May 17, 2003
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – South Carolina athletes set four personal record marks and qualified 14 athletes for the finals of the SEC Track and Field Championships Saturday at the University of Tennessee despite a two hour 50 minute delay for severe weather. It was the second such delay of the SEC Championships as severe weather once again plagued the Knoxville area. Two tornados were confirmed touching down on Wednesday, which sent the first day of the SEC Championships into a three hour 18 minute delay. No such tornadic activity was reported during Saturday’s delay.
Carolina sends three athletes to the finals of the women’s 400m dash on Sunday as Miki Barber, Shevon Stoddart, and Tawana Watkins finished 3-6-7 in the preliminaries as Stoddart and Watkins both set personal best marks. Barber ran a time of 53.09 to easily win her heat and finish third overall. Stoddart placed sixth overall and ran a time of 53.54 eclipsing her old personal best of 53.71. Watkins placed seventh overall with a time of 53.95, also setting a new personal best mark topping her old mark of 54.40.
On the men’s side, Otis Harris and Jonathan Fortenberry both qualified for the finals of the 400m dash. Harris finished second in the preliminaries overall, winning his heat with a time of 45.90. Jonathan Forteberry finished sixth overall in the preliminaries, running a time of 46.27. Both will compete in the 400m dash finals on Sunday.
Erica Whipple and Aleen Bailey finished 2-3 in the overall preliminary rounds of the women’s 100m dash as Whipple set a personal best mark. Whipple’s time of 11.25 bests her old mark of 11.32. Bailey ran a time of 11.34 to finish third overall, first in her heat.
In the 100m hurdles, Antoinette Wilks qualified for the finals as she ran a 13.76 to place sixth overall in the preliminaries.
In the 110m hurdles, Carolina qualified three for Sunday’s final as Kenneth Ferguson, Corey Taylor and Charles Ryan placed 5-7-8 in the preliminaries. Ferguson and Taylor ran 13.72 in their respective heats as Taylor tied a career best while Charles Ryan ran 13.78.
William Emase qualified for the finals of the men’s 1,500m run as he posted a time of 3:49.07 in the preliminary rounds.
In the shot put competition, Adam Bishop finished fifth with a throw of 53′ 1″. Teammate Jim Mitchell placed 11th with a throw of 49′ 10.5″. Greg Royster and Jared Farabee tied for sixth place in the pole vault as they both vaulted to 16′ 4.75″, a NCAA Regional Qualifying mark.
In the men’s long jump competition, Tony Allmond placed fifth with a mark of 24′ 11″ while Creig Cryer finished sixth with a jump of 24′ 8.5″. On the women’s side, Chelesea Hammond finished eighth with a jump of 19′ 11.75″ while Antoinette Wilks finished 10th, just missing the finals, as she jumped 19′ 10.75″.
After three days of competition, the women are currently sitting in eighth place with 12 points as Florida holds a narrow lead over Arkansas. On the men’s side, the Gamecocks are in seventh place. Arkansas holds a three point lead over Georgia.
Day four of the four-day meet begins Sunday at 2:30 p.m. EDT at the University of Tennessee’s Tom Black Track. Live results can be found at www.utsports.com.