel Mvumvure clocked an eye-popping 38.87 seconds in the preliminary round on Friday night. They returned to the track for Saturday’s final and cruised to victory in 39.43, giving LSU the two fastest times run by collegiate teams this season. Three members of the 4x100-meter relay team also ran on the 4x200-meter relay team that set a new stadium record on Saturday as junior Riker Hylton joined Williams, Talley and Mvumvure to clock the second-fastest time in program history at 1 minute, 20.99 seconds. Their performance trails only the school-record time of 1:20.85 set in 1995 in the LSU record books. The Tigers then wrapped up the meet by running a new 2011 indoor and outdoor seasonal best in the mile relay as junior Robert Simmons, junior Ade Alleyne-Forte, Hylton and sophomore Caleb Williams combined for a 3:03.77 clocking to establish a new LSU Tiger Relays meet record. Also recording impressive 2011 outdoor season openers for the Tigers were Nugent in the 110-meter hurdles with a wind-aided time of 13.61 seconds in the final and senior Marcus McGehee in the pole vault with a new outdoor personal best of 17 feet, 4 ½ inches. The Tigers return to action on Saturday as they play host to a scored competition with the LSU Invitational at the Bernie Moore Track Stadium as they welcome the likes of national power Texas A&M, Illinois, Iowa, Connecticut and Army to Baton Rouge for the inaugural event. Women The No. 3-ranked LSU women’s track and field team has gotten off to a fast start to the 2011 outdoor season following an impressive weekend in hosting the LSU Tiger Relays on Friday and Saturday at the Bernie Moore Track Stadium. Two Lady Tigers set impressive personal bests en route to earning SEC Athlete of the Week honors this week as junior All-American Rachel Laurent won the women’s pole vault and freshman All-American Jasmin Stowers won the women’s 100-meter hurdles during Saturday’s championship finale. Laurent set a new LSU Tiger Relays meet record, Bernie Moore Track Stadium facility record and LSU outdoor school record with a first-attempt clearance at 14 feet, 2 ½ inches as she was named the SEC Female Field Event Athlete of the Week for her performance. With a clearance at 14-2 ½, Laurent broke her own LSU school record of 14-1 ¼ that she set as a freshman during the 2009 season. Stowers continues to show the form that earned her All-America honors during the indoor season as she captured the women’s 100-meter hurdles title with a new wind-legal personal best and NCAA-leading time of 13.15 in Saturday’s final. Stowers, who shattered her previous PR of 13.52 entering the meet, picked up her second SEC Female Freshman of the Week honor this season on the strength of her national-leading performance. The Lady Tigers also set a pair of new Bernie Moore Track Stadium records on the weekend in the relay events as the team of sophomore Latoya McDermott, junior Semoy Hackett, junior Jonique Day and sophomore Kimberlyn Duncan won the 4x200-meter relay with a time of 1 minute, 32.33 seconds, and the team of sophomores Brea Goodman, Laura Carleton, Dakota Goodman and Charlene Lipsey won the 4x800-meter relay in 8:57.72. Also enjoying impressive performances to open the 2011 outdoor season near the national leaders were senior Tenaya Jones in the 100-meter hurdles (13.28), junior Cassandra Tate in the 400-meter hurdles (57.84) and freshman Jen Clayton in the long jump (20-5). The Lady Tigers return to action on Saturday as they play host to a scored competition with the LSU Invitational at the Bernie Moore Stadium as they welcome the likes of national power Texas A&M, Illinois, Iowa and Army to Baton Rouge for the inaugural event. Ole Miss Men Ole Miss athletes set some of the nation's best marks as the 2011 outdoor season continued with the SEC/Big Ten Challenge this past weekend. The competition featured SEC schools Ole Miss, Auburn, Georgia and Mississippi State against Big Ten foes Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State and Purdue. The Big Ten men out-scored the SEC men 399-337. Martin Kirui won the 3,000 meter steeplechase and Kentrell Sanders won the triple jump for