Feb. 3, 2009
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- University of Tennessee senior Sarah Bowman has been named Southeastern Conference Indoor Track & Field Female Runner of the Week for the third consecutive week, the league announced on Tuesday. Bowman also earned Lady Vol Athlete of the Week accolades for the second time this season.
Bowman, who also claimed conference honors on Jan. 20 and Jan. 27, became only the second SEC female to be selected three times in a row, duplicating the 2006 three-peat of South Carolina's Shalonda Solomon.
Chanelle Price, meanwhile, was named the SEC Freshman of the Week for the first time in her career. The rookie from Easton, Pa., won the 500m in a time of 1:13.25 and ran on the victorious and school-record-setting 4x800m relay along with Bowman last weekend at the Penn State National Invitational. That unit toppled a 19-year-old school record and also broke meet and facility records at the Horace Ashenfelter III Indoor Track.
Bowman, a native of Warrenton, Va., earned her most recent kudos by qualifying for the NCAA Indoor Championships in her third event this season at Penn State last weekend. Her victorious career-best time of 2:04.58 in the 800 meters eclipsed her previous PR by two seconds and punched her ticket for the national meet in College Station, Texas, on March 13-14.
Additionally, Bowman's mark broke the PSU meet record as well as the facility standard. That 2:04.58 readout ranks first in the NCAA and SEC this season and stands first among all American female runners in that event, professional, collegiate or otherwise.
Bowman's work wasn't finished with the individual accomplishment. She also anchored Tennessee's 4x800m relay to a victorious, school-record time of 8:34.32. That mark ranks among the best ever recorded in the U.S. by women and, as mentioned earlier, also toppled meet and facility records at PSU.
In addition to being automatically qualified for the NCAA meet in the 800m, Bowman previously had earned auto marks in the mile (4:35.35) and 3000m (9:11.31) with PRs in those events as well. She remains undefeated in that trio of individual events this season as well as in the 4x8 and distance medley relays.
During her career, Bowman has been named SEC Track & Field Female Runner of the Week a total of five times. In addition to this year's trio of recognitions, she earned the honor twice in 2008, grabbing the award during the indoor campaign on Feb. 5 and outdoors on April 22.
On Friday night, Bowman is expected to carry the baton on UT's DMR, as the second-ranked Lady Vols compete at the New Balance Collegiate Invitational in New York City. That unit, which won a national championship a year ago with her on board, will be trying to earn its way to College Station for the NCAA meet.