Brooke Novak captured the 3000 meter title for the Lady Vols.
Feb. 28, 2004
Sophomore Brooke Novak won the 3000 meters, and freshman Tianna Madison placed second in the long jump, providing major contributions to an impressive showing by the sixth-ranked University of Tennessee women Saturday at the Southeastern Conference Indoor Track & Field Championships.
At the end of a day where Clark's squad scored more points than UT has tallied in its past three SEC indoor meets, Team Orange stands in third place in the team scoring. The Lady Vols collected 28 points to position themselves behind No. 7 Georgia (45) and No. 3 Florida (36) with numerous opportunities for points on the final day. No. 14 South Carolina is fourth with 19, followed by Vanderbilt (14), No. 12 Arkansas (12.5), Auburn and Kentucky (12), No. 1 LSU (9.5), Ole Miss (5), Alabama (2) and Mississippi State (0).
Novak, from Kaukauna, Wis., led a 17-point Big Orange barrage in the 3K, logging a victorious run in a career-topping and NCAA provisional-qualifying 9:27.94. She became UT's first conference running event champ indoors since Dedra Davis won the 55 meters in 1994 and is the school's first indoor 3000 champ since Patty Wiegand claimed back-to-back titles in 1990 and 1991.
After grabbing an early lead, relinquishing it to Kentucky's Caity Phillips and patiently staying on the UK standout's heels, Novak reached down for a speedy finish kick that
Phillips (9:31.07) could not match. Following Novak's lead, redshirt freshman Felicia Guliford (Gallup, N.M.) took fifth in a PR 9:41.23, junior Elizabeth McCalley (Knoxville, Tenn.)
charted a PR 9:44.24 to place seventh and sophomore Katie Flaute (Dayton, Ohio) rounded out the scoring in eighth at 9:50.34, just off her best of 9:50.14.
"It was a good day for us, and it ended well in the 3000 meters with three PRs and nearly a fourth," Clark said. "It was a great win for Brooke and shows how far she has come in a year's time. It is a compliment to her commitment to be the best she can be."
Much earlier in the day, Madison contributed significantly to the Lady Vols' point total with a second-place finish in the long jump. The Elyria, Ohio, product unleashed a career-best leap of 20 feet, eight inches to earn eight points and finish behind the victorious 21-1 1/2 jump of Georgia senior Hyleas Fountain.
The effort by Madison, an improvement over her previous NCAA provisional of 20-5 3/4, ranks as the seventh-best in the nation this season and increases her chances for a trip to the NCAA Championships in Fayetteville, Ark., on March 12-13. The measurement, which came on her very first attempt, also moves Madison to number three on the UT all-time performers list and makes her UT's best long jump finisher at SEC Indoors since Marvena Almond took second in Lexington in 1996.
In the 400-meter prelims, junior Dee Dee Trotter bettered her two-week-old UT record of 52.34 with a 52.12 output that won heat one and was good enough for fourth-fastest among the nine finalists. The new mark moves her to fifth on the national list. Trotter came back later in the day to add the 200-meter dash to the list of events she will run on the final day of action. The Decatur, Ga., native zipped to a 23.27 readout to win heat one and report in with the third-best qualifying mark.
A trio of Lady Vols put their squad in good position for heavy points in the mile on Sunday, as Novak and seniors Lindsay Hyatt (Auburn, Calif.) and Jessica Southers (Ashland, Ky.) moved on to the finals with attention-grabbing jaunts in the qualifying round. Novak and Hyatt, who are both provisionally-qualified as well as ranked among the SEC leaders, easily advanced by finishing one-two in heat one with times of 4:46.80 and 4:47.34, respectively. For Novak, it was her third-straight victory at that distance.
Southers, meanwhile, came up with a three-second personal record in the event, thanks to a heroic kick over the final 150 meters. Her time of 4:50.62 rated seventh-best among the nine qualifiers. Tiffany McWilliams of Mississippi State, whom Novak defeated head-to-head in the mile at the Razorback-Tyson Invitational on Feb. 13, posted the fastest qualifying pace, winning heat two in 4:40.09.
Tennessee prepared itself to score big points in the 800 meters as well, as junior Nicole Cook (Petersburg, Va.), senior Kameisha Bennett (Dayton, Ohio) and freshman Leslie Treherne (Chesapeake, Va.) all moved along to the finals. Cook set the pace in heat one, winning in an automatic time of 2:05.40, her second dip below the auto mark this season and just off her 2:05.19 career best.
Bennett, meanwhile, turned in the best 800 of her UT career, earning herself an automatic trip to the NCAA Championships with a second-place time of 2:05.32 in heat two that was just a tad faster than Cook's qualifier and nearly two seconds better than her previous PR of 2:07.09 from 2001. Rookie Treherne also joined the Sunday party, cranking out a season-best 2:07.34 to finish third in heat one. Redshirt freshman Mindy Sullivan (Lubbock, Texas) just missed the finals, finishing 12th overall at 2:09.44, while junior Antoinette Gorham (Glenarden, Md.) was 17th with a career-best time of 2:12.38.
