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    SEC Saturday Track Update

     

    Georgia Track & Field Completes ‘Worthwhile’ Meet At Auburn
     
    AUBURN, Ala. --- Georgia’s track and field teams completed their weekend at a pair of meets with a variety of top performances on Saturday.
     
    The Bulldogs competed for the second day at the War Eagle Invitational in Auburn, Ala., and wrapped up their third day of competition at the Mt. SAC Relays in Walnut, Calif.
     
    “This was one of those meets where there was not a lot of (Southeastern Conference) level talent so we really just had to work on ourselves,” said head coach Wayne Norton, who accompanied the crew to Auburn.  “I think it was worthwhile to come here since we had plenty of good things happen.  We did a nice job of finishing at the top even when we didn’t put up some of the best times or marks that we have all year.  Overall, this was a good meet for our last one where we compete in individual events since next week’s Drake Relays is a different deal.”
     
    Freshman Shaunae Miller, who leads the nation in the 200-meter dash, ran her second race in the event and won with a time of 22.61.  Miller finished two spots ahead of her sophomore teammate Tynia Gaither, who sped to a 23.65.
     
    In the men’s 200, junior transfer Johnathan Smith clocked the 12th-fastest time in the nation this year with a 20.73 to finish first.  Smith, who already has the ninth-best time in the country in 2013, crept within a hundredth of a second of getting into the Bulldogs’ top-10 list.
     
    “Both of our people in the 200 did pretty well and I think they can build on this as the postseason comes,” Norton said.
     
    Also in the short sprints, freshman Briana Vaughn was the top collegiate finisher (fourth overall) in the 100 after shooting to an 11.67.
     
    “I though Briana did a great job versus some very high level folks,” said Norton. 
     
    Sophomore Morgann Leleux captured her second victory of the season in the pole vault.  Leleux, who won by a foot, reached 13 feet, 8 ¼ inches on her third attempt.
     
    After leaving his personal best in the 400 hurdles far behind last week, sophomore Drew Branch ran the fastest time for any collegian in the 400 with a personal-best time of 47.38.  Branch took third overall during his first outdoor race at UGA in the event.
     
    The Bulldogs swept the first three places in the men’s shot put with sophomore Nick Vena leading the way.  Vena had a fifth throw of 61-5 while junior Caleb Whitener opened with a 58-6.50 for second and freshman Ashinia Miller took third (57-11.75).
     
    The Lady Bulldogs won their second consecutive 4x100 relay race in as many weeks.  Vaughn and Miller combined with Gaither and sophomore Quintunya Chapman to clock a 44.89, which was their second-best mark of the season.
     
    Chapman returned to the track in the 400 and left with a career-best time of 54.76.  She was the second collegiate finisher and fourth overall.
     
    After a pair of second-place finishes, the Georgia men also won the 4x100 relay.  Freshman Jamario Calhoun, Smith, freshman Pierce Vincent and sophomore Justin Scott-Wesley made their lap in 40.81 to win by half of a second.
     
    The Georgia women managed a 1-2 finish in the steeplechase with Bret McDaniel (10:54.60) winning her first race at Georgia and Gabby Fulton taking second with an 11:14.05.
     
    Junior Burke McCarty earned runner-up honors in the discus by just one inch.  His third of six throws measured 175-8 as South Alabama’s Jan-Louw Kotze hit a mark of 175-9 on his final attempt.
     
    Also of note, freshman Leontia Kallenou cleared 5-11.25 on her second try for fourth place.
     
    One group of distance runners traveled to the Mt. SAC Relays, but several Bulldogs also competed in the longer distance runners in Auburn.  Sophomore Marrion Kalafut registered a career-best time of 17:41.42 for runner-up honors while senior Abbie Robinson finished with the fastest time of her season (17:52.28) for fourth place.
     
    The Georgia men grabbed the top collegiate finish and were second, third and fourth overall in the 5000.  Senior Brian Detweiler (14:54.78)  topped his teammates while Kyle James (14:55.36) and Steven Spevacek (14:56.54) finished right behind Detweiler.
     
    Junior Stella Christoforou also left Auburn with a second-place finish in the 1500 with a 4:31.91.
     
    “Our distance crew at the end of the day ran really hard,” said Norton.  “Maybe they didn’t win but they were going after it.  I thought that was a good sign and I hope that carries over.”
     
    In other action out west, sophomore Charles Grethen registered a personal-best time of 1:47.56 to take fifth in the 800 Olympic Development Elite race at the Mt. SAC Relays.  Running in his first outdoor season with the Bulldogs, Grethen finished in 1:47.56, which ranks third in school history and tops the nation’s No. 1 time coming into the weekend.
     
    On the women’s side, junior Megan Malasarte finished eighth after completing her race in 2:05.15.

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    No. 2 Razorbacks out-duel No. 4 Oregon in Eugene
     
    EUGENE, Ore. – After 18 events and three legs of the 4x400-meter relay, the dual meet between the No. 2 University of Arkansas men’s track and field team and fourth-ranked Oregon came down to the final 150 meters of the anchor leg. Razorback senior Akheem Gauntlett charged down the final straight to hold off Oregon’s Mike Berry to give his team the relay win and secure Arkansas’ 86-77 win over the Ducks on their home track Saturday at Hayward Field.  
    With Saturday’s performance, the Razorbacks also handed Oregon its first dual-meet loss since the 2000 season. Arkansas and Oregon entered the weekend as the top-two teams in the dual rankings compiled by Track & Field News. The Arkansas-Oregon dual was part of this weekend’s annual Oregon Relays. The meet played out in front of an announced crowd of 7,344 in the stands.
               
