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    SEC Track & Field - Friday Update

    Gamecocks Collect Two Wins on First Day of Weems Baskin Invite

    COLUMBIA, S.C. –  On the first day of competition at the Weems Baskin Invitational, the South Carolina track and field team picked up two wins in four events.  The home meet is the first of two at the Weems Baskin Track this season. Freshman Olivia Hassler won the women’s javelin and sophomore Megan Wall was tops in the women’s pole vault.

    Hassler posted her first collegiate win in her first collegiate competition as she threw for 139-01 (42.39) in the women’s javelin.  The throw from the freshman is the third best in South Carolina history.

    Later in the day, Wall cleared 11-11 ¾ (3.65m) in the pole vault competition to take the win. Redshirt junior Tylar Mangan recorded a top-five finish with her clearance of 11-07 ¾ (3.55m).
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    HARRISON WINS HAMMER TO OPEN MSU CONFERENCE CHALLENGE

    STARKVILLE, Miss. – Senior Lady Vol thrower Jessie Harrison took first place and the Big Orange throwers combined for four top-five finishes in the hammer throw to open the outdoor season at Mississippi State’s Conference Challenge on Friday evening.

    With only the men’s and women’s hammer throw on day one, Harrison recorded a mark of 157-feet, 3-inches (47.92m) on her second throw of the competition. The senior edged out Ole Miss’ Jazmin Miller’s mark of 156-10.5 to earn 10 points for the Lady Vols in the scored meet.

    In her first career meet, freshman Katelyn Williams registered a fourth-place finish after tossing the hammer a personal-best 126-feet, 5.25-inches (38.53m). The Nashville native added four points for UT.

    Freshman Vol thrower Cameron Brown, who recorded a Tennessee freshman record in the weight throw during the indoor season, led the Big Orange men in the event with a second-place throw of 180-2.75 (54.93m). The mark came on the rookie’s sixth and final attempt.

    The Vols also got a top-five finish and personal-record performance from Deon McAdoo. The sophomore placed fourth with a PR mark of 167-5 (51.02m) to add four more points to the Vols day one total. Redshirt freshman Carson Frost finished eighth with a top mark of 143-6.75 (43.75m).

    Tennessee is joining forces with Ole Miss and Mississippi State to represent the SEC in a conference vs. conference meet. The top six places in each event earn point totals of 10, 8, 6, 4, 2 and 1, respectively. The points will then be pooled together and both a men’s and women’s team champion will be crowned. Illinois and Purdue are carrying the banner of the Big Ten, while Missouri State (women) and Louisiana Tech represent the Missouri Valley Conference and the Western Athletic Conference, respectively.
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    Florida Track & Field Trio Picks Up First Career Victories

    ORLANDO/TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Three Gators took home individual victories Friday as the Florida track & field teams opened the 2013 outdoor season at the FSU Relays and UCF Invitational.

    Sophomore Kyle Strawn (Temecula, Calif.) captured the first hammer throw title of his career with a new personal best of 62.20m/204-1. Strawn bested his previous PB from his freshman year at UC-Santa Barbara by exactly 20 feet. Strawn is now second all-time in the event at Florida.

    Junior Shelby Hayes (Winter Park, Fla.) raced to the first individual victory of her track career in the women's 1,500 meters, running to a 4:23.67 finish just ahead of teammate Mandy Perkins (Ormond Beach, Fla.), who came in second in 4:25.15. Junior Stephanie Strasser (Fernandina Beach, Fla.) also turned in a top-five finish with her fifth-place time of 4:31.22.

    Freshman Jimmy Clark (St. Johns, Fla.) clinched a victory in his first outdoor campaign with a 3:48.12 finish in the men's 1,500 meters. Clark was one of four Gators to finish in the top 10 in the event.
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    Georgia Track & Field Surges Into Second Outdoor Meet

    TUSCALOOSA, Ala. --- The Bulldog track and field teams competed during the opening day of the John Mitchell Alabama Relays in Tuscaloosa, Ala., on Friday as the participating teams prepared for a rainy day two on Saturday.

