Cleo Tyson, Nia Ali win events

LEXINGTON , Ky. - Junior Cleo Tyson and freshman Nia Ali won their events Saturday, and sophomores Celriece Law and Sarah Bowman produced new provisional NCAA qualifying marks for the eighth-ranked University of Tennessee women's track & field team on the second and final day of the Rod McCravy Memorial at Nutter Fieldhouse.

In the 60-meter dash, Tyson (Huntsville, Texas ) zipped to a meet-record time of 7.33 seconds to capture victory in a season-best clocking and improve her NCAA provisional status from a 7.40 count last weekend.

Her effort toppled the previous Rod McCravy mark of 7.37, registered by Georgia Tech's Andria King in 1999. Freshman Lynne Layne (New Rochelle, N.Y.) covered the distance in 7.59 to grab fifth, while sophomore Pavi'Elle "Tiki" James (Miami, Fla.) carded a career-best 7.75 to finish 12th. Junior Courtney Champion (Lawrenceville, Ga.), who was the fastest in the prelims at 7.36, did not run in the final.

Ali also scored a first-place finish, snaring the title in the 60-meter hurdles in 8.37. Lady Vol sophomore Celriece Law (Denver, Colo.) was second, producing an NCAA provisional qualifier of 8.41 in the process. James gave UT its third finisher in the top four, taking fourth in 8.59, while freshman Leigh Ann Burton ( Atlanta , Ga. ) was 13th in 9.05 in her first meet as a Lady Vol.

Law also charted a fifth-place finish in the long jump, earlier in the day, landing a career-topping leap of 18 feet, 9 3/4 inches. Junior LaTonya Loche (Bastrop, La.), meanwhile, logged in at 54.84 to claim ninth in the 400 meters, and Champion returned later to grab sixth in the 200 meters in 24.10, as Ali took eighth in 24.35.

In the 800 meters, Bowman earned a provisional marker in her second event in as many weeks. After making the list in the mile run last Saturday, the Warrenton, Va., product made the cut in the 800m this week with a career-best 2:08.18 performance that was good for second place.

Senior Leslie Treherne (Chesapeake, Va.) and freshman Rose-Anne Galligan (County Kildare, Ireland) came home in 2:12.32 and 2:12.98, respectively, to snag fourth and fifth positions in a field that also featured six other UT competitors.

"Overall, our team performed well this weekend," UT Head Coach J.J. Clark said. "We got some more provisional qualifiers from Sarah and Celriece this weekend, and Cleo Tyson moved up the list, which will help our depth in that area during the championship portion of the season. It was good to see Sarah get a provisional in a second event.

"We now have to focus and gear up for the next two meets and get some more qualifiers for the NCAA meet. We look forward to getting back to it next weekend at the Penn State National Invitational."

Bowman came back later in the afternoon to wind up as Tennessee's top finisher in the 3000 meters. Her career-best 9:56.96 readout was good for fourth place, while senior Felicia Guliford (Gallup, N.M.) and freshman Kelly Parrish (Ocala, Fla.) debuted in 10:16.81 and 10:21.81, respectively, to place ninth and 11th.

Tennessee showed its depth in the mile run, as three Lady Vols posted personal-best times and put four among the top six collegiate finishers. Leading the way for Team Orange was Galligan, who was fourth overall and the top college competitor in a PR 4:49.11.

Two Clark -coached post-collegiates, Natalie Hughes and former Lady Vol Brooke Novak, went one-two at 4:47.80 and 4:48.17, respectively, while Indiana Invader Irina Watkins was third at 4:48.57.

UT sophomore Katie Van Horn (Glendora , N.J.), freshman Jackie Areson (Delray Beach, Fla.) and senior Katie Flaute (Dayton, Ohio) finished sixth, eighth and ninth overall and among the top six college competitors with times of 4:53.52, 4:58.03 and 4:59.12, respectively. Van Horn and Flaute both registered career bests.

In the shot put, junior Amara McKell (Nashville, Tenn.) wound up eighth with a throw of 43-9 3/4, while classmate Shanna Dickenson (Cincinnati, Ohio) was 13th at 40-4 1/4.

Tennessee closed out the meet by taking third in the 4x400m relay in 3:44.27 with Loche, Champion, Layne and Treherne carrying the baton.


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