    “I’m really appreciative of the University of Oregon and its coaching staff having us here and creating this meet inside of a meet,” head coach Chris Bucknam said. “It was great for all of our guys to be in this atmosphere and compete at Hayward Field. It feels great to get a win today. The one thing about a meet like this is there’s no place to hide. It’s us against them. No matter what adversities you face, you have to step up to them.”
               
    Overall, the Razorbacks won 10 of the 19 events scored during the head-to-head competition. In addition to its first-place result in the 4x400-meter relay, Arkansas also racked up victories from Gauntlett at 200 meters, Caleb Cross in the 400-meter hurdles, Stanley Kebenei in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, Noah Kittelson in the high jump, Andrew Irwin in the pole vault, Tarik Batchelor in the long and triple jumps, Devin Randall in the shot put and the team’s 4x100-meter relay.
               
    The Razorbacks began the day facing a 16-point deficit after Friday night’s two-event start. Oregon owned a 17-1 lead to begin day two, and its advantage was as large as 18 points Saturday after a win at 100 meters put the home team up by a score of 52-34. Arkansas didn’t move into the lead until Batchelor and Irwin wrapped up wins almost simultaneously in the triple jump and pole vault, respectively. 
               
    Arkansas held an 81-77 lead heading into the 4x400-meter relay, the final event of the meet. Based on the scoring system, the winning team would receive five points with the runner-up getting zero. With the meet win up for grabs, the foursome of Cross, Gauntlett, Neil Braddy and Anton Kokorin responded with a winning time of 3:07.14. The Razorbacks finished .25 ahead of the Oregon relay team.
               
    “When I got the baton, all I’m thinking is ‘what’s going to happen?’” Gauntlett said. “Is he going to kick? When am I going to kick? I was just focused on not taking myself out of the race because (Mike Berry) is a great competitor. The crowd was great. They were yelling and just adding to the competitiveness of it being the last event. This was it and I knew I had to take it home.”
               
    Gauntlett and Cross were three-time winners Saturday in Eugene. Both were members of the 4x100- and 4x400-meter relays in addition to their individual wins. Gauntlett posted a season-best time of 20.55 to win at 200 meters and also finished second at 100 meters. Cross took first in the 400-meter hurdles in a time of 51.50, avenging an earlier loss to Johnathan Cabral in the 110-meter hurdles. The Razorbacks’ 4x100-meter relay team of Braddy, Cross, Gauntlett and Jarrion Lawson clocked in at 39.79.
               
    In the first steeplechase as a Razorback, Kebenei ran to the No. 3 time in the NCAA this season with his winning time of 8:43.67. That time moves him into 10th place on the program’s all-time performance list in the 3,000-meter steeplechase. Kebenei is the first Arkansas runner to crack the event’s top-10 list since the 2009 season when Scott MacPherson ran 8:38.87 at the NCAA Championships.
               
    For the second consecutive weekend, Batchelor was a two-time winner with his efforts in the long jump and triple jump. He began his day with a mark of 7.73m/25-4.5 to win the long jump and followed with a season-best mark of 15.93m/52-3.25 to win the triple jump. Batchelor’s measure in the triple jump was the second-best outdoor leap of his career. He and Anthony May II finished 1-2 in the event to push Arkansas into the team lead.
               
    Irwin picked up his third win of the season, but his first using borrowed poles due to a shipping miscue with Arkansas’ poles. The Razorback sophomore had a final clearance of 5.50m/18-0.5; he secured first place with a clearance at the previous height. With the win in hand, Irwin raised the bar to a would-be season best of 5.67m/18-7.25 but had three unsuccessful attempts. Kittelson led a 1-2-3 sweep for the Razorbacks in the high jump, taking first with a final clearance of 2.15m/7-0.5.
               
    Arkansas’ first win of the day came from Randall in the shot put. During the second round of throws, the redshirt freshman measured an outdoor personal best of 16.43m/53-11. That mark is more than a foot beyond his previous collegiate best of 52-0.5 from the season-opening Texas State Elite back in March. He returned for a second-place finish in the discus with a day’s best of 51.16m/167-10.
               
    “This win feels great,” Gauntlett said. “I heard (the PA) say they haven’t lost a dual meet since 2000 so to come here and win, it feels good. Plus, it’s just great running track here because the crowd is so supportive of what we’re doing. It was a lot of fun.”
               
    The Razorbacks will now travel back to Fayetteville to begin preparations for next weekend’s Arkansas Invitational. The one-day meet will be contested April 27 at John McDonnell Field and, in addition to the Razorbacks, will feature a field of teams that includes third-ranked Florida. Running events at the home meet are scheduled for a 3 p.m. (CT) start with field events beginning at 10 a.m.

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    MSU Track And Field Dominates At Ole Miss
     
    OXFORD, Miss. – Collecting eight first-place finishes, the Mississippi State track and field team boasted top performances in its rival’s territory, as Ole Miss hosted the Mississippi Open on Saturday. 
     
    The Lady Bulldogs captured multiple wins, as senior Allison Storey posted a season-best 139-02.00 in the javelin throw, and Alyssa Hall neared her best high jump clearance this year at 5-07.00. 
     
    Also shining for the MSU women included Jody-Ann Muir, who clocked a 54.07 in the 400-meter dash to earn a spot in first, along with Kanishia Carey who finished ahead of the pack in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:13.80.
     
