April 17, 2013
- With the 119th running of the legendary Penn Relays just over a week away, the Tennessee track & field team will have a limited number of competitors in action this week, as the Big Orange will send contingents to the Vanderbilt Invitational and out west for a series of four throwing meets in three days in the Los Angeles, Cali., area.
- The Vol and Lady Vol throwers will get the action started on Thursday morning at the Cal State L.A. Twilight Open. Tennessee will have one competitor in the women's hammer throw and three on the men's side of the event, which opens the meet at noon ET.
- The group of 10 will then compete at the Mt. SAC Relays, the Long Beach State Invitational and the SOKA Peace Invitational to conclude the stretch of four meets over a three-day span on the west coast.
- Twenty five Vols and Lady Vols will make the ride west on I-40 to take part in the Vanderbilt Invitational in Nashville from April 19-20. The event opens on Friday, with multiple field events starting at 4 p.m. CT. Saturday's slate of action gets underway at 11 a.m. ET with the men's and women's hammer throw.
FOLLOW THE ACTION
- The Mt. SAC Relays will be broadcast live via Flotrack at Flotrack.org. The live stream will be available only to Flotrack Pro members.
- Live results can be found at the Track & Field Meet Central page on UTSports.com. To note, some meets do not feature live results.
- Also be sure to follow the Tennessee track & field team on twitter at @Vol_Track for in-meet updates.
PREPPING FOR PENN
- In an effort to conserve energy for the 119th Penn Relays, Tennessee will only be sending 35 athletes into competition this weekend.
- There will be no men's sprinters and very few men's and women's distance runners traveling this week. Two men's sprinters - Reggie Juin and Michael Williams - will both be participating in Tennessee football's DISH Orange & White Game on Saturday at 2 p.m. at Neyland Stadium.
- Last season at the Penn Relays, the Lady Vols claimed their 20th baton-event title at the Penn Relays with an upset victory in the sprint medley Championship of America race. The quartet crossed the line in 3:43.79 and was later named the top SMR of the 2012 season.
- The Lady Vols carded a second-place finish in the distance medley Championship of America, while the Vols were the runner-ups in the SMR.
- Then-sophomore Linda Hadfield finished second in the college pole vault division with a mark of 13-1.5 (4.00m).
THE OUTDOOR SLATE
- Following the 119th running of the Penn Relays, the Big Orange will head to Columbia, Mo., for the annual SEC Outdoor Track & Field Championships at new-league member Missouri.
- The meet, which will take place at Audrey J. Walton Stadium, will run from Thursday, May 9 to Sunday, May 12.
- The next scheduled event will take the Vol and Lady Vol qualifiers to the NCAA East Preliminaries in Greensboro, N.C., from May 23-25. Qualifiers will then participate in the 2013 NCAA Outdoor Championships at legendary Hayward Field on the campus of the University of Oregon in Eugene, Ore.
THE WATCH LIST
- Already with 76 personal bests this season, the Vols and Lady Vols are well represented among the nation's elite. Currently, eight Vol athletes and one relay are ranked in the nation's top 50, while eight Lady Vols grace the same list.
- After a big weekend at Sea Ray Relays, Matthew Hoty leads the Vols on the nation's top performers. Hoty currently ranks third in the nation, tied for first in the East and leads the SEC with a 62-8.75 (19.12m) lifetime best mark in the shot put.
- Pole vaulter Jake Blankenship ranks fourth in the country with a mark of 18-4.75 (5.61m). He's second among rookies in the nation and that mark is third-best in UT's record book.
- Tavis Bailey also ranks in the top 10 in the country, with a mark of 195-3 (59.51m) in the discus.
- Leading the Lady Vols is senior Nijgia Snapp, who posted the ninth-best 800m mark (2:05) in the country at Sea Ray Relays last week.
- Freshman sprinter Felicia Brown also had a good weekend on the track and currently sits 17th in the nation in the 400m (53.01). She also posted a wind-aided mark of 23.04 in the 200m dash, which ranks fourth in the SEC.
- In the field, freshman Cassie Wertman leads the way with a 53-foot, 2.25-inch mark in the women's shot put, which stands 23rd in the nation and sixth in the league.
- The Lady Vols' 4x800m relay of Brittney Jackson, Kianna Ruff, Kelsey Kane and Nijgia Snapp broke both the Florida Relays and Percy Beard Track records two weeks ago with a readout of 8:28.81.
- The mark bested a record held by Tennessee's Rolanda Bell, Sarah Bowman, Phoebe Wright and Chanelle Price. The previous mark was 8:28.99.
- For the event, it's the fastest time in the world in 2013. Florida's mark of 8:30.15 currently ranks second in the world for 2013. It is the seventh-fastest time ever recorded in the event for the UT women.
THE CLARK EFFECT
- The Lady Vols have won two NCAA Indoor team titles in 2005 and 2009, both coming under J.J. Clark, while the Vols claimed the 2002 indoor team title.
- The Lady Vols have won four NCAA Indoor titles in the distance medley relay, coming in 2004, 2008, 2009 and 2010, all under Clark. The 2009 unit set world, American and NCAA meet records at 10:50.98.
- The UT women have seven top-10 NCAA Indoor finishes in Clark's previous 10 seasons, including titles in 2005 and 2009, a runner-up effort in 2010 and a third-place result in 2007.
- Clark, a three-time SEC Indoor Women's Coach of the Year, also piloted the Lady Vols to SEC Indoor titles in 2005, 2007 and 2009.
- In 10 full seasons leading the Lady Vols and three with the Vols, Clark's athletes have won 60 SEC titles (Women 31 in/27 Out; Men: 1 in/1 Out).
- Tennessee has had 295 combined indoor and outdoor All-Americans in program history. Under Clark, the Lady Vols and Vols have combined for 202 All-America certificates.