the Rebels. Kirui won the steeplechase with a time of 9:06.65, which is 11th-best in the nation this year. Sanders, a freshman, won the triple jump in his second straight meet, topping his previous mark with a leap of 51-00.00. Morris Kersh finished third in the triple jump with a personal-best mark of 50-06.25. Both Rebel jumpers rank among the nation's top 10 in the event (Sanders 4th, Kersh 9th). The men's sprinters also excelled in Starkville. Mike Granger and Jonathan Juin finished 2-3 in the 100 meters with times of 10.38 and 10.44, respectively. In the 200, Juin crossed the finish line in 20.81 seconds, which ranks him tied for fifth in the country. In the men's sprint relays, Ole Miss finished second in the 4x100 (40.31) and third in the 4x400 (3:11.41). The 4x100 team of Dante Oliver, Juin, Caleb Lee and Granger ranks 11th in the country and 10th in school history with that time. Ole Miss will compete this weekend at the Florida Relays in Gainesville. Women Ole Miss athletes set some of the nation's best marks as the 2011 outdoor season continued with the SEC/Big Ten Challenge this past weekend. The competition featured SEC schools Ole Miss, Auburn, Georgia and Mississippi State against Big Ten foes Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State and Purdue. The Big Ten women prevailed over the SEC women, 379-349. Betty Williams crushed her own school record in the discus throw with a colossal mark of 176-11, which won the event in Starkville and ranks sixth in the nation this season. Her previous record was 161-11, set in 2009. Also claiming wins were Kristin Bridges in the 400 meters, Sofie Persson in the 400 meter hurdles, Aria Gaines in the triple jump and the 4x400 meter relay team. Bridges out-raced her 400 meter competition to finish with a time of 54.56, just off her personal best of 54.38. Persson claimed her second straight 400 meter hurdle victory with a time of 58.81. She ranks seventh in the nation in the event. Gaines leaped a personal-best 41-06.50 to win the triple jump and now ranks among the top five in school history in the event. Her jump is tied for fourth in the country this year. The women's 4x400 meter relay team of Lauren Hollingsworth, Bridges, Sofia Hellberg-Jonsen and Persson posted a very impressive winning time of 3:36.62, which currently ranks second in the nation, as well as fifth in school history. Four Rebels who compete in the women's heptathlon traveled to Tuscaloosa for the Alabama Relays over the weekend. Brittany Bozeman finished third and Fabia McDonald turned in a fourth-place effort with 4,846 and 4,803 points, respectively. They rank ninth and 10th in the country, respectively, in the heptathlon. Ole Miss will compete this weekend at the Florida Relays in Gainesville. Mississippi State Men Senior Emanuel Mayers led the way for the Bulldogs with a first-place finish in the 400m hurdles (52.82) and fourth place in the 110m hurdles (14.31). Sophomore Tavaris Tate also had an impressive day as he placed second in the 400m dash (46.61) and third in the 200m dash (20.87). Freshman James Harris continued his dominance in the high jump placing second (7-03 ¾) behind the NCAA Indoor Champion Derek Drouin of Indiana . MSU junior Ed Wesela posted a second-place finish with his shot put throw of 55-05 ½. The 4x400m relay team of Harris, junior O’Neal Wilder, sophomore Daundre Barnaby, and Tate, closed the day for the Bulldogs as they brought the entire crowd to its feet and got the cowbells ringing with their winning time of 3:05.24. Women State’s Lady Bulldogs were led by senior Richesa McCaleb who won the 100m dash (11.80) and was runner-up in the 200m (23.56). Sophomore Haley Greenwell had an impressive day, winning the 3000m run in 9:56.38, as did freshman Rochelle Farquharson who placed second in both the triple jump (41-05 ¾) and long jump (19-06 ¼). Also posting second place finishes were sophomore Chloe Phillips in the 1500m run (4:33.74) and the 4x400m relay team of senior Taneisha Baker, sophomore Brittany Covington, sophomore Jody-Ann Muir, and McCaleb. South Carolina Men South Carolina posted five wins at the rain-shortened Weems