    Chloe Phillips (4:25.66) and Emma Neigel (4:33.59) paced distance runners in the 1500-meter run, finishing second and third, respectively. Ebony Brinker and Sydney Rodkey garnered a pair of Top 3 field performances, as Brinker leaped a personal-best 40-09.75 in the triple jump and Rodkey pole vaulted 11-06.50. 
     
    On the men’s side, the Maroon and White posted Top 3 times and scores in all events in which they competed. Highlighted by Tavaris Tate’s first-place finish in the 400-meter dash, Dudley’s squad saw a day full of success. Juan Sanchez also earned a spot in first for the Bulldogs, as he finished the 1500-meter run in 3:49.10. Following Sanchez, freshman Patrick Monaghan clocked a 3:53.91 to finish third. 
     
    In the field, Pitor Antosik threw the javelin for 204-07.00, a score which ranks fifth on MSU’s all-time list. His performance earned him a second-place finish. Placing second and third in the long jump, A.J. Ward and Antavius McGhee leaped for 23-04.00 and 22-09.00, respectively. 
     
    State’s momentum continued as Jason Harper finished second in the triple jump (49-01.75) and Tate’s speed gained him a spot in third in the 200-meter dash (21.17). 
     
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    Ole Miss’ Isiah Young Blazes The Home Track At Mississippi Open
     
    OXFORD, Miss. – For the second weekend in a row, Ole Miss senior Isiah Young posted two of the world’s best times this year in the 100 and 200 meters, while he led the No. 11 Rebel men at the Mississippi Open on Saturday.
     
    The Ole Miss men and women racked up 13 total victories at the Ole Miss Track & Field Complex in their final home meet of the year and defeated Mississippi State in dual meet scoring.
     
    “It’s good any time you can have your in-state rivals come and compete,” said Ole Miss head coach Brian O’Neal. “It’s good for our sport. Anytime we host a meet on our campus, we want to make sure we’re putting our best foot forward.”
     
    Young was on fire Saturday, blazing to victorious times of 10.09 in the 100 and 20.39 in the 200 and also helping the 4x100 meter relay squad to a winning time of 39.90 and the 4x400 meter relay team to a victory in 3:10.57.
     
    Young’s 10.09 in the 100 is tied for third-best in the world this year and is second among collegians in 2013. The Junction City, Kan., native finished just .01 second from his school-record 10.08 from last year.
     
    His 20.39 in the 200 ranks him third in the world and second in the NCAA, as well. He also holds the school record in that event with a 20.16 last year.
     
    The 4x100 relay team of Quintavius Burdette, Anthony Branch, Creighton Serrette and Young clocked a season-best 39.90 to win the event. That time is tied for fourth-best in school history and ranks Ole Miss 14th in the NCAA this year.
     
    Saturday was also Senior Day for the Ole Miss track & field team. Three men and eight women were honored on the infield during the day – Morris Kersh, Isiah Young and Riley Young on the men’s side and Katie Breathitt, Kelsey Breathitt, Sofia Hellberg-Jonsen, Jazmin Miller, Marci Morman, Anne Threlkeld, Deonna Walton and Jasmine Williams.
     
    “I appreciate all the hard work that our senior group has put into performing admirably for the Red and Blue,” O’Neal. “For them to cap off their career and come up with some really good performances and go out on a high note is always what you want for your senior class, and I thought that happened today.”
     
    This year’s world leader in the pole vault, sophomore Sam Kendricks, had another strong outing with a facility record for the second week in a row. He cleared 18-1.25 to beat his facility record of 18-1 from last week. The world leader with a mark of 19-0.75 has now won nine straight regular-season pole vault titles.
     
    “You always want your stars to step up, and I thought again that Sam and Isiah had really good days for us,” O’Neal said. “As we get ready to head into championship season, we’re going to continue to lean on our stars.”
     
    Robert Semien claimed victory in the 110-meter hurdles with a personal-best time of 14.10 that moves him up to No. 5 in the school record books. He also moves into the top 50 nationally this year.
     
    Benjamin Lapane broke the meet record in the javelin with a personal-best heave of 218-0 to win the event. He remains third in school history with that throw.
     
    Other winners on the men’s side were Seumas O’Reilly in the 5,000 meters (14:58.88), the 4x400 meter relay (3:10.57), Malcolm Davis in the long jump (23-4.75) and Hunter Harrison in the discus (170-0).
     
    Haley Cutright continues to lead the Rebel women with her outstanding sophomore year. She won the 1,500 meters in a personal-best time of 4:25.40 that moves her up to No. 2 in the school record books. She also ranks top two in school history in the 3,000-meter steeplechase and 5,000 meters.
     
    Other Ole Miss victories on the women’s side included Marci Morman in the long jump (19-6) and the 4x100 meter relay squad of Shari Russell, Destiny Lundy, Jasmine Williams and Asia Cooper (45.61).

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    Tide Athletes Win 5 Events at LSU Alumni Gold Track Meet
     
    Baton Rouge, La. - University of Alabama track and field athletes won five individual events on Saturday against some of the nation's top athletes at the LSU Alumni Gold track meet at the Bernie Moore Track Stadium on the LSU campus.
     
    “Overall, I was disappointed today because we missed an opportunity to improve,” said head coach Dan Waters. “We had some chances to compete today and just were flat. We had some good performances, though. I was pleased with how Diondre (Batson), Krystle (Schade) and Alexis (Paine) competed today. Some fought through it while others fell short.”
     
