Freshman shot putter Ashinia Miller, who is one of three Bulldogs to reach 60 feet this season, has improved at least two feet in each of his last three meets.
Feb. 20, 2013
Georgia's track and field teams make the trip to Fayetteville, Ark., this week to compete versus the nation’s top talent at the SEC Indoor Championships. UGA combined for three individual champions last year (all 2012 seniors) as the Bulldog men scored the most points in program history at the meet (85.5 pts.).
Below are five intriguing things related to the Bulldogs to keep and eye on this weekend . . .
1. Who Is Bound For Gold? As mentioned above, Georgia had three SEC individual indoor champions in 2012 and all three have completed their eligibility. True freshman Chanice Porter is the top-ranked competitor in the long jump as UGA also has Nick Vena (men’s shot put), Hilenn James (women’s shot put), Lucie Ondraschkova (pentathlon) and Maicel Uibo (heptathlon) all ranked second in the league standings. Georgia has had at least one SEC indoor champion every year since 1998.
2. Youth Movement In eight separate events, Georgia’s leader in SEC individual event standings is a sophomore or younger. The Lady Bulldogs’ recruiting class was ranked No. 4 nationally by Track & Field News and is proving why. Freshman heptathlete Maicel Uibo (2nd in the heptathlon, 5th in the high jump) is also representing for the underclassmen on the men’s side.
3. Re-emergence Of Women’s Sprints The Georgia women suddenly have firepower in the women’s sprints. The Lady Bulldogs have set the school’s fastest and second-fastest times in the 400-meter dash and the 200m, respectively, and tied the fourth-fastest mark in the 60m already this season. According to the regular season standings, they are positioned to score in the top four in two of those events. Georgia’s last sprints champion for the women was in 1999 (Debbie Ferguson, 60m).
4. The 60-Foot Club With shot putters ranked 11th, 21st and 25th nationally, UGA is in hot pursuit of advancing a trio of Bulldogs to the NCAA Championships. Sophomore Nick Vena, junior Caleb Whitener and freshman Ashinia Miller, who are sitting second, third and fifth in the SEC, have all reached 60 feet this season. Vena has been the leader with a pair of wins and a top effort of 62 feet, 10 inches, which is fourth on Georgia’s all-time list. Vena transferred from Virginia last year after capturing the ACC shot and discus titles outdoors.
5. 26 Events In Two Days One of Georgia’s strengths going into the SEC Indoor Championships are its three heptathletes and one pentathlete. Freshman Maicel Uibo (No. 2 in the SEC), sophomore Garrett Scantling (No. 3) and freshman Devon Williams (No. 4) will each compete in seven events through Friday and Saturday and try to pick up another trio of personal bests in Fayetteville. The crew all posted PRs at the Razorback Invite in late January. Senior Lucie Ondraschkova (No. 2) was the 2011 SEC runner-up before suffering a season-ending injury in the 2012 opener. All five of her events arrive on Friday.