    Junior Elizabeth Tepe starts the action for UGA on Saturday in the women’s hammer throw at noon ET.  The women’s 4x100-meter relay is the first event on the track during day two starting at 7 p.m.

    There is a 60 percent chance of thunderstorms in the Tuscaloosa area on Saturday as a majority of Georgia’s team members prepare to compete.

    On Friday, senior Saniel Atkinson-Grier matched her opening meet performance of 5 feet, 8 ¾ inches to be the top collegiate finisher in the high jump.  Former Lady Bulldog All-American and two-time Olympian Levern Spencer (6-0.75) was the only competitor to top Atkinson-Grier, who cleared her first height on her second try after passing the first three heights.

    In the 1500, senior Leslie Boozer set a personal best (4:34.60) to win her heat and take third overall.  Her junior teammate Nicole DiMercurio also had a career-best time of 4:44.63.

    The Bulldog men went 6-7-8 in the 1500 with freshman Zane Coburn (3:53.87) leading the way.  Sophomore Charles Grethen bettered his time from a week ago to 3:54.20 while freshman Zack Sims finished in 3:54.47.

    Also of note, sophomore Marrion Kalafut ran the fastest time of her career (18:01.76) to take 11th in the 5000.
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    TIDE OPENS OUTDOOR SEASON WITH MEMORABLE DAY AT ALABAMA RELAYS

    TUSCALOOSA, Ala. –Freshman Elias Hakansson shattered a school record in the men's hammer throw to lead the University of Alabama track and field team on the first day of competition at the 2013 John Mitchell Alabama Relays at Sam Bailey Track Stadium on the UA campus. That victory was one of three individual event wins and two relay victories for the Crimson Tide on Friday.

    Hakansson obliterated a 15-year-old record in the hammer, eclipsing the previous school mark of 195 feet, 4 inches set by Derrick Jones in 1998. He did so on his first attempt in a series of five attempts in which all three of his legal throws exceeded Jones' mark. Hakansson finished the day with a best of 210-0 (64.01 meters) and ended the day owning the three best throws in UA history. His first effort traveled 209-5 (63.83m) and his other legal attempt traveled 203-10 (62.14m).

    The native of Halmstad, Sweden, now owns the indoor weight throw school record and the outdoor hammer throw mark in his first season at the Capstone.

    Charodd Richardson also had a strong day in the hammer, placing fifth with a best of 184-2 (56.14m), the eight-best throw in UA history. He also had solid efforts of 170-3 (51.91m) and 177-8 (54.15m) in his series. All of those exceeded his career best entering the meet.

    Alabama also picked up victories in the women's 1,500 meters as Kimberley Ficenec posted a time of 4 minutes, 28.23 seconds to win convincingly ahead of Indiana's Samantha Ginther (4:31.98). Meropi Panagiotou was fourth in 4:34.82.

    The Crimson Tide swept the men's and women's 1,600-meter sprint medley relays. The women's quartet of Sarah Thomas, Joy Maneice-Marbury, Dacia Mays and Yanique Malcolm won the event in a time of 3:56.53 ahead of Iowa (3:58.72). The men's relay team of Dwight Davis, Joel Lynch, Quincy Smith and Ken Taylor won their race in 3:20.52 to beat Indiana (3:23.47) and Iowa (3:24.25).

    Alabama had a strong showing in the men's triple jump as Tide athletes took three of the top eight places in the event. Imani Brown led the way with a personal-best performance of 49 feet, 10 1/2 inches (15.20m) to place second behind Georgia Tech's Jonathan Gardner (51-11 3/4 - 15.84m). Alabama's Jonathan Reid was third at 49-10 (15.19m) with George Freiberger eighth at 46-9 (14.25m).

    Adam Duckworth destroyed his personal best in the 5,000 meters by more than 30 seconds on the way to a victory in a time of 14 minutes, 32.42 seconds, more than five seconds ahead of Cincinnati's Kevin Fink who finished second in 14:37.96. Katelyn Greenleaf was fourth in the women's 5k in a time of 17:16.74.
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