    Sprinter Diondre Batson won the men's 100-meter dash and Andrew Harris won the men's B section 800 meters while Krystle Schade won the women's high jump and Alexis Paine won the women's pole vault. Batson, the 2013 world leader in the 100 after a 10.06 performance last week at Georgia, won the event in 10.26 this time, beating a quality field including Texas A&M's Ameer Webb (10.27) and Prezel Hardy, Jr. (10.30) and Aaron Ernest of LSU (10.35).
     
    Paine, ranked second in the college ranks in the women's pole vault this season, cleared 13-10 to win the event ahead of an excellent field. She outpaced her closest competitor, Stephanie Richartz of Illinois, by 5 3/4 inches. Schade is rounding into form after some minor injuries have limited her thus far in the outdoor season. She placed well ahead of South Florida's Courtney Anderson, who cleared 5-9 1/4 for second place. In the men’s 3,000-meter steeplechase, Parker Deuel won the event for Alabama in 9:30.55, just ahead of teammate Matt Joyner (9:39.83). 

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    NATOYA GOULE’S SCHOOL RECORD HIGHLIGHTS SATURDAY’S ACTION AT LSU ALUMNI GOLD
     
    BATON ROUGE – LSU junior Natoya Goule has taken the NCAA by storm as the nation’s leading middle distance runner in her debut season with the Lady Tigers, and she made history once again Saturday afternoon by breaking her own outdoor school record in the women’s 800-meter run at the LSU Alumni Gold held at the Bernie Moore Track Stadium.
     
    Goule won her first 800-meter race outdoors in 2013 at UCLA’s Rafer Johnson/Jackie Joyner-Kersee Invitational on April 6 when she first set LSU’s school record with a personal best of 2 minutes, 1.18 seconds.
     
    She slashed more than four tenths of a second off of her own school record with a winning run of 2:00.76 at the LSU Alumni Gold event that also broke the Bernie Moore Track Stadium facility record while lowering her NCAA-leading and World-leading time for the 2013 outdoor season.
     
    Goule’s effort set the pace for four performances by the Tigers and Lady Tigers on Saturday afternoon that cracked the Top 10 of the NCAA rankings this spring. Also dropping their NCAA rankings were senior Charlene Lipsey as the No. 2-ranked 800-meter runner, junior Nikita Tracey as the No. 5-ranked 400-meter hurdler and the Tigers as the No. 4-ranked 4x100-meter relay team.
     
    LSU’s athletes also wrapped up the day with eight personal-best performances and three event victories in the championship finals held Saturday afternoon.
     
    “I thought our athletes did a great job of doing what we asked them to do today. This was another positive step forward for both of our teams,” said LSU head coach Dennis Shaver. “The highlight of our day was seeing what Natoya Goule was able to do in the 800. It’s impressive to get on the Bernie Moore Stadium track and set a record with the events we’ve hosted and all of the athletes who have run here over the years.
     
    “I was also impressed by what Charlene Lipsey did today as she ran faster today than she did at this meet last year. That’s a great sign for where she is right now. We saw some significant jumps in our performances for the season. Nikita Tracey had a big breakthrough today. I liked how we ran the relays after shuffling our lineups a little bit.”
     
    Goule’s victory in the 800 meters proved to be the story of the meet as she neared the two-minute barrier again while setting a school record for the third-straight time in an 800-meter race.
     
    After being crowned the NCAA Indoor champion with an indoor school record of 2:02.00 in the 800-meter final at the NCAA Indoor Championships, Goule has now set a school record in each of her two races during the outdoor season with back-to-back lifetime bests of 2:01.18 at the Rafer Johnson/Jackie Joyner-Kersee Invitational on April 6 and 2:00.76 at the LSU Alumni Gold on Saturday afternoon.
     
    And she broke the Bernie Moore Track Stadium record by the slimmest of margins as former Lady Tiger standout Neisha Bernard-Thomas set the mark at 2:00.77 at the LSU Alumni Gold meet in 2010.
     
    Saturday’s race also featured LSU’s 2008 NCAA Indoor champion LaTavia Thomas as the Philadelphia native returned to her alma mater as part of the festivities at this year’s LSU Alumni Gold.
     
    Goule and Lipsey battled their predecessor to the finish line in an exciting finish as Thomas followed in second place at 2:02.72 and Lipsey finished the race in third place with a seasonal-best time of 2:03.13. Lipsey’s run is the NCAA’s No. 2-ranked performance behind Goule’s national-leading 2:00.76 and is more than two seconds faster than her opener two weeks ago.
     
    “Today felt a little bit easier than when we ran at UCLA because we paced it better,” Goule said following the race. “When Coach (Mark Elliott) said I was at 1:27-high at 600 meters, I knew I had a lot left in me and had a shot to run two minutes. I didn’t quite get there, but I finished the race pretty strong.
     
    “I didn’t expect to run that fast today coming in because I cramped up a little bit last week. But I felt good running the race and had a little bit left in me at the end.”
     
    Tracey also turned in a seasonal-best performance to rank among the NCAA’s elite while finishing runner-up in the women’s 400-meter hurdles to former Lady Tiger national champion Cassandra Tate.
     
    Tracey, who entered the meet with a seasonal-best time of 57.35 seconds in the event, raced to a personal record of 56.51 for second place behind Tate’s winning 56.40. Tracey held a slight lead over Tate as they raced over the eighth hurdle, but the former NCAA Champion surged ahead over the final hurdle and across the finish line for the win.
     
