Two Bulldogs Win Titles At SEC Track & Field Championships
Feb. 28, 2014
COLLEGE STATION, TEXAS --- Junior Morgann Leleux (pole vault) and sophomore Maicel Uibo (heptathlon) captured individual titles to highlight the second day of the Southeastern Conference Indoor Championships in the Gilliam Indoor Track Stadium on Friday.
Leleux won her third conference championship in the event (first indoors) after reaching a season-best height of 14 feet, 4 ½ inches. Uibo scored a season-best 5,859 points to complement the 2013 SEC decathlon crown he captured.
A school record also fell for the Lady Bulldogs as senior Megan Malasarte blistered the field in the 800-meter run prelims with a time of 2:03.08. This marked the third meet in a row that Malasarte has established a school record in the event.
The Lady Bulldogs are second in the team race with 33 points behind Arkansas (39) following the first five events of the three-day meet. The Georgia men are in fifth place with 16 points while Arkansas leads with 56 points.
The women's weight throw (senior Elizabeth Tepe, freshman Asianna Covington), the men's triple jump (sophomore Jamario Calhoun) and the women's triple jump (senior Lucie Ondraschkova) will start the action on Saturday at 2 p.m. ET.
ESPN3 will stream the meet live during the following times: Saturday, March 1 (1:50 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.). The broadcast talent includes Dwight Stones (play-by-play), Larry Rawson (analyst) and Lewis Johnson (sideline reporter).
Georgia had five more scorers on Friday, three qualifiers for Saturday finals and have now posted a total of 22 personal bests in the first two days of action.
"It was a productive day because we scored points and points might be hard to get this weekend," said head coach Wayne Norton. "Winning events is always special and we were able to pull out two wins today. Leleux and Uibo came up big for us. And Malasarte was spectacular with a time that stamps her as an NCAA threat. The first two days have been good. We need to do it again on Saturday."
After taking two tries to clear 13-6.25, Leleux had three first-attempt clearances to reach the top height of her 2014 season. Going into the weekend, Leleux's score on Friday would rank third nationally. This marks the third SEC title for the New Iberia, La., native after she finished first at both the 2012 and 2013 SEC outdoor meets.
Leleux's true freshman teammate, Georgia Stefanidi, reached a career-best mark of 13-6.25 on her second attempt to take seventh for two points. This is the sixth-best mark in Lady Bulldog history.
Uibo delivered the second consecutive heptathlon championship for the Bulldogs after Garrett Scantling won last year. Uibo posted season-best performances in all three of his events on Friday to finish with his top score of 2014.
The Polva, Estonia, native won the pole vault after soaring over the bar at 16-4.75 on his third and final try. Uibo started the day by wining his heat and taking second overall in the 60 hurdles with a time of 8.33. In the heptathlon's finale, he ran a 2:44.49 and won his second conference title by 215 points.
Uibo stands at the No. 3 spot nationally going into the NCAA Championships in Albuquerque, N.M., on March 14-15.
Sophomore Chanice Porter hit the 20-foot mark for the third straight time this season in the long jump and finished third. The 2013 SEC indoor champion traveled 20-5.75 on her sixth jump, which equaled her mark the last time Georgia visited College Station at the Texas A&M Invitational several weeks ago. Porter is second on the latest national descending order list.
Freshman Alex Poursanidis complemented Uibo's win in the heptathlon with a sixth-place finish in the weight throw. The Paphos, Cyprus, native launched an effort of 63-9.50 on his fourth throw in a series that featured four fouls.
In the men's long jump, sophomore Jamario Calhoun recovered from fouls on his fourth and fifth attempts to take sixth with a career-best mark of 23-10.25 on his six try. The Athens native and Cedar Shoals High School graduate passed four competitors on his final jump to add another three points to the Bulldogs total.
Georgia also qualified three runners for Saturday's finals. Malasarte shot out of the blocks in the second heat of the 800 and topped the crew in her group by nearly six seconds. Her 2:03.08 is the second-fastest time in the nation this year.
Malasarte races in the 800 finals at 4:10 p.m. on Saturday.
In the mile, junior Carly Hamilton sped to a season-best time of 4:39.04 to take third in the prelims. After recording two times in the 4:40s this season, Hamilton approached her school record time of 4:36.06 as she works to be included in the NCAA field.
Hamilton runs in the mile finals at 2:40 p.m.
The Bulldog men also had a qualifier as junior Charlie Grethen managed to slip into the field for the 800 finals at 4 p.m. on Saturday. Grethen completed his four laps in 1:49.68 to take fifth in the prelims.
Personal Bests Abound: Georgia has also added another flurry of personal bests in addition to the career bests listed above and in Thursday's report. Senior Johnathan Smith clocked a 6.73 to take 10th in the 60 prelims while sophomore Myasia Jacobs tied the No. 7 mark in school history with a 7.45 in the women's race for 15th in the prelims.
Freshman Rashan Brown left the facility with personal bests in both the 200 (23.76) and the 400 (53.97). In the men's 400, junior Drew Branch sprinted to a 46.97, which is 10th on the school's all-time list, to take 10th in the prelims while freshman Derrick White had a 47.37 to be the 16th finisher in the race.
There were also a variety of personal bests in the distances. Freshman Brian Sullivan finished the mile in 4:11.91, which was good for 12th, as sophomore Steven Spevacek shaved less than a second off his 3000 time to finish with a 8:25.22. During the women's 3000, senior Bret McDaniel also cut less than a second off her top time to take 12th with a 9:47.53.
Results and recaps from the SEC Indoor Championships will be found at georgiadogs.com. News and updates from Georgia track and field teams are located on Twitter at @UGA_XCTF.
*collegiate personal-best mark; ^season-best mark
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