As it turned out, the Lady Vol readout was about 6 1/2 seconds off the school record of 17:22.82. That mark was recorded on April 27, 1989, as the UT quartet of Gina Wilbanks, Patty Wiegand, Valerie Bertrand and Jasmin Jones also garnered runner-up acclaim in Philly. Keeping the Big Orange from enjoying a victory today was Michigan, which won in 17:28.98. Villanova was a distant third at 17:47.01.
Carrying the baton for the Orange and White were freshman Brittany Sheffey (Bellport, N.Y.), sophomore Phoebe Wright (Signal Mountain, Tenn.), junior Rolanda Bell (Laurelton, N.Y.) and junior Sarah Bowman (Warrenton, Va.). Bell and Bowman delivered UT’s best splits of the afternoon, covering the distance in 4:22.9 and 4:15.2, respectively. Bowman’s effort tied for the ninth fastest in meet history.
Earlier in the day, Tennessee rolled to a season-topping reading of 44.28 to place seventh in the 4x100m relay. Handling the stick for Team Orange were freshman Jeneba Tarmoh (San Jose, Calif.), senior Cleo Tyson (Huntsville, Texas), senior LaTonya Loche (Bastrop, La.) and sophomore Lynne Layne (New Rochelle, N.Y.). The mark bettered their previous 2008 best of 44.52, which the quartet recorded at the Vanderbilt Invitational last weekend.
The same foursome joined forces a little more than an hour later to advance Tennessee to Saturday’s 4x200m relay final. Winning heat five of the prelims, Layne, Tyson, Loche and Tarmoh navigated the distance in 1:34.19 to chart the fourth-fastest readout of the afternoon and the No. 9 all-time mark in Lady Vol history.
Closing out the afternoon in Philly for Tennessee was junior Celriece Law (Denver, Colo.), competing in the prelims of the 100m hurdles. The UT speedster not only earned a lane in Saturday’s final, but she posted a season wind-legal best readout of 13.44 en route to third-place honors in heat one.
“It was a very good day, today, for our team,” UT Head Coach J.J. Clark said. “The 4x1 ran a season best, we advanced to the finals in two events, and I was proud of the way the 4x1500m relay competed. The Orange is showing up in good fashion, and we are representing ourselves quite well.
“When you are competitive at a meet like this, you are going to be among the top teams and come out a winner when you put yourself in that position. Sometimes it doesn’t work out. Even though we haven’t come out on top yet this week, our spirits are good and we are looking forward to coming back out here tomorrow to see what we can do in the finals of the 4x8, 4x2 and hurdles.”
Out in California at the UC San Diego Triton Invitational, meanwhile, three Lady Vols were in action on Friday and all of them had productive afternoons. One day after moving to No. 3 on UT’s all-time discus performers list at 182-7 in an official but non-sanctioned (by the NCAA) meet, freshman Annie Alexander (Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago) came back Friday to notch an NCAA eligible toss of 179-3 that placed her sixth overall, first among collegians, and moved her to No. 6 on the NCAA list.
Senior Shanna Dickenson (Cincinnati, Ohio) wound up 15th with an NCAA provisional improvement of 165-5. Classmate Amara McKell (Nashville, Tenn.) recorded a personal best for the second straight day and made the NCAA regional meet for the first time in her career with a 22nd-place toss of 158-11.
Earlier in the day, Dickenson also took part in the hammer throw, finishing seventh with a regional improvement and season-best blast of 192-5 that moved her back to first in the SEC this season.
Saturday, Tennessee will be back in action at both sites. In Philadelphia, UT will compete in the finals of the 4x200m, and 4x1500m relays and the 100m hurdles, while the California contingent will feature freshman Holly Kane (Knoxville, Tenn.) in the javelin and Alexander, Dickenson and McKell in the shot.
|THURSDAY, APRIL 24 AT PENN RELAYS|
|(12) 4x100m Heats (Regional: 45.70) 1:00 p.m.|
|Adv.||Jeneba Tarmoh/Cleo Tyson/LaTonya Loche/Lynne Layne||44.53p|
|(279) Long Jump College (Regional: 19-8.25/6.00m) 4:00 p.m.|
|13t h||Lynne Layne||19-1/5.83w (w: n/a)|
|(58) DMR (Regional: 45.70) 5:15 p.m.|
|2nd||Brittany Sheffey/LaTonya Loche/Phoebe Wright/Sarah Bowman||10:50.51s|
|(74) 5000m Champ. (Regional: 16:52.00) 8:30 p.m.|
|(79)10,000m Champ. (Auto: 33:30.00, Prov.: 35:00.00) 10:05 p.m.|
|3rd||Katie Van Horn||34:52.97+|
|THURSDAY, APRIL 24 AT USATF DISCUS DEVELOPMENT SERIES|
|“B” Discus (Regional: 155-2/47.30m) Noon PT/3 p.m. ET|
|“A” Discus (Regional: 155-2/47.30m) 1 p.m. PT/ 4 p.m. ET|
|FRIDAY, APRIL 25 AT PENN RELAYS|
|(114) 4x100m Finals (Regional: 45.70) 12:55 p.m.|
|7th||Jeneba Tarmoh/Cleo Tyson/LaTonya Loche/Lynne Layne||44.28#|
|(122) 4x1500m Relay Final (Not An NCAA Event) 1:25 p.m.|
|2nd||Brittany Sheffey/Phoebe Wright/Rolanda Bell/Sarah Bowman||17:29.12|
|(124) 4x200m Relay Heats (Not An NCAA Event) 2:05 p.m.|
|Adv.||Lynne Layne/Cleo TysonLaTonya Loche/Jeneba Tarmoh)||1:34.19p/1st, ht. 5 (4th)|
|(133) 100mH Heats (Regional: 13.92) 3:35 p.m.|
|Adv.||Celriece Law||13.44p# (w: -0.9)/3rd/ht. 1 (7th)|
|FRIDAY, APRIL 25 AT UCSD TRITON INV.|
|Hammer (Regional: 177-8/54.15m) 10 a.m. PT/1 p.m. ET|
|Inv. Discus (Regional: 155-2/47.30m) 2 p.m. PT/5 p.m. ET|
|Open Discus (Regional: 155-2/47.30m) 2 p.m. PT/5 p.m. ET|
|SATURDAY, APRIL 26 AT PENN RELAYS|
|(230) 4x200m Relay Final (Not An NCAA Event) 2:25 p.m.|
|Lady Vol Lineup TBD (Tarmoh/Tyson/Loche/Layne)|
|(234) 4x800m Relay (Not An NCAA Event) 2:45 p.m.|
|Lady Vol Lineup TBD (Wright/Bowman/Sheffey/Bell/McDonald)|
|(241) 100mH Finals (Regional: 13.92) 4:05 p.m.|
|SATURDAY, APRIL 26 AT UCSD TRITON INV.|
|Javelin (Regional: 142-6/43.45m) 11:00 a.m. PT/2 p.m. ET|
|Shot Put (Regional: 46-11/14.30m) 3 p.m. PT/6 p.m. ET|
# - NCAA Regional Qualifier, * - NCAA Automatic Qualifier, + - NCAA Provisional Qualifier, ! - Personal Record (Outdoors), dnf - Did Not Finish, dnq - Did Not Qualify, dnr - Did Not Run, dns - Did Not Start, dq - Disqualified, f - Facility Record, fs – False Start, h - Hand Times, nm - No Mark, p - Prelims, s - School Record (Outdoors).