Feb. 25, 2010
Clemson, S.C. - The Western Carolina men and women's indoor track and field team finished day one of the Southern Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships held at Clemson University on Thursday. The Catamount men are in first and the women second after a completion of 33 events.
WCU leads rival Appalachian State by two points, 62-60, in the men's competition after participating in 11 events on Thursday. The women are just three points shy of first place, as the Mountaineers lead 53-50.
Freshman Cordell Livingston broke the Southern Conference indoor record in the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 8.06 seconds in Thursday's preliminary round. On the women's side, Western Carolina dominated the preliminary rounds with six Catamounts qualifying in the 200-meter dash and four Catamounts each in the 60-meter and 400-meter dash.
Livingston, who provisionally qualified for the NCAAs earlier this year with a mark of 7.85 seconds, shattered the previous conference-best of 8.20 seconds set by former Catamount Lawrence Briscoe on Feb. 26, 2005. Livingston finished 37-tenths of a second higher than his nearest competitor's Cavan Cocoran from Samford and WCU's Christian Bethune (8.43, 3rd). Bethune, Livingston and Sean Reardon all qualified for the 60-meter hurdle finals on Friday.
In the 60-meter dash, Dominique Young continued his strong season with a first-place mark in the prelims with a time of 6.88 seconds. Bethune (6.96, 7th) and Brandon Hairston (7.02, 8th) also qualified for the finals.
Four Catamounts qualified for the finals in the men's 200-meter dash as Young again topped the bunch with a time of 21.93. Benny Davis (22.27, 4th), Hairston (22.22, 3rd) and Livingston (22.51, 8th) all will compete in tomorrow's final round.
Hairston placed third in the 400-meter dash, running the distance in 49.81 seconds for a third-place mark. Stephon Roach (50.82, 8th) and Davis (51.00, 5th) will run in tomorrow's finals as well.
Junior Drew Tucker ran the 800-meter run in a time of 1:54.11 for a first-place mark in the prelims on Thursday. The men's distance medley team (Garrett West, Drew Tucker, Stephon Roach and Stephen Hammond) earned a podium finish of second place with a time of 10:10.29 minutes.
In the field events, Matt Evans earned top-billing with a distance of 2.09 meters in the high jump. Evans, a native of Old Fort, N.C., leads the field in the heptathlon with a total of 2,901 points after four events.
Michael Osteen placed fourth in the pole vault with a height of 4.77 meters.
Felicia Paulding notched second with a time of 7.74 seconds in the preliminaries of the 60-meter dash. Sherelle Froneberger (7.75, 3rd), Raven Parrish (7.69, 4th), Jane't Carothers (7.72, 7th) and Valerie Parks (7.87 seconds, 8th) rounded out the qualifiers for WCU on Friday.
The Catamounts earned six out of eight qualifying spots in the 200-meter dash finals with Carothers (24.83, 1st), Garren (25.02, 2nd) and Froneberger (25.17, 3rd) rounding out the top-three. Paulding (25.23, 4th), Parrish (25.51, 5th) and Emma Bowers (25.88, 6th) rounded out the top finishers for WCU.
In the 400-meter dash, Carothers again led the way with a season-high time of 55.71 for first. Garren followed with a time of 56.37 for second, Shalyn McMichael third with 58.51 and Bowers seventh with 58.81 seconds.
Junior Nicole Okolo set the school record in the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 8.70 seconds for first place in the first round. Carlyn Wright (8.84, 4th) and Jettana Thomas (8.91, 8th) also earned berths to the 60-meter hurdle finals on Friday.
Olivia Jacobs earned a podium finish in the women's 3,000-meter run with a season-high time of 10:14.57, while Jordan Gaddy garnered fourth with a mark of 10:17.33. The WCU distance medley squad (Jordan Gaddy, Hannah Bowers, Shalyn McMichael and Morgan Turner) earned fourth with a time of 11:32.38.
Senior Tiana Jones placed fifth in the long jump with a distance of 5.55 meters. Meanwhile, WCU garnered first and second in the shot put as sophomore Deirdra Morrison won the event with a throw of 12.98 meters and Zakiyyah Stewart placed second at 12.96.
Thomas earned a podium finish in the pentathlon after accumulating 3,314 points and placing second in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:30.32.
Western Carolina will conclude the Southern Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships beginning Friday morning at 9:15 am until the final event at 4:40 pm. Live coverage of the events can be found online at cfpitiming.com. Recaps of the event will be available online at CatamountSports.com.