March 26, 2005
GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Tennessee's late-night, third-place finish in the 4x1500-meter relay on Friday night turned out to be the Lady Vols' final performance at the 62nd-annual Coca-Cola Florida Relays. The last day of the meet was cancelled Saturday, as thunderstorms repeatedly fired up over and around Percy Beard Track.
The morning session was originally postponed until 1 p.m., with all high school field events being cancelled. At 12:50 p.m. Saturday, another strong cell of thunderstorms moved through the Gainesville area and proved to be the last straw for meet organizers, as strong storms with lightning were expected for much of the afternoon.
Friday's schedule was also affected by weather, with many of the collegiate events being cancelled. The last time a full day of events was cancelled at the Coca-Cola Florida Relays was 1996, when much of Percy Beard Track was under water.
Tennessee wrapped up its abbreviated, yet successful, appearance at the meet with a third-place effort in the 4x1500-meter relay late Friday night. The Lady Vol combination of junior Felicia Guliford (Gallup, N.M.), senior Elizabeth McCalley (Knoxville, Tenn.), junior Brooke Novak (Kaukauna, Wis.) and sophomore Mindy Sullivan (Lubbock, Texas) moved the baton around the oval in 18:19.18, charting the third-best clocking in school history.
Michigan won in 17:58.06, followed by a J.J. Clark-coached quartet, called Knoxville Elite, in 18:03.28. Running with that group were Mary Jayne Harrelson, Sharon Dickie Thompson, Hazel
Clark and Lindsay Hyatt. The first four finishing teams all bested the 18:34.23 track and meet records established by Georgetown in 2002.
For results from the Florida Relays, please click on the Lady Vol Web site's link to the meet at www.utladyvols.com.
Tennessee will now gear up for its first home meet of the 2005 outdoor campaign. The Lady Vols will join the UT men in hosting the Gatorade Classic on April 8-9. The scored meet will pit Southeastern Conference schools against universities from the Big Ten Conference.
LADY VOL DAY-BY-DAY RESULTS
Friday: 4x200mR: 1st, Champion/Madison/Tyson/Olupona (1:31.83sf); Sprint Medley Relay: 3rd, Champion/Tyson/Hall/Loche (3:46.97), Pole Vault: 5th, Jessica Reust (12-5.50/3.80m#); 12th, Jessica Andrews and Kendra Rhyne (11-5.75/3.50m). 4x1500mR: 3rd, Guliford/McCalley/Novak/Sullivan (18:19.18).
Thursday: Hammer Throw: 7th, Ariel Brooks (180-2/54.91ms#); 15th, Shanna Dickenson (155-10/47.51m!); NM, April Thomas. 5000m: 4th, Katie Flaute (17:17.17); 7th, Carly Matthews (17:34.72); 13th, Megan Cauble (18:01.74).