    While running a PR of 56.51, Tracey emerged as the NCAA’s No. 5-ranked 400-meter hurdler this season as she smashed her previous best of 56.89 set while running for Jamaica at the 2010 NACAC Championships. Two other Lady Tigers also ran seasonal bests in the race with matching times of 58.72 as sophomore Chanice Chase took fourth with a personal best and junior Shana-Gaye Tracey followed in fifth.
     
    The Tigers certainly set the tone on the track when lining up in the men’s 4x100-meter relay as they raced to a new seasonal best while also cracking the NCAA’s Top 5 in the event.
     
    While lining up with a team of senior Damar Forbes, sophomore Aaron Ernest, freshman Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake and senior Shermund Allsop for the first time this season, the Tigers passed the stick around the track in 39.24 for fourth place behind Texas A&M (39.02), the Tiger Olympians (39.16) and Team Canada (39.18) in the final. LSU is now ranked No. 4 nationally in the sprint relay this season.
     
    Allsop also ran wind-aided seasonal bests in both the 100-meter and 200-meter dashes with times of 10.39 (+2.3) for seventh place in the 100-meter final and 20.91 (+2.7) for third place in the 200-meter final.
     
    Ernest sprinted through the finish line with a time of 10.35 (+1.2) for third place in the first heat of the men’s 100-meter dash as he trailed Alabama’s NCAA leader Diondre Batson (10.26) and Texas A&M’s Ameer Webb (10.27). Mitchell-Blake followed Allsop in fourth in the 200 meters while running a wind-aided time of 20.98.
     
    “Our top athletes have been consistently performing well for us, but we’ve been needing our No. 2 and No. 3 people to step up and compete a little bit better than what they have to this point,” Shaver said. “They are the ones who we will be counting on at the SEC meet in a few weeks. That’s another area where it felt like we got a little bit better today as a team.”
     
    Making her final appearance at the Bernie Moore Track Stadium in an LSU uniform was Lady Tiger senior Kimberlyn Duncan, who is set to wrap up one of the more storied careers in collegiate history this season.
     
    After teaming with senior Latoya McDermott, senior Siedda Herbert and junior Toshika Sylvester to run 43.95 for second place in the women’s sprint relay final, Duncan cruised to an easy win in the 100 meters with her wind-legal run of 11.19 (+1.8) to take the tape ahead of Nike’s Chelsea Hayes (11.34) and Texas A&M’s India Daniels (11.44).
     
    It was Duncan’s final appearance in Baton Rouge in a remarkable collegiate career as a six-time NCAA Champion, nine-time SEC Champion and 11-time All-American with the Lady Tigers. The reigning Bowerman winner also had The Bowerman trophy on display during Senior Day festivities on Saturday afternoon to honor the career of one of the true greats of LSU Track & Field.
     
    Junior Karen Henning led the field-event action as she captured the women’s hammer throw crown with a series-best mark of 194 feet, 9 inches, while fellow junior Denise Hinton took third place in the event at 185-6.
     
    Two Tigers scored silver medals in the jumps as senior Damar Forbes posted a wind-legal mark of 25-0 ½ for second place in the men’s invitational long jump and sophomore Andreas Duplantis equaled his outdoor best with a clearance of 17-7 for second place in the men’s pole vault with the 16th-best mark in the NCAA this spring.
     
    Forbes was runner-up to former LSU All-American Jeremy Hicks in the invitational long jump as Hicks soared to a wind-aided 27-3 in the third round of jumps to finish more than two feet ahead of the Tiger senior.
     
    Sophomore Montenae Roye-Speight enjoyed her best performance as a Lady Tiger as she sprinted to her best collegiate time in the 400-meter dash at 53.70 for fourth place in the women’s final. 
     
    Other LSU athletes setting outdoor personal bests during Saturday’s action include junior Leigh-Ann Naccari with an eight-second PR of 17:34.70 in the 5,000 meters, sophomore Philip Dempsey with a run of 4:02.05 for the 1,500 meters, sophomore Bryan Mutell (15:48.81) and freshman Travis Pope (15:37.96) in the 5,000 meters and freshman Terry Hughes with a mark of 142-5 in the hammer throw.

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    Aggies total 23 wins amid impressive performances at LSU Alumni Gold
     
    BATON ROUGE – An impressive day of performances had the Aggie track and field team accumulating a total of 23 victories during the LSU Alumni Gold Invitational on sunny, yet windy Saturday.
     
    Texas A&M, with the men’s squad ranked No. 1 nationally and the women’s team ranked No. 2, registered 13 overall wins on the day while turning in the best collegiate finish in five events and claimed five B division victories. The Aggies also had eight runner-up performances.
     
    In his first open race of the outdoor season Deon Lendore won the 400 meters in a collegiate leading 45.00 seconds, lowering his career best of 45.13 from his Big 12 win a year ago. It’s the second fastest time in the world this season, behind a 44.72 from Kirani James of Grenada, and is No. 6 on the Aggie all-time list. 
     
    Lendore bettered a field that included Stephon Pamilton of Illinois (46.00), LSU alum Armanti Hayes (46.29), Darrell Bush of LSU (46.71), Juan Green of Illinois and Alabama’s Quincy Smith (46.72). Two more Aggies in the race included Ricky Babineaux (46.93) and Aldrich Bailey, Jr. (47.39), who placed seventh and eighth.
     
