TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - Mississippi State closed out the final day of the 2007 Southeastern Conference Track and Field Championships with Golden Coachman claiming third place in the men's 800-meter run and Jen McPherson finishing fourth in the 1500-meter run.
Coachman clocked the second-fastest time in school history with a mark of one minute, 47.40 seconds. His time was just 22 seconds off the school record of 1:47.62 set by Kraig Cesar in 1988. Coachman, a Birmingham, Ala.-native by way of Wallace State (Ala.) CC, improved his NCAA Regional qualifying mark with his SEC meet time. He also scored for the State men in the 1500-meter run with an eight-place finish in the four-lap event. Coachman crossed the line at 3:50.93 to gain a point in the overall team standings.
"Golden ran an incredible race today," said MSU head coach Al Schmidt. "I think after this weekend, he will have the fourth or fifth-best time in the country heading into the NCAA Regionals."
MState's 4x400-meter relay team closed out the four-day event with a fourth-place finish. The foursome of Bruce Davis, Nathan Daniels, Chris Woods and Ezra Jones clocked a time of 3:05.91 - the fastest time run by an MSU relay team this season.
"The injury to Arthir (Davis) really hurt us in the 4x400, but they ran a good time tonight under the circumstances," added Schmidt.
Senior Jen McPherson turned in a personal record in the women's 1500-meter run with a time of 4:20.87 and a fourth-place finish overall in the event. She will continue her season at the NCAA Regional in late May, having qualified in both the 800-meter and 1500-meter runs.
Junior transfer Delandus O'Neal finished strong in the men's 400-meter hurdle finals with a time of 51.36 and a sixth-place finish. His mark bettered his NCAA postseason mark in the event. He will be joined by teammate Kyle Roberts, who qualified for the Mideast Regional with his preliminary time of 51.45.
The 2007 edition of the SEC Track and Field Championships were won by Tennessee on the men's side, who finished with 129.5 points and the Lady Tigers of LSU claiming the league title with 139.5 points. State's men's and women's squads finished 11th in the team standings.
MSU has 12 student athletes and two relay teams that will be competing in the 2007 NCAA Mideast Regional on May 25-26 in Columbia, Mo. for a chance to qualify for the NCAA Championships in early June in Sacramento, Ca.
STARKVILLE, Miss. - After finishing the season with a 34-25 record, Mississippi State received its sixth selection to the NCAA Regional, heading to Tucson, Arizona that will be hosted by tournament top seed Arizona.
The Bulldogs will face Pacific in the opening game of the double-elimination regional, at 6 p.m. (CT) on Friday, May 18. Arizona will face either Howard or North Carolina A&T in the nightcap.
The field of 64 announced includes seven teams from the Southeastern Conference, four of which will host one of 16 four-team regionals. Joining MSU in the NCAA Tournament is Alabama, Florida Georgia, LSU, South Carolina and Tennessee.