Cheruiyot A Double-Winner at SEC Meet

Sophomore Ben Cheruiyot led the Tigers at the SEC Track and Field Championships.

Athens, Ga.--The Auburn men finished fifth and the women were sixth at the SEC Track and Field Championships that wrapped up Sunday evening at the Spec Towns Track at the University of Georgia.

Sophomore Ben Cheruiyot defended his second title on Sunday as he finished first in the 5,000 meters with a time of 13:59.25. Earlier in the meet he also successfully defended his 2010 championship in the 10,000 meters.

"The race was tough for me compared to last year," Cheruiyot said. "This year I thought the field was stronger than last year. I knew if I didn't win this after winning the 10k, it wouldn't feel good. I just wanted to come and prove that I was ready to run it."

Arkansas won the men's title with 156.5 points. Florida was second with 139 followed by Georgia with 98, LSU with 88 and Auburn with 69. Ole Miss is sixth with 68 followed by Kentucky with 54, Tennessee with 49, Mississippi State 41, Alabama 38 and South Carolina 22.5.

LSU won the women's meet with 146 points and was followed by Florida (116), Arkansas (107), Georgia (94), Tennessee (92), Auburn (66), South Carolina (46), Kentucky (42), Ole Miss (38), Mississippi State (34), Alabama (31) and Vanderbilt (7).

On Sunday senior Joanna Atkins led the Tigers by winning the 400 meters with a time of 51.83. Atkins was also on the second place 4x400 relay team that ran a season-best time of 3:32.93. Cache Armbrister, CeCe Williams and Kai Selvon posted a season-best time of 3:32.93.

"We had a very competitive weekend, and obviously we would have liked to finish a little higher," Auburn coach Ralph Spry said. "With the way we competed, I think we are going in the right direction with this young team. We just have to keep moving forward, get everyone healthy and line them up where we need them.

"I'm proud of the five champions we had," Spry said. "All in all, I feel pretty good about what we did this weekend. It's always a battle out there, and there are never any easy points so I feel pretty good about what we did."

The women's 4x100 team of V'Alonee Robinson, Atkins, Selvon and junior Nivea Smith took third place in 44.34 on Sunday. Smith took a third place in 200 meters with a time of 22.44 and Selvon was sixth in 23.32. In the 100, Smith was fifth in 11.27.

Senior Holly Knight finished fourth in the 5,000 meters in 16:35.02 on Sunday. Earlier in the meet she took fourth in the 10,000.

For the men on Sunday shot put winner Stephen Saenz added eight more points by throwing the discus 183 feet, five inches, which was second place.

Freshman D.J. Smith placed third in his first SEC Championship high jump with a mark of 2.18 meters (7-1.75).

Niklas Buhner was fifth in the 1,500 meters with a time of 3:51.07 to earn four points.

Freshman Keenan Brock was sixth in 10.19 and sophomore Harry Adams (10.20) finished seventh in the 100 meters final won by Florida's Terrell Wilks in 10.11.

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