    “Since this was my first race over 400 outdoors I wanted to execute a good race,” said Lendore. “I had a good race plan and it came out well. I was rewarded with a good time from the race I ran.
     
    “I thought the race was going to be a little harder, but it felt great and was somewhat easy. I didn’t have many errors or complaints, so I’m happy and looking forward to the next one.”
     
    The previous collegiate best in the 400 for the 2013 outdoor season was a 45.54 by Bryshon Nellum of USC during the Florida Relays in early April. Lendore chopped 0.54 off that mark in setting his career best as he moves to No. 9 on the Trinidad & Tobago all-time list.
     
    Baton Rouge native Kamaria Brown produced the second fastest time in the world this season over 200 meters, under any conditions, as her wind-aided 22.47 (2.5 wind) led a crew of Aggie sprinters. 
     
    Ashton Purvis was the second best collegian in the women’s 200 and third overall with a 23.16 while Ashley Collier (23.20w) and Olivia Ekpone (23.40w) followed with solid times.
     
    The men’s 200 had a huge head wind as Ameer Webb won with a time of 20.59 into a -3.6 wind. Adjusting for the wind would have produced a 20.32 PR for Webb. Louisiana Tech’s Trey Hadnot had an edge on Webb coming of the curve, but Webb charged down the homestretch for the victory as Hadnot finished second in 20.78.
     
    “I’m happy with my time,” said Webb. “These races tend to feel like they are back-to-back. So, I had to rally a little bit of strength towards the end just to win the race. The result was a good time into a nasty wind.” 
     
    In the men’s 4x100 the Aggies posted a winning time of 39.02 over the Tiger Olympians (39.16), with 2008 Olympic 100m silver medalist Richard Thompson on the anchor leg, as well as a team from Canada (39.18) and LSU (39.24). Running for A&M were Webb, Bailey, Jr., Michael Bryan and Prezel Hardy, Jr.
     
    Webb and Hardy later finished second and third, running in separate heats, in the 100 meters. Webb clocked 10.27 (1.2 wind) in a close finish with Alabama’s Diondre Batson (10.26) and LSU’s Aaron Ernest (10.35). Hardy claimed the second heat in 10.30 (2.3 wind) to placed third overall.
     
    “In the 100 I’m a little bitter,” noted Webb. “I broke my posture at the end of the race and it cost me the win. But it’s a good thing since I know what I did. Next time I’ll know what to do.”
     
    The A&M women cruised to a 43.64 victory over a 43.95 from LSU with Canada third in 44.00. The Aggie relay consisted of LaKeidra Stewart, Purvis, Brown and Collier. A second A&M group won the second heat in 44.87 and placed fourth overall with a foursome of India Daniels, Olivia Ekponé, Jennifer Madu and Ibukun Mayungbe. 
     
    In the women’s 100 Daniels placed third overall and was the second best collegian with an 11.44 (1.8) career best that makes her No. 12 on the A&M all-time list. LSU’s Kimberlyn Duncan won the race in 11.18 with professional Chelsea Hayes second in 11.34. Daniels finished ahead of teammate Madu, who ran 11.53.
     
    Sophie Blake set a career best of 4:24.39 to win the 1,500 over a 4:28.42 from Meropi Panagiotou of Alabama and a 4:29.92 by Tessni Carruthers of Nicholls State. Blake’s time ranks No. 4 on the Aggie all-time list with the No. 6 performance.
     
    Another impressive middle distance race came from Aggie frosh Hector Hernandez, who won the 800 in a career best of 1:49.35, which is No. 11 on the A&M all-time list. Henry Lelei placed second in the race with a 1:50.05 while Josh Hernandez ran 1:50.67 for fourth.
     
    Aliese Hyde recorded a career best of 2:07.53 in the women’s 800 to place seventh and move to No. 3 on the Aggie all-time list. LSU’s Natoya Goule set a stadium record with a 2:00.76 win.
     
    Juan Blanco finished as the top collegian in the men’s 1500 as his time of 3:49.68 topped the 3:49.79 by Paul Skirt of Louisiana Tech with A&M’s tandem of MacLean O’Donnell (3:51.77) and C.J. Brown (3:52.43) following.
     
    In the hurdles Donique’ Flemings and Wayne Davis II finished second only to a pair of Olympians while placing as the top collegians. Flemings ran a windy 13.08 (4.2 wind) behind a 12.80 for Lolo Jones, an LSU alum who placed fourth in the Olympics last summer.
     
    Davis clocked 13.65 (-0.2 wind) behind a 13.37 for Aries Merritt, the Olympic gold medalist in London and the world record holder. LSU alum Barrett Nugent placed third in 13.72.
     
    Over 400-meter hurdles Greg Coleman turned in a career best of 50.67 to place first with Louisiana Tech’s Yusuf Muhammad second at 50.90 and Cam Viney of Illinois third with a 51.86. Also setting a career best was A&M’s Aikan Graham with a 52.22 for fourth place.
     
    Placing third overall, but as the top collegian in the women’s 400, Ibukun Mayungbe turned in a 52.99 as she finished behind professionals Jessica Beard (51.62) and Rebecca Alexander (52.89).
     
    Field event victories started early in the morning for the Aggies as Dalton Rowan threw 186-6 (56.84) for first place in the men’s discus while Shelbi Vaughan claimed the women’s title with a 186-8 (56.90) to maintain her undefeated season among collegiate competition. 
     
