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MADISON DELIVERS OPENING-ROUND KNOCKOUT TO WIN NCAA LONG JUMP CROWN
Tianna Madison

Tianna Madison

June 10, 2005

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- As has become her custom this season, long jumper Tianna Madison delivered a first-round knockout. The University of Tennessee sophomore and would-be boxer unleashed a first-round punch of 21 feet, 10 1/4 inches to finish off her opponents and once again walk away with the title of national champ late Thursday night at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships.

Madison, who also won the NCAA Indoor crown back in March, completed an undefeated outdoor campaign with six wins and reigned as the victor for the 10th time in 11 competitions in 2005. The native of Elyria, Ohio, who attributes her focus, footwork and aggressive approach to jumping to time spent taking boxing lessons, also swept the Southeastern Conference Indoor and Outdoor Championships this season and triumphed at the NCAA Mideast Regional two weekends ago despite suffering from strep throat. She will continue her season in late June and attempt to make the U.S. team for the IAAF World Championships, as she travels to Carson, Calif., to compete in the USATF Outdoor Championships.

"I haven't really thought about what I've done (tonight and this season), because I'm not done yet," Madison said. "When I get a break, maybe I'll sit down and think about it. I still have USAs and World Championships ahead of me, so I'll have to wait until those are behind me to put it all in perspective."

The NCAA leader the entire outdoor season, Madison made the finals with a single jump of 22 feet, 1/4 inch on Wednesday night. She came up short of that mark tonight, and did not approach her NCAA season-best mark of 22-8 1/2, but that wasn't necessary to accomplish her goal on a cool night at Hornet Stadium. Her opening mark was good enough to hold off runner-up Marshevet Hooker of Texas, who stretched the tape to 21-8 on her fourth jaunt down the runway to add a little drama to the occasion.

 

 

"There's something about the intensity of the first jump that gets me going every time," Madison said. "I would have liked to have jumped farther, but then, again, today was about just competing. I did that, so I am satisfied."

Madison joins 1994 outdoor champ Dedra Davis as the only Lady Vols to win NCAA crowns in the long jump. In becoming the first UT woman to make a clean sweep of the NCAA hardware, Madison also boosted Tennessee into first place for a half-hour before Colorado collected 14 points in the 10,000 meters to move in front for the lead after two days.

"Tianna has been consistent all season long, and her win tonight is the product of that consistency," UT Head Coach J.J. Clark said. "She has worked hard, and she is willing to trust what Caryl (Gilbert Smith) and Charlie (Simpkins) ask her to do. I am very proud of her, but I also know that she is very talented, and there is still a lot out there for her to accomplish."

After earning a trip to the 100m dash final with her efforts in two qualifying rounds on Wednesday, freshman Cleo Tyson (Huntsville, Texas) came back on Thursday and duplicated that feat in a second event. The rookie speed merchant punched her ticket for Saturday's 200-meter dash final with a 23.06 count that was good for third in heat two and stood as the fifth-best mark of the 18 competitors in the semifinals. She did so after registering a 23.35 reading to take second in heat two of the qualifying round earlier in the day.

"Cleo has stepped up, and she's doing a lot of quality running," Clark said. "We look forward to her helping us tomorrow in the 4x1 and 100m. She is really staying focused. There is still a lot of running for her to do, but she has done a great job to this point."

The 4x400m relay tandem of freshman LaTonya Loche (Bastrop, La.), junior Patricia Hall (St. Ann, Jamaica), freshman Courtney Champion (Lawrenceville, Ga.) and senior Antoinette Gorham (Glenarden, Md.) moved itself into position to earn points on Saturday as well, as the unit rolled to a season best of 3:30.23 to place second in heat three and fourth best of the eight qualifying squads. The Lady Vol foursome topped its victorious NCAA Mideast Regional clocking of 3:31.27 and charted the number eight readout in program history.

Gorham, meanwhile, saw her individual season come to a close in the 800 meters a couple of hours before, as she wound up sixth in heat one of the semifinals in 2:06.06. That mark, the second-best of her career, was good enough for 12th overall out of an original field of 27. As one of the top eight finishers from the United States, the Lady Vol senior also collected the first individual All-America citation of her career to go along with four relay awards (3-4x400mR, 1-DMR).

"We got the 4x4 through (to the final), and that helps us and our potential point total," Clark said. "I am a little disappointed in Antoinette not advancing. Her stategy at this meet wasn't the best, which is unsual for her. We look forward to tomorrow's finals and the rest of the meet."

In the first women's event contested on Thursday, junior Ariel Brooks (Miami, Fla.) took three attempts in the hammer throw prelims but her mark of 185-1/56.43m left her short of qualifying for Saturday's final. Brooks needed a top-12 outcome to advance but wound up 18th out of 27 competitors after entering the meet ranked 27th.