Baskin Invitational. Senior Antonio Sales won the 200-meter dash at 21.22, and freshman Clayton Gravesande won the 400-meter dash at 47.66. Senior Matt Shuler won the pole vault at 16-07.25 (5.05m) in his first jump of the outdoor season despite the steady rain. Both relay teams earned wins with the 4x100m running 40.57 and the 4x400m running 3:14.13. The Gamecocks travel to the Pepsi Florida Relays this weekend. Women South Carolina dominated the Weems Baskin Invitational with seven wins, highlighted by a 1-2-3 finish in the 100-meter dash that saw Shayla Mahan (11.20), LaKya Brookins (11.36) and Gabrielle Glenn (11.45) run three of the top five times in the nation. Mahan's personal best 11.20 is the top wind-legal time in the NCAA and the world. In the 400-meter dash, freshman Sanura Eley-O'Reilly improved her time to 54.76 for the first outdoor victory of her career. The Gamecocks swept the hurdles with junior Kierre Beckles winning the 100-meter hurdles (13.29) and senior Janica Austin winning the 400-meter hurdles (1:01.35). Both relay teams earned victories with the 4x100m running 44.88 and the 4x400m running 3:49.18. Freshman Scola Jepngetich won the 800m at 2:17.24. South Carolina travels to the Pepsi Florida Relays this weekend. Tennessee Men The Vols tallied a victory and seven runner-up performances at the UCF Invitational in Orlando in the opening weekend of outdoor action…Junior Desmond Brown collected the sole win, leaping to 24-1 ¾ in the long jump…Runner-up efforts came from redshirt freshman Chase Brannon with a PR in the pole vault (15-3), sophomore Drew Thomas with a PR in the hammer throw (182-4), redshirt freshman Daniel Tobin with a PR in the 3000m steeplechase (9:40.05), redshirt freshman Jordan Chaney with a PR in the 1500m (3:54.67), junior Deaundra Dailey with a PR in the 400m (47.74) as well those via the 4x100m (40.32) and 4x400m (3:11.49) relays...UT also had three men in action on the West Coast at the Stanford Invitational…The best of that bunch was Peter Sigilai, who placed fifth in Section 2 in 3:51.16...Football players Justin Hunter and Matt Darr are focusing on spring football right now and will resume their track & field activities after the spring game…Ben Bartholomew is redshirting in track & field outdoors and is focusing totally on football this spring…The Vols head to Los Angeles next week to compete in a dual meet vs. UCLA. Women The Lady Vols won four events and got two runner-up finishes at the UCF Invitational, and they added a school-record performance at the Stanford Invitational in the team’s opening outdoor weekend…Returning after redshirting indoors this season and outdoors a year ago, junior Annie Alexander picked up where she left off, sweeping shot and discus titles in Orlando with marks of 54-7 ¼ and 180-8, respectively…Junior Ellen Wortham added a victory in the 400m hurdles in 58.32, while senior Holly Kane snared one in the javelin with a career-best fling of 143-1…Freshman Kianna Ruff (800m) and the 4x400m relay took second for UT with marks of 2:09.75 and 3:40.66, respectively…At Stanford, senior Liz Costello broke a 26-year-old school record in the 10,000 meters, running 33.25.66 to finish seventh in the fast section…She crushed Alison Quelch’s 1985 mark of 34:08.9…UT is off to Los Angeles next weekend to compete against UCLA in a dual meet. Vanderbilt The Vanderbilt women’s track team hosted its annual Black & Gold Meet on Friday and Saturday at the VU Track & Field Complex. In the 3000 meter race, the Commodores took first, second, third, fourth and seventh places, led by freshman Liz Anderson. Rita Jorgensen finished first in the 800-meter race with a time of 2:08.75, which currently leads the SEC. Jordan White posted a personal best time in the 1500 meter race, finishing second with a time of 4:28.64. Alexa Rogers came in fourth in the 1500 with a time of 4:35.14. Meagan Martin set a new school record in the pole vault after clearing 12’1.5”. Freshman Brionne Williams continued to perform well in the high jump, placing second with a height of 5’6.5”. The Commodores travel to the Colonial Relays in Williamsburg, Va. this weekend.