    Vaughan, who hit her winning mark in the opening round, produced the third best performance for the A&M frosh this season and she topped the field by 25 feet, seven inches. In dealing with a tailwind during the event, Vaughan put together an impressive series – 186-8 (56.90), 184-10 (56.34), 175-1 (53.38), 175-1 (53.38), 177-0 (53.96), 177-5 (54.08). 
     
    Another pair of field event victories came in the women’s triple jump and men’s hammer. 
     
    LaQue Moen-Davis went 42-2.75 (12.87) to win the triple jump with teammate Madu third with a 41-3.25 (12.58). South Florida’s Marqueshia Stallworth finished second with a 41-6 (12.65) while LSU’s Keri Emanuel had three fouls. Casey Strong threw the hammer 198-9 (60.58) as the top collegian and second overall.
     
    Distance wins in the 5,000 meters were achieved by Gabby Salazar (17:30.47) and James Hodges (14:59.07). Colin Slattery placed second to Hodges in the men’s race with a 15:13.01.
     
    A final victory on the day slipped from the Aggies grasp in the men’s 4x400 relay. A&M took over the lead on the homestretch of the final lap with Lendore anchoring. However, Lendore eased up too soon and Illinois anchor Pamilton claimed the win in the final step to the finish line.
     
    “I was too complacent at the end of the race,” explained Lendore. “After I moved into the lead I kind of cruised to the finish line not thinking about who was behind me or anything else. That is something I will never do again, because I don’t really like to lose.” 
     
    Illinois won in 3:04.58 with Texas A&M second at 3:04.65 while LSU finished third in 3:07.04. Running for the Aggies were Babineaux (46.7), Bailey (46.6), Roudette (46.1) and Lendore (45.2).
     
    Dave Brown placed fourth, and was the second collegian, in the Invitational triple jump with a mark of 50-9.5 (15.48). 
     
    Jena Hemann led the A&M javelin crew with a second place finish, hitting a mark of 147-10 (45.06) to place behind the 152-1 (46.36) win by Jaimee Springer of Nicholls State. Kendall Munoz placed third (139-0) with Jean Deason fourth (138-8), Krystyn Bradley fifth (130-11) and Kelly Czumble eighth (129-5).
     
    Pole vaulting had Chase Wolfle and Dustin Phillips each clearing 16-9.25 (5.11) for sixth and seventh place. In the women’s vault Brittany Wooten cleared 12-2.5 (3.72) for 10th place.
     
    Among nine B division events the Aggies participated in A&M claimed five victories and had a pair of runner-up finishes.
     
    Ryan Miller claimed the 1500 in 3:59.17 while Olivia Ekponé and Carlyle Roudette each won their 400 meter race with times of 53.72 and 46.73. Roudette set a career best with his win. Jonathan Turner finished first in the long jump with a wind-aided 23-3.25 (2.9 wind) while Chandrell Stephens had a windy 24.27 (2.3 wind) to capture the 200 meters.

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    Gator Track & Field Claims Eight Titles at Tom Jones Memorial Classic
     
    GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The Florida track & field teams finished up their final home meet with a flourish, tallying eight titles at the Tom Jones Memorial Classic on a rainy Saturday at Percy Beard Track.
     
    “I thought the meet went well,” Florida head coach Mike Holloway said. “We had a little bit of a snafu with the timing system (to delay the meet). Obviously would’ve loved the weather to be a little warmer but I think it’s just preparing us for a little bit later on in the year in Eugene. I thought everybody competed well.”
     
    The Gators swept the hammer throw, as senior Jeremy Postin (Andover, Kan.) and sophomore Jayla Bostic (Wellington, Fla.) captured the hammer crowns with throws of 65.21m/213-11 and 56.91m/186-8, respectively. 
     
    The Florida men also finished 2-3-4 in the event, as sophomore Kyle Strawn (Temecula, Calif.) improved his standing at second all-time in program history with his second-place throw of 64.05m/210-2. David Triassi (Jacksonville, Fla.) and David Levin (Altamonte Springs, Fla.) rounded out the UF effort with their throws of 61.54m/201-11 (a new PR) and 58.02m/190-4, respectively.
     
    “Those guys did a wonderful job today,” Holloway said. “Coach (Steve) Lemke continues to do a great job with that group and they’re all really dialed in to him and what he wants from them, so I’m really proud of that group. I think two of the four guys PB’d today so we’re really happy for them. David Triassi is just a great guy so really happy for him. Not that the other guys aren’t but him being a senior and his last home meet, it’s special for him to have a quality big (personal best).”
     
    Senior Ugonna Ndu (Newark, N.J.) won the final home meet of her Gator career, taking the collegiate women’s 100-meter hurdles in 13.34 (+1.6). Junior Eddie Lovett (West Palm Beach, Fla.) was the top-finishing collegian in the men’s 110-meter hurdles, racing to an all-conditions season’s best of 13.46 (+3.0).
     
    “This was kind of Eddie’s breakthrough weekend last year,” Holloway said. “I think you saw the same thing this year. Eddie’s working on some things and we’ve been training really hard but I was really pleased for him. Fastest time of the year and we’re moving in the right direction.”
     
    Other winners for the Gators included Ciarra Brewer (Union City, Calif.) in the women’s triple jump (13.28m/43-7), Taylor Burke (Medina, Ohio) in the women’s high jump (1.80m/5-10.75), Luka Mustafic (Rakitje, Croatia) in the men’s shot put (17.72m/58-1.75), Stephanie Strasser (Fernandina Beach, Fla.) in the women’s 1,500 meters (4:23.66), and Jimmy Clark (St. Johns, Fla.) in the men’s 3,000 meters (8:10.21).
     
