May 27, 2014
ATHENS, Ga. --- Georgia’s track and field teams garnered three annual individual Southeastern Conference awards for the outdoor season, according to a league announcement on Tuesday.
The Bulldogs swept the SEC Freshman Field Athlete of the Year honors. Alex Poursanidis was the men’s recipient while Kendell Williams won on the women’s side. Williams was also the SEC indoor Women’s Freshman Field Athlete of the Week and was named the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) National Field Athlete of the Year indoors.
Junior Brandon Lord was also named the SEC Men’s Co-Scholar Athlete of the Year, along with Arkansas’ Nathanael Franks.
Poursanidis, a native of Paphos, Cyprus, captured the SEC hammer throw championship with a mark of 218 feet, 4 inches on his second throw. His effort edged the favored Elias Hakansson from Alabama by 10 inches. This was the Bulldogs’ first men’s hammer throw title since Georgia won six in a row from 1999-2004. Poursanidis is the nation’s second-ranked freshman (top SEC freshman) and he is tied for 11th on the country’s performance list.
Williams, a native of Marietta, cruised to a 350-point victory in the heptathlon with a facility record 5,877 points at the SEC Championships thanks to a collegiate personal-best time in the 200-meter dash (24.32) and the top long jump of her young career (20-5.75). This marked the first heptathlon crown for the Lady Bulldogs since Jessica Stockard won the 2005 title. Williams is the American Junior record holder in the heptathlon after exploding for a facility record 6,018 points to win the Bulldog Heptathlon, which leads the NCAA.
Lord, a native of Chattanooga, Tenn., has compiled a 3.64 GPA in Applied Biotechnology with aspirations of attending medical school. The Presidential Scholar is on the Dean’s List, is a three-time member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll and has been selected to the Athletics Director’s honor roll. Lord is a two-time USTFCCCA All-Academic selection. This year, Lord won Georgia’s first men’s 10,000 SEC title before returning to earn runner-up honors in the 5000. He ranks No. 2 on the school’s all-time 10,000 list (29:10.87).
Georgia travels to Jacksonville, Fla., on Tuesday in preparation for the NCAA East Prelims, which start on Thursday and run through Saturday. The top 12 qualifiers in each event at the East Prelims will join four Bulldogs who have already qualified for the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Ore., on June 11-14: two heptathletes – Williams and junior Quintunya Chapman – and two decathletes – junior Garrett Scantling and sophomore Maicel Uibo.
Results and recaps from the NCAA East Prelims will be located at georgiadogs.com. Updates about all Bulldog track and field news can be found on Twitter at @UGA_XCTF.