Junior shot putter April Thomas (Albany, Ga.) also saw a very successful first year at Rocky Top come to an end, as her heave of 48-4.75/14.75m in the qualifying round was good enough for only 24th position and did not provide her entrance into Saturday's final.

Tennessee will be represented in three events on Friday, including two finals. The 4x100m relay team will run for points at 6:40 p.m. PT (9:40 p.m. ET), with Madison, Champion, Olupona and Tyson onboard, and the latter two of that quartet will hit the track again at 8:30 p.m. PT (11:30 p.m. ET) in the 100-meter dash final. UT will also have Hall and Loche in action in the semifinals of the 400 meters at 7:40 p.m. PT (10:40 p.m. ET).

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 8 AT THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS
EVENT (NCAA DIV. I QUALIFYING MARKS)
4x100m Relay Pre. (Regional: 45.80) 4:00 p.m. PT
Adv. Tianna Madison/Courtney Champion/Toyin Olupona/Cleo Tyson 43.75p/1st, ht. 2
800m Pre. (Regional: 2:09.80) 4:35 p.m. PT
Adv. Antoinette Gorham 2:06.26p/5th, ht. 1
100m Pre. (Regional: 11.75) 5:55 p.m. PT
Adv. Cleo Tyson 11.33p/1st, ht. 1(w:-0.3)
Adv. Toyin Olupona 11.44p/2nd, ht. 1(w:-0.3)
400m Pre. (Regional: 54.61) 6:25 p.m. PT
Adv. Patricia Hall 53.48p/2nd, ht. 5
Adv. LaTonya Loche 53.13p/3rd, ht. 3
Long Jump Qual. (Regional: 19-6.25/5.95m) 7:15 p.m. PT
Adv. Tianna Madison 22-0.25/6.71mp (w: 2.1)/1st, ht 2
100m Semis (Regional: 11.75) 7:25 p.m. PT
Adv. Cleo Tyson 11.42p/1st, ht. 1(w: -0.4)
Adv. Toyin Olupona 11.42p/2nd, ht. 1(w: -0.4)
5000m Pre. (Regional: 16:52.00)) 9:40 p.m. PT
Adv. Felicia Guliford 16:26.48/7th, ht. 2
THURSDAY, JUNE 9 AT THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS
EVENT (NCAA DIV. I QUALIFYING MARKS)
Hammer Throw Qual. (Regional: 177-8/54.15m) 1:00 p.m. PT
18th Ariel Brooks 185-1/56.43mp/5th, Flt. 1
200m Pre. (Regional: 23.96) 5:30 p.m. PT
Adv. Cleo Tyson 23.35p/2nd, ht. 2 (w: 0.4)
800m Semis. (Regional: 2:09.80) 6:45 p.m. PT
12th Antoinette Gorham 2:06.06p/6th, ht. 1
200m Semis. (Regional: 23.96) 7:20 p.m. PT
Adv. Cleo Tyson 23.06p/3rd, ht. 2 (w: 0.2)
Shot Put Qual. (Regional: 46-11/14.30m) 8:30 p.m. PT
24th April Thomas 48-4.75/14.75m/
4x400mR Pre. (Regional: 3:42.00) 9:00 p.m. PT
Adv. LaTonya Loche/Patricia Hall/Courtney Champion/Antoinette Gorham 3:30.23p/2nd, ht. 3
Long Jump Fin. (Regional: 19-6.25/5.95m) 9:00 p.m. PT
1st (10 pts.) Tianna Madison 21-10.25/6.66m (w: 1.1)
FRIDAY, JUNE 10 AT THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS
EVENT (NCAA DIV. I QUALIFYING MARKS)
4x100m Relay Fin. (Regional: 45.80) 6:40 p.m. PT
Tianna Madison/Courtney Champion/Toyin Olupona/Cleo Tyson
400m Semis. (Regional: 54.61) 7:40 p.m. PT
Patricia Hall
LaTonya Loche
100m Fin. (Regional: 11.75) 8:30 p.m. PT
Cleo Tyson
Toyin Olupona
SATURDAY, JUNE 11 AT THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS
EVENT (NCAA DIV. I QUALIFYING MARKS)
400m Fin. (Regional: 54.61) 6:10 p.m. PT
Patricia Hall?
LaTonya Loche?
200m Fin. Regional: 23.96) 7:20 p.m. PT
Cleo Tyson
5000m Fin. (Regional: 16:52.00)) 8:10 p.m. PT
Felicia Guliford
4x400mR Fin. (Regional: 3:42.00) 8:45 p.m. PT
LaTonya Loche/Patricia Hall/Courtney Champion/Antoinette Gorham
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