    “Jimmy did a great job,” Holloway said. “I know he wanted to run faster but it wasn’t quite the pace he wanted early-on and a little chilly but it was a win and it just shows what kind of fitness he’s in as he moves forward. He’s going to run the 10K from here on out so it was a good test for him.”
     
    Freshman Robin Reynolds (Miami, Fla.) was the top-finishing collegian in the women’s long jump, leaping to a personal-best-tying 6.25m/20-6.25 to finish third. Another Gator with a PB was senior Amani Bryant (Tampa, Fla.), who finished third overall in the women’s 400-meter hurdles with her time of 57.91, good for fifth all-time at Florida.
     
    Freshman Arman Hall (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) was impressive in the men’s 200 meters, finishing second ahead of 15 professionals in 20.73 (+1.6). Hugh Graham, Jr. (Miami, Fla.) was the top-finishing collegian as well, taking sixth overall in the men’s 100 meters in 10.38, his first attempt at running the event.

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    UK Track & Field Opens Outdoor Facility In Style 
     
    LEXINGTON, Ky. – Kentucky opened the new UK Outdoor Track and Field Facility in emphatic fashion winning all but one of the 29 events the team entered at the inaugural collegiate Heart of the Bluegrass Classic on Saturday.
     
    “The point today was less about performance, more about putting on a good show for the crowd,” head coach Edrick Floreal said. “We also wanted the alumni to be part of this after 17 years without an outdoor track meet. It was more of a thank you. 
     
    “We wanted to make sure people understood that we appreciate them coming out here and supporting us as a team. Hopefully we can enlist their (UK alumni and fans) support in the future so we can develop and build as a team.”
     
    Cally Macumber and Michelle Canterna, set the school records in their respective events. 
     
    Macumber’s mile time of 4:37.75 shattered the previous outdoor top time, and bettered former NCAA 3K Champion Lisa Breiding’s record. Macumber spent much of the race running alongside fellow cross country and indoor All-American Chelsea Oswald, who posted her own personal best mile time 4:40.84.
     
    Canterna came within inches of clearing the school outdoor pole vault record late last month in Cincinnati, so it came as little surprise that she made it UK’s previous threshold while competing in front of the home crowd. She ultimately cleared the new outdoor school record vault height at 3.87 meter /12’08.25”.
     
    Competing in his first, and last, home outdoor meet Keith Hayes enjoyed a spectacular day as he won all four of the events he entered. As a highlight Hayes took the baton from fellow senior Ben Mason to anchor a meet-concluding victory in the 4x400-meter relay.
     
    The Wildcats honored their seniors on Saturday. Katy Achtien, Kevin Bonfield, Hayes, Shelby Kennard, Mason, Shiara Robinson, Danielle Sampley, Luis Orta and Megan Wright’s UK careers were recognized in a moving ceremony toward the end of the afternoon.
     
    Given the chance at easing through a relaxing meet program, the Wildcat seniors instead leaped at the opportunity to perform before the Big Blue Nation for the first time outdoors.
     
    “I told the seniors that I just wanted them to do one event so they could be part of the action, but they all refused,” Floreal said. “They wanted to do multiple events because this was their first time ever competing at home. We let them run and they went out there and enjoyed it.”
     
    Robinson also excelled in multiple events on Senior Day. She won the 400-meter hurdles with a season-best 1:02.62, before raising an arm in victory while crossing the finish line as the anchor leg of UK’s victorious 4x400-meter relay squad.
     
    Sampley won the 100 meters in 11.99, while she also placed second in the 100-meter hurdles.
     
    Heading into the meet the women’s 200 meters appeared as if it would be among the meet’s headlining events as the top heat would feature a stacked field that featured four of the fastest Wildcats at that distance all-time. 
     
    The actual race did not disappoint, as Morganne Phillips edged Keilah Tyson with a time of 23.78 (2.8 wind). Tamyah Pipkin placed third, Angelica Whaley and Sampley finished fifth and sixth respectively.
     
    Andrew Evans won two events, claiming the discus and hammer throw. The 2012 All-American’s hammer mark of 57.70 meters / 189'4" was a personal best.
     
    Rebecca Famurewa won the shot put, discus and hammer throw, highlighted by a PR 53.64 meters / 176' 0" throw in the latter event.
     
    Bradley Szypka won his second-straight shot put title on the back of an outdoor season best 18.15 meters / 59'06.75”.
     
    Kadeem Kushimo swept the 100 and 200 meters for the second time in as many weeks.
     
    A number of former Wildcat greats, as well as current staff members also posted impressive performances. Two-time long jump Olympian and volunteer assistant coach Arantxa King won her specialty event. 
     
    Graduate assistant Ann Detmer stuck with Macumber and Oswald for the duration of the mile as she placed second with a time of 4:39.35. Three-time All-American and 2008 NCAA Discus Champion Rashaud Scott placed third in the discus, and fourth in the javelin.
     
    Fans in attendance also participated in the UK track and field shoe drive this weekend. Spectators have the option to donate any type of shoes in any condition into collection bins, which will be located at the front entrance to the track and field complex.
     
    The Kentucky Track and Field team is running the shoe drive benefitting those less fortunate around the world for the third consecutive year.