Sophomore Takes Two Titles at NCAA Regional

Indianapolis, Ind.--Sophomore Edis Elkasevic took the shot put and discus titles at the NCAA Mideast Regional Track and Field meet, securing spots in those events for next month's NCAA Championships.

Elkasevic, the nation's top-ranked competitor in the shot put, won the event over his rival, Jeff Chakouian of Kentucky, with a toss of 66 feet, 11 1/2 inches on the final throw.

He also won the discus with a throw of 188 feet, five inches.

"The main goal was to earn a spot at nationals," Elkasevic said. "The competition was strong with a lot of good throwers here. It was windy and the discus got wet from the rain so it was hard to keep it from slipping."

Auburn's Cory Martin, who attended Bloomington High School, competed in front of a hometown crowd and notched a two-foot and a half personal best toss in the shot put to place fourth and unexpectedly earn the automatic spot at nationals. The top five competitors in each event move on the NCAA meet in Sacramento, Calif.

Auburn leads the men's team competition after day one with 25 points with Wisconsin (15) and Kentucky (13.5) in second and third place.

. Also on the opening day of the regional qualifying, one of AU's top competitors, senior Fana Ashby, won her 100 meters heat and senior Daniele Browning also advanced to the next round in that event.

Markita James and Josanne Lucas qualified for the finals in the 400 hurdles with Lucas winning her heat.

The women's 4x100 team of Tamara Thomas, Jovanee Jarrett, Browning and Ashby, who coach Ralph Spry predicted could run well in the regional, recorded their fastest time of the season with a 44.47 to advance to the finals.

Damion Barry won his heat in the 400 meters with a 46.14, Sherridan Kirk (1:50.40), one of the favorites in his event, won his heat to advance in the 800 and Shamar Sands (14.01) qualified in the 110 hurdles. Reuben McCoy ran a personal record of 50.67 to qualify for the 400 hurdles.

Athletes who did not qualify in their events include Ronda Gullatte in the hammer, Katie Curtis in the pole vault, Ty Akins in the 110 hurdles and Kareen Gayle (in the women's 800 meters.

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