May 16, 2003
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – South Carolina’s second day of competition at the SEC Outdoor Championships was highlighted by a SEC record set by Fred Townsend and a trio of athletes advancing to the finals in both the 400m hurdles and 200m dash. After two days of competition, the women are tied for fourth with 11 points while the men are in seventh with three points.
Fred Townsend set a SEC record in the decathlon running of the 110m hurdles. Townsend ran a 14.23 in the 110m hurdles portion of the decathlon, smashing the old record of 14.45 set by Lawrence Johnson of Tennessee in 1996.
“Fred had a great run,” said Carolina Head Coach Curtis Frye. “He has run faster but not during the decathlon. Even after that performance, he is in a tough fight as the field in this decathlon is the best the SEC has seen in some time. If he can finish in the top five it was be great.”
In the 400m hurdles, three athletes qualified for the finals as Tiffany Ross (57.34), Shevon Stoddart (57.88) and Tawana Watkins (1:00.67) all recorded NCAA qualifying marks. Lashinda Demus missed the 400m hurdles check-in and by SEC rules, is ineligible to compete in the remainder of the meet.
In the men’s 400m hurdles, Kenneth Ferguson ran the day’s best time, sending him to the finals with a NCAA qualifying mark as he ran 49.81. Charles Ryan also ran a NCAA qualifying mark, running 52.69 as he finished 13th overall in the preliminaries.
Aleen Bailey (23.23) and Erica Whipple (23.43) advanced to the finals of the 200m dash as they both set NCAA qualifying marks. Bailey recorded the top time in the 200m dash for the day while Whipple’s time was the best of her heat.
Boikhutso Ramomene finished ninth overall in the 800m run with a time 2:10.82, a mark that sends her to the finals on Sunday. On the men’s side, Otukile Lekote qualified for the finals of the men’s 800m run finishing ninth overall in the preliminaries with a time of 1:49.52.
Antoinette Wilks placed third with 5,208 points and Chelsea Hammond fourth with 5,022 points in the women’s heptathlon. The duo finished 1-2 in the long jump, led by Hammond’s win.
Fred Townsend finished first in the 110m hurdles race of the decathlon on his way to a sixth overall placing in the event, scoring 7,136 points. Teammates Garry Martin (10th; 6,667 pts.) and Ben Yocum (12th; 5,573 pts.) also competed in the two-day decathlon competition.
In the women’s hammer throw, Keri Groover set a personal best mark of 147′ 5 as she finished 25th. Her former personal best mark was 144′ 9″.
Day three of the four-day meet begins Saturday at 3:30 p.m. EDT at the University of Tennessee’s Tom Black Track. Live results can be found at www.utsports.com.