The Lady Vols are also aligned for major points in the finals of the 60-meter dash, where junior Toyin Olupona (Orillia, Ontario, Canada) and Madison qualified with the best and sixth-fastest times in heat one of the prelims. Olupona, who last weekend set the UT record in the 55 meters, rolled to the second-quickest output in Lady Vol history in the 60 meters on Satuday, a 7.27 count that was just off the 7.24 school mark of Kelli White. Madison, meanwhile, tied her PR of 7.38 to earn a ticket to Sunday's money race.
Sunday's final day of events begins at 10 a.m. and is scheduled to wind up around 5 p.m. In addition to the above mentioned qualifiers, Tennessee will have athletes in action the 5000 meters, pole vault, triple jump and shot put as well as the distance medley and 4x400m relays.
"Tianna came through for us in the long jump, and we have many people competing in the finals, but we can't get complacent. Florida is getting ready to score 30 points in the shot, and LSU always has a great second day. We just need to keep doing what w've been doing, which is execute our plans and compete at our very best."
|EVENT (NCAA DIV. I QUALIFYING MARKS)|
|FRIDAY, FEB. 27|
|Pentathlon (Auto: 4050; Prov: 3700)^ 4:30 p.m.|
|(60mH: 14th/9.24!/860 pts.; HJ: t10th/5-1.75/1.57m!/701 pts.; SP: 8th/36-0.25/10.98m/594 pts.; LJ: 9th/17-7.50/5.37m/663m pts.; 800m: 1st/2:20.44!/818 pts.|
|SATURDAY, FEB. 28|
|Wt. Throw (Auto: 19.50, Prov: 18.50) 10:00 a.m.|
|Long Jump (Auto: 6.40, Prov: 6.20) 11:00 a.m.|
|60m Dash Pre. (Auto: 7.30; Prov: 7.44) 3:10 p.m.|
|Advanced||Toyin Olupona||7.27p!*/1st, ht. 1|
|Advanced||Tianna Madison||7.38p!+/3rd, ht. 1|
|Mile Pre. (Auto: 4:38.50, Prov: 4:48.40)^ 3:50 p.m.|
|Advanced||Brooke Novak||4:46.80p+/1st, ht. 1|
|Advanced||Lindsay Hyatt||4:47.34p+/2nd, ht. 1|
|Advanced||Jessica Southers||4:50.62p!/4th, ht. 2|
|400m Pre. (Auto: 52.90, Prov: 54.50)^ 4:30 p.m.|
|Advanced||Dee Dee Trotter||52.12p!+s/1st, ht. 1|
|800m Pre. (Auto: 2:05.65, Prov: 2:09.00)^ 5:10 p.m.|
|Advanced||Nicole Cook||2:05.40p*/1st, ht. 1|
|Advanced||Kameisha Bennett||2:05.32p!*/2nd, ht. 2|
|Advanced||Leslie Treherne||2:07.34p!+/3rd, ht. 1|
|12th||Mindy Sullivan||2:09.44p/3rd, ht. 3|
|17th||Antoinette Gorham||2:12.38p!/6th, ht. 2|
|200m Pre. (Auto: 23.50, Prov: 24.00)^ 6:00 p.m.|
|Advanced||Dee Dee Trotter||23.27p*/1st, ht. 1|
|3000m Fin. (Auto: 9:16.00, Prov: 9:35.00)^ 6:55 p.m.|
|SUNDAY, FEB. 29|
|Triple Jump (Auto: 13.30; Prov: 12.65) 11:00 a.m.|
|Pole Vault (Auto: 4.20, Prov: 3.95) 11:00 a.m.|
|60m Hurd. Fin. (Auto: 8.15; Prov: 8.43) 1:30 p.m.|
|No Lady Vols Entered|
|60m Dash Fin. (Auto: 7.30; Prov: 7.44) 1:50 p.m.|
|Shot Put (Auto: 16.50, Prov: 15.20) 2:00 p.m.|
|Mile Fin. (Auto: 4:38.50, Prov: 4:48.40)^ 2:05 p.m.|
|400m Fin. (Auto: 52.90, Prov: 54.50)^ 2:25 p.m.|
|Dee Dee Trotter|
|5000m Fin. (Auto: 16:15.00; Prov: 16:45.00)^ 2:45 p.m.|
|800m Fin. (Auto: 2:05.65, Prov: 2:09.00)^ 3:10 p.m.|
|200m Fin. (Auto: 23.50, Prov: 24.00)^ 3:30 p.m.|
|Dee Dee Trotter|
|DMR (Auto: 11:15.00, Prov: 11:36.00)^ 4:10 p.m.|
|4x400mR (Auto: 3:34.50, Prov: 3:40.00)^ 4:40 p.m.|
* - NCAA Automatic Qualifier, + - NCAA Provisional Qualifier, ! - Personal Record (Indoors), ^ - Oversized Track Qualifying Standard, b - Banked Track Qualifying Standard, dnf - Did Not Finish, dnq - Did Not Qualify For Finals, dnr - Did Not Run, f - Facility Record, nm - No Mark Recorded, p - Prelims, s - School Record (Indoors), u - Undersized Track Qualifying Standard