May 17, 2009
Gainesville, Fla. - The Tennessee men's track and field team scored in five events Sunday en route to an eighth-place finish at the SEC Championships held at Pearcy Beard Track on the campus of the University of Florida. Tennessee scored 53 points during the four-day meet, while conference champion Arkansas finished with 141 points.
Tennessee crowned one individual champion during the weekend as Joe Berry won his third consecutive pole vault crown on Saturday.
"We didn't have the type of meet that we wanted to," Tennessee head coach Bill Webb said. "It started with not qualifying enough guys early in the weekend. This is one of the best meets there is, and you have to be ready to compete. With the exception of a few events like the 800m with our two freshmen scoring, I don't think we performed to our abilities. We'll regroup and get ready for the NCAA regional in two weeks."
The highlight of the Vols' night was a nine-point effort in the 800m from Joseph Franklin and Emerson Peacock. Franklin clocked a lifetime-best time of 1:48.39 to finish second, while Peacock placed eighth at 1:49.76. Evander Wells also got on the scoreboard for the Vols, clocking a time of 21.15 in the 200m to finish seventh and earn two points. The UT 4x400m relay finished eighth in 3:10.66 to grab a single point.
In the only two field event finals of the day, Nick Panezich posted a throw of 51.13m (167-9) to finish sixth in the discus, while Akeem Hardnett leaped 15.47m (50-9.25) to finish sixth in the triple jump.
The 400m hurdles saw John Hewitt trim his lifetime-best by four-tenths of a second at 51.58 but still finish just outside of the points in ninth place.
In the 1,500m, Axel Mostrag clocked a season-best time of 3:50.82 but also just missed out on scoring for the team with a 10th-place finish. Michael Spooner was the top finisher among Vols in the 5,000m in 21st place at 14:29.56.
The Vols also did not manage points in the 4x100m relay, finishing 10th with a time of 39.92, which improved the group's regional qualifier but wasn't enough to land them in the points. In the 110m hurdles, Charlton Rolle false started and was disqualified.
Tennessee has 15 athletes and two relay units responsible for a total of 22 NCAA regional qualifying marks. Those athletes will be in competition May 29-30 in Louisville, Ky., at the NCAA Mideast Regional with berths at the NCAA Championships on the line.
|200 Meter Dash|
|800 Meter Run|
|1500 Meter Run|
|5,000 Meter Run|
|110 Meter Hurdles|
|1.||Richardson, Jason||South Carolina||13.29R|
|400 Meter Hurdles|
|1.||Dutch, Johnny||South Carolina||48.58F|
|4x100 Meter Relay|
|4x400 Meter Relay|
|1.||Odetunde, Wale||Mississippi||15.76mR -0.7 51-08.50|
|6.||Hardnett, Akeem||Tennessee||15.47mR -1.3 50-09.25|
|1.||Scott, Rashaud||Kentucky||59.23mR 194-04|
|6.||Panezich, Nick||Tennessee||51.13m 167-09|
|Men - Team Rankings - 21 Events Scored|
|1) Arkansas||141||2) Florida||129|
|3) LSU||98.50||4) South Carolina||88|
|5) Auburn||72||5) Georgia||72|
|7) Kentucky||55||8) Tennessee||53|
|9) Miss. State||44.50||